Help - my cowhide rug has crease lines! How to I remove them?
Wrinkles or fold lines in a cowhide rug can be very ugly. If a cowhide rug is stored for a long period of time folded then it can be very difficult to remove the fold lines.
Before you buy a cowhide rug ask the supplier if the rug is stored folded and think twice before buying.
From experience I can say that it is not always possible to fix these crease or wrinkle lines. Leather has a memory and if it is left in the same position for a long time it remembers.
You can fold a cowhide rug for a short period of time without risking long term wrinkles, up to four weeks should be OK.
Any longer than this and my theory is that the leather fibres start to lose moisture, and as they dry out the crease lines can start to be sealed in.
This is why it is OK to courier a cowhide rug overseas while folded or to store a cowhide for a short time while moving house. As long as you open the parcel and lay the hide flat as soon as possible any folds should fall out in a week.
So how do you get the wrinkles out of a cowhide rug? To try and remove the wrinkles first lay the rug flat on a floor and see if the wrinkles diminish naturally over a few weeks. A light mist with water can sometimes speed this up, or humid weather is wonderful too.
As a last resort you can iron a cowhide rug. I usually start with a clean cloth like a tea-towel (not coloured or dyed) and set the iron to the cotton setting with lots of steam. Iron both the hairy side and the leather side with the cloth between the iron and the hide.
If this doesn't work I finally try the iron directly onto the hide but keep the iron moving or you will end up with the shape of the iron reflected in the hair of the cowhide.