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Denim smell

user-7816042 | Posted in Fabric Guidance on

Denim fabric seems permeated now with an awful smell. Even soaked overnight in a strong vinegar solution, it doesn’t come out. Is there any way to get it out? I’ve tried some online solutions, but they don’t work.


  1. Spkinapparel | | #1

    It seems to me that this is almost impossible, the smell will fade slightly over time, but you should not hope for complete disappearance.

  2. elritojoan | | #2

    Fabric finishes can be difficult, but not all fabric is finished the same way. I gave up quilting because the finishes were giving me headaches. I’ve recently found that Oeko-tex fabrics are okay for my sensitivities, and so far organic fabrics work for me. Sometimes I use various washing methods to try to diminish or even get rid of the smells. Vinegar soak, as you mentioned, washing soda, baking soda, synthropol, and lots of airing in the sun. But if the chemical bond is strong, you may need to give up on the fabric. Good luck with finding something that works for you.

  3. user-7816042 | | #3

    I soaked denim in a strong borax solution overnight and then washed it in detergent with more borax. The smell faded quite a bit, but still detectable. I admit that my sense of smell is quite keen.
    I did find that light denim seems easier to get the smell out of.

  4. User avater
    ShortSeam | | #4

    Hang the denim fabric in the sunlight, outdoors. The UV rays of the sun will remove scents and odors. You can search the internet for directions. I’ve used this method successfully. Even strong moth ball smells from corduroy fabric. Good luck!

  5. Cassy0110 | | #5

    I usually hang denim in the garden for a day

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