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Designs On Cutting The Visibility Of Stains

Alan Whittle, UK sales director Wilton Carpets Commercial, examines the role of carpet in bars and restaurants:

WORN and dirty carpets make any interior look drab, no matter how gleaming the fixtures or luxurious the furniture. Dirt and stains can be found particularly around entrances, underneath tables and in narrow corridors. The best response – immediate removal – is not possible.

Firstly, consider the visual and the actual effects for dirt and stains. How much dirt and stains are visible to the human eye, and how readily they are lifted from the carpet.

Colour and pattern play a big role. Darker base colours are better at disguising dirt and stains. Foodstuffs are rarely translucent, mud is nearly always brown and the nastiest stains are always darkest – red wine, coffee – so the less contrast between dirt and stains and carpet the better.

Pattern helps disguising stains, even permanent ones, especially a high contrast colour palette rather than tone-on-tone. Pattern breaks the line of sight created with block colour, reducing the stain’s appearance, even though the same stain would show more on a plain carpet of the same base colour.

The more complex the pattern the more effective the result. The ideal dirt and stain hiding carpet has a
black base colour with an intricate pattern in many different colours, but fewest light shades. Patterns mean less time on maintenance and a longer lasting carpet. Any carpet fibre, no matter how tough, is worn by the coarseness of dirt particles, so carry out regular vacuuming with a good quality cleaner at least once a day. Lifting as much walked in dirt and debris as possible also helps to stop the carpet looking ‘dirtied’.

Treat any stains with a suitable spot cleaner. The less time you leave a stain the better, so
regular checks during vacuuming should help to ensure spills don’t become permanent.

Also every few months give the carpet a proper professional deep clean. A skilled professional knows what products to use to restore the vibrancy and will often remove stains you thought impossible to shift. Deep cleaning is an essential part of carpet maintenance, not a once in a lifetime luxury.

In terms of fibre and construction, wool axminsters are the standard choice for bar and eatery locations and for good reason. Hardwearing, the axminster construction can be ‘fine-tuned’ to your needs and it is also the best for pattern reproduction. There is a long- established use of a wool-rich combination, generally using 20% nylon, offering an ideal combination of performance, luxury and value.

Carpet adds to the ambience of your interior, something not achievable with other floors, but careful selection is needed. Get it right and you will be blessed with a floor that boosts the warmth and welcome of your establishment, subdues background noise, hides dirt and stains and that will last for a long time.

This article has been reproduced from the Contract Flooring Journal website. You can find them at