Is velvet too extravagant to be practical?

Posted by Rob Taylor on

Though extremely popular during the Renaissance among royalty and the nobles; today, velvet can be enjoyed by everyone, yet it still retains its opulent feeling and classic look.

Originally woven from silk, today most silk velvet is made from a blend of silk and rayon. The luxurious silk fibres creates a luminous sheen, making it a glamorous fabric to wear for a special event, or to feel beautiful in when at home.

If you feel velvet is too extravagant or that it may require a lot of care, you will be pleasantly surprised. If properly cared for velvet can retain its beauty and be enjoyed for many years. 


The word velvet comes from the Italian word velluto, meaning “shaggy" to describe the upraised pile that provides its soft, sensory texture. You’ll notice that when you wear velvet, the pile may ruffle up, crease or flatten. These marks are completely normal and over time the pile will generally return back to its natural state. You can also gently steam the velvet to smooth it out, however avoid ironing the fabric.

Some heavier marks may become permanent, but think of them as a patina that will give the piece a greater sense of character. Velvet is just like a fine wine, it gets better with age.  

How to clean silk velvet?

If stained, we advise professional dry cleaning after wearing. Refrain from blotting spills, taking extra care to avoid applying pressure when wet. 


* one of the safest methods for washing velvet.

1. Hand wash in cool water with silk or wool wash.

2. Submerge the item and gently agitate the water with your hands to evenly distribute soap.

3. Soak for up to 30 minutes.

4. Rinse well by running tepid water through the item until the water is no longer soapy.

5. Do not wring. Instead, press the water out of the item.

6. Lay the item flat, hang to dry, or put in the dryer on the “fluff” setting to prevent a crushed velvet appearance.

7. Steam after washing to remove wrinkles. Never iron, as ironing will crush or flatten the natural pile.

Note: A velvet item such as a pant can be hung on a hanger; however, be mindful of clips because they can leave marks on the material.


Always store items clean. We recommend storing silk velvet in a breathable cotton hanging storage bag to protect items from bugs. Storing in plastic encourages yellowing and can trap mildew-causing moisture and bugs.

Dreamwear's velvet range is made from the finest fabric possible, its luxurious silk fibres create a luminous sheen, making each piece soft to touch and luxurious to wear. Lovingly tailored into genuine garments from our fabulously fair partner sewing centre, Fairsew. They are created with care and kindness for you to treasure for years to come.

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