Cleaning a Suitcase

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always good clean

Suitcases might suffer wear if you are a frequent traveller, or they might accumulate dust if you only ever take an annual vacation.  A few rough edges might add character to a case, and maybe even deter the thieves; but there is something appealing about setting off on holiday with a neat case that is packed in a tidy manner, even if will be a cluttered mess by the time you return.


  • Empty the case. And keep hold of the foreign coins and other treasures you find left forgotten in the many pockets. Many lost cufflinks and earing are found this way.
  • Vacuuming with a brush attachment is usually a good start. Vacuuming the inside, where socks and underwear go, is important if you want to avoid mysterious itching later on.
  • Try gently rubbing down the surface with a damp cloth. Use a small amount of diluted soap if necessary, but test on an inconspicuous part of the bag first.


Leather Bags

Use saddle soap or anything formulated for leather. Avoid getting leather actually wet, though a damp cloth is usually ok.


Hard surfaces

Hard cases can be cleaned with mild sprays. Wipe off quickly and remove residue with a damp cloth.

Melamine erasers (Magic eraser) can remove many scuff marks, but they can also scratch some soft surfaces. Test on an inconspicuous area.


Soft Cloth Bags

These are probably too big for the washing machine and risky as zips will damage the machine’s insides. Washing in a laundry sink is often a good option. Use some mild soap and rinse afterward.


Always let the bag thoroughly dry before being stored or used.

If the inside of the bag has any odour try some bicarbonate of soda on the surface. Leave it for a day or two and the vacuum. Use a lavender sachet or something similar when storing the bag for any period of time. Anything used to deodorize sock draws will probably be good here.

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