I’ll say this, it’s a great book and it’s worth a read. Is it worth the price tag with all the information available online these days? I’ll say no – just my opinion, only because a book is already out of date. Every time I google a cleaning solution, the goal posts have changed and there’s a better solution. That’s what Google is, a continual improvement to a solution. Just Google ‘clean a woollen coat’ – wikihow.com is offering the best advice on the planet for free, that’s not my opinion, it’s Googles too – they rank them first as well. It’s definitely good if you value your home interior decor and have pets though. Some great tips there and I’ll say this – if you don’t have access to the internet all the time, yep this is a cool buy and resource. That said I’ll continue with the review:
Co-author of the famous book Spotless Shannon Lush writes, “I developed a keen interest in stain removal after soiling with paint, as when I am painting I make a serious mess.”
Proficient in all art forms; ceramics, glass, painting, sculpture and working with metals, Lush now works as a restoration expert.
No doubt through the discovery of these various arts and crafts, her knowledge and skills of eliminating spills and stains has grown to greater-than-average proportions. Add to this the information she gained about chemical reactions from her engineer father, and the result is a comprehensive book of solutions to just about any domestic disaster – one might say she’s over qualified in stain removing! Here’s a look at a far more realistic home scenario, that the highs of fine antique restoration and stain removal don’t compare to.
Queen of Clean Lush states that expensive cleaning materials are not necessary; she goes on to prove her money-saving point quite conclusively and we will look at some of the methods she uses.
Radio producer and presenter Jennifer Fleming describes herself as the “absorber and writer of the book”. A strange collaborator, given that she admits to paying someone else to clean her house and not being at all interested in stain removal. She tells of her friends’ surprised reaction when she said she was writing Spotless, as they knew of her lack of domesticity. However, she has become a specialist in theory, if not practice, which complements Lush’s practicality.
Remove those nasty stains and get wax out of linen
Alongside the helpful hints about getting rid of everything from removing marks on mirrors to candle wax on bed sheets, the book is entertaining. Decoration with mirrors fails badly if mirrors aren’t really glowing and reflective.
Whilst most of us end up with marks on mirrors, the reader wonders exactly how candle wax got onto a bed sheet, and thus needs to be removed.
Other mysterious problems include:
– cockroach droppings on books
– decomposing rubber on bath towels
– rotted melon on a wooden surface.
Clean That Woollen Coat
Lush’s 224 pages of do-it-yourself stain removal advice are also peppered with practical tips such as making starch from rice water and how to fix a hole in cane furniture. It comes in handy if your looking to schedule your cleaning too. It’s showing plenty of good structure and value there.
She helps the reader to save money on dry-cleaning bills with explanations on how to clean a wool coat, silk scarf and leather jacket. All very useful advice indeed, in these times of the credit crunch. I still don’t like it though, I am as thrifty as can be but the only way I am cleaning my nice coat pictured below is at the dry cleaners. Sorry guys, good book, but it’s not for me.
Spotless English was written with an English readership in mind, and there are a couple of products mentioned by brand name, such as Vanish and Gumption, which might not be recognised in some other countries. However, many of the cleaning solutions mentioned in the book are store cupboard basics including those essentials: vinegar and bicarbonate of soda (baking soda). They’ll show you some great tips to keep your worktops in good condition as well.
The fun cover design of Spotless is in primary colours with a retro 1950s look, reflected in the size of the book (5”x 7”). It would make a great housewarming gift to anyone moving into their own home as well as a useful addition to the shelves of those who have battled with stains for years.