Thursday, July 9, 2009

Apology Accepted

As he brought in the new (to us) carpet and stood it in the corner of the sun room, he muttered something about being sorry that he wasn't able to vacuum it properly before he rolled it up.

I didn't think much about it until a few days later when I went to unroll it.

I set about it in a husband approved way: I unrolled it upside down first, and vacuumed off the back. Then I slowly rolled it over, vacuuming the furry side and the floor as I went.

Because he hadn't been kidding.  It was fairly well full of stuff.

The thing is, it's a shag carpet- an area rug. LONG brown shag carpet.

And while I've noticed that the home fashion industry has done a great job of bringing back all our favourite home fashion statements from such marvelous eras as the 60's and 70's, I haven't seen a lot of the home fashion cleaning implements showing up. Or I'm not looking in the right place. Or I haven't had need of them before now.

We shared in the 70's shag carpet phase when I was a kid, and I can remember having to vacuum that living room carpet (and the orange one in my bedroom....) with a special "fork" attachment. It "clawed" through that shaggy carpet so one could get the bits and pieces from the bottom underneath. It also "raked" it to make it nicely fluffed up.

Not having a "fork" to attach to the vacuum cleaner, I finally took one of the upholstery cleaning implements to it- the sort of long, skinny ended one that you might use to vacuum in the cracks of couches.

With this I was able to go at it with a sort of "liposuction procedure" action. Digging it in there- up and down, sideways. A little patch at a time.

And by golly, two one hour sessions with a break in between got that carpet pretty clean.

I think this is why we haven't bought one of those nice fluffy looking shag carpets from Ikea... the voice of cleaning reason!

Ah, well.

I think I will leave it in the sun room. It makes the chair corner look like a cozy chair corner, and not so much like chairs in a corner. It might also induce children to stay in there and play with the toys. Toy playing is always a much nicer prospect when there is a soft carpet to kneel on.

And it's only taken about 24 hours for my arms to stop hurting so much...


  1. I apologise again. I thought I had given it a "good" cleaning not too long ago, though not as good as I thought. I certainly didn't spend 2 hours on it!

    Consider yours any change/change-purses/billfolds/cash-loaded briefcases/treasure chests you may have found in amongst the shag.

  2. Sadly, I've vacuumed that thing once a week for the past 6 weeks -- but just with the attachment I use for the laminate. It basically clogged the hose with "fur" from the rug.

    That's what I've always loved about that carpet. It can be a complete mess and you can't really notice it, unlike more sanitary things like hardwood or lino.

    It's been 2 years since the flood when the kids lived in the living room and I have pictures of them eating apples and yogurt tubes and all the rest on there. I would have been quite frightened to clean that thing!

  3. Oh, you guys. It's not about how much the previous owners of the carpet cleaned it. It's about how anal I am about certain things: cleaning windows/mirrors, vacuuming, wiping down the shower walls, ironing wrinkles out of shirts and pillowcases...

    It's just that once I get started on those things, I can't stop. And they must be as perfect as I can make them. I am slightly fanatical about it.

    And this was more about the ability of carpet makers to make shag carpets without equipping us to clean them, than about how clean the carpet was.

    Had I several small children still running around, those two hours would NOT have been spent lipo-vacuuming the shag carpet!

    : )

  4. OK, just bought a shag area carpet for the living room and I asked the "girl" working at Rona if they sold any type of attachment to help clean it. She just looked confused. I remember my mom had a plastic rake for the shag we had in the house when I was a kid. I don't remember how she vacuumed it tho.
    Did anyone else's shag shed and shed and shed the first bit when they got it? Mine is moulting I think. Maybe I shouldn't have bought it in summer. Shedding season and all....