Model and humanitarian Genoveva Casanov wears a white crochet dress on the red carpet.

How to Clean a White Crocheted Dress

by Mimi Abney

A vintage or modern, runway-inspired white crocheted dress is a trendy wardrobe item that is stylish, chic and flirty. When your favorite white crocheted dress gets dirty, however, you do not have to take a trip to your neighborhood dry cleaners for an expensive, and chemical-based, cleaning treatment. While you must handle the fragile fibers of your knitted dress carefully, a step-by-step hand-washing session at home will remove stains and odors from your fashionable frock easily and gently.


Fill a medium-sized basin with lukewarm water. If you use water that is too hot, you may shrink the knit fibers beyond repair.

Add a teaspoon of liquid detergent to the basin. Combine the detergent and water together with your hands to create suds.

Submerge your white dress in the basin. Swirl and dip the dress in and out of the water, for a maximum of two to three minutes, to coat the fibers with the soapy mixture. To prevent stretching the garment out of shape, do not twist, wring or rub the dress.

Remove the dress from the bowl. Give it a gentle squeeze to release the water from the fabric.

Empty and refill the basin with clean, lukewarm water. Swirl the dress gently in the water for two to three minutes to rinse and release the soap from the fabric. Repeat until the dress is soap-free. Squeeze the water from the dress with your hands.

Lay a large, white towel on a flat surface. Place the dress flat on the towel. Put another large towel on top of the dress. Roll up the towels, from one end to the other, pressing the towels gently to remove the excess water from the crocheted dress.

Place a clean white towel on a large drying rack. Lay the dress on top of the rack. Put the drying rack in a well-ventilated area to allow the dress to dry.

Stain Removal

Cut a lemon in half. Lay the white dress flat on a white towel.

Wet the stained area with water. Rub the cut lemon on the stain. Let the juice remain on the stain for 30 minutes.

Hand-wash your dress in a medium-sized basin filled with lukewarm water and mild liquid detergent. Swirl the dress in the basin for a few minutes to clean. Rinse the dress with clean water to remove the soap and lemon residue.

Lay the dress flat on a large towel. Roll the towel from bottom to top to remove any excess water. Lay the dress flat on a clean and dry towel. Place the towel and dress on a drying rack. Put the rack in direct sunlight to allow the dress to dry. The combined power of the lemon juice and the sun’s rays acts as a natural bleaching agent to lift the stains from the dress.

Items you will need

  • Basin
  • Liquid detergent
  • Large white towels
  • Drying rack
  • Lemons


  • Your crocheted dress may lose its original shape during washing. Reshape and lay it flat on the rack to dry.


  • To keep your white crocheted dress from yellowing, do not store it in plastic dry cleaner bags. Wrap your dress in acid-free tissue paper for storage in a wooden cedar chest instead.

About the Author

Mimi Abney is a lifestyle writer specializing in online content for women. Her work has appeared in and "Keepsake Magazine," among other publications. With over 15 years of writing and editing experience for the web and print, Abney is also a contributor to online health, beauty and fashion publications. She holds a Bachelor of Science in biology from Spelman College.

Photo Credits

  • Carlos Alvarez/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images