Jute is a long, rough vegetable fiber. Similar to hemp or flax, it is usually used to make burlap or Hessian fabric and made into sacks, but it is also used to make area rugs, curtains, chair coverings, and carpet. Jute grows quickly without fatiguing the land which means that harvesting the plant and producing rugs made of jute are safe for the environment. These all-natural rugs are biodegradable and can be recycled easily.
Jute rugs give a raw, homey texture to a plain room. They make a great accent piece or mudroom rug. You can use a jute rug, or a jute sisal rug, which combines jute and another plant fiber, to complement wood furniture. On top of these benefits, jute rugs are also easy to clean and maintain. Here is some information about how you can keep yours looking brand new.
Cleaning and Maintenance
Vacuum your jute rug twice a week. Use a suction vacuum without a beater bar, and guide the vacuum over the rug in several different directions. Go over the rug a few times to remove all dirt and debris. Jute is the softest of the natural fibers which does lead to some issues with durability if they’re not regularly cleaned and maintained. Always make sure to rotate your rug at least once a year to make sure that it is wearing down evenly over time.
Always keep your rug dry. When the atmosphere in your house is too humid, the rug may lose some of its durability. Moisture also makes jute susceptible to mold and mildew. If water must be applied to the rug, make sure to vacuum your rug first. If water is added to any dirt still trapped in the rug, it may result in permanent staining.
You can buy a dry-cleaning kit for extra protection. Sprinkle some of the powder onto your rug and brush it with a stiff-bristle hand brush. Shake the remaining powder out of the rug, and then vacuum as usual.
Spot Cleaning A Jute Rug
To remove a spot or spill, press the area with a white cloth or paper towel from the outside of the stain to the inside to prevent it from spreading. Blot the spill until there’s no moisture left to stain the cloth or paper.
Let the spot dry, and usually, it will disappear. If not, dab at the area with a cloth dipped in water and mild detergent. Dry the spot with a fan or a hand-held hair dryer.
If you spill a red-colored food, like tomato sauce or red wine, on the rug, dab the stain with a white cloth dipped in club soda to neutralize the color and get rid of the spot. Let the spot dry naturally.
Do not use a rug shampooer, steam cleaner or any water saturation method on a natural fiber jute rug.
Remove Pet Stains From A Jute Rug
It’s a little harder to keep jute rugs clean if you have a pet, as animals can be unpredictable, even if they’re well trained.
If your dog or cat urinates on the rug, blot up as much of the liquid as you can with a cloth or paper towel, working from the center of the stain to stop spreading. Defuse odor by dipping a towel in a mixture of 1/4 cup water and 1/4 cup white vinegar and dabbing the spot. Then blot the affected area with a dry towel.
If a pet defecates or throws up on the rug, scrape up what you can with a putty knife or similar tool. Pick up the matter from the outside to avoid making the spot worse. Then press the spot with a white cloth or paper towel until there’s no color transferring to the cloth/paper. If the spot doesn’t dry or disappear naturally, dab at it with a cloth dipped in warm water and mild soap. Then, let it dry on its own, or use a fan or hair dryer. Alternately, you can spray enzyme cleaner or white vinegar on the stain and blot it until the spot is gone.
After the rug has dried, take it outside and shake it to dispose of any particles you might not have seen. Lay it on a porch or other flat surface to let it dry in the sun. This will eliminate any odors.
Precautions for Jute Rugs
Jute rugs are inexpensive and have a folksy, natural look, but they are also the least durable natural fiber. If they are placed in an area with lots of foot traffic, they may only last a few years before sustaining so much damage that they’ll need to be discarded.
Jute can become mildewed or moldy if you live in a humid climate or need a rug for your bathroom or front porch. This natural fiber rug has a tendency to shed, and you may notice strands fall out when you move the rug or clean it.
If your jute rug has mildew, remove it by mixing six parts water to one part bleach in a spray bottle. Spray a bit on the rug. If there is any discoloration dilute the spray with more water and test again. When you have the right amount of water to bleach, spray the mixture on the mildew and use a soft brush to work in the solution. Wait ten minutes, then rub the area with a dry cloth.
Advantages of Jute Rugs
Jute rugs are easy to clean and can be vacuumed so you won’t need to worry about your rug collecting too much debris or becoming dull. Water and a clean cloth will eliminate most blemishes or spills, and vinegar or a carpet spray will take care of stubborn stains.
Most are sold in cozy, neutral designs that fit in any lifestyle. Tan, brown and beige are popular colors for jute rugs so they can be used in both contemporary and traditional room designs. Jute has a down-home, rough-hewn texture that adds character to any floor or room.
If you’re on a budget, jute rugs are also among the least expensive area rugs available.