buying your first home - what you should know

Getting Children's Craft Stains Out Of Carpet

Children can be delightfully creative, but sometimes that creativity spills over onto your carpet. Almost any art supply can lead to a brightly colored stain, but fortunately you can often get the stains out with a little knowledge and a bit of elbow grease. The following guide can help you with this task.


The method used depends on whether it is permanent or washable markers. For washable markers, all you need is a bit of liquid carpet spot remover, the brand of your choice, and some water. Dampen the stain with a clean rag and water, using a blotting motion instead of rubbing, since rubbing can spread the stain. Then, apply the carpet cleaner and allow it to set for a few minutes or the length of time recommended on the label. Using your rag, blot up the cleaner, rinse with water, and blot again.

Permanent markers require a bit more work. Dampen a white rag with rubbing alcohol – or alcohol-based hairspray if you don't have rubbing alcohol available. Blot it onto the stain – don't rub! As the stain transfers to the rag, move to a clean area of the rag, add alcohol, and repeat. You may have to do this several times to lift the stain completely.


Washable paint can be removed using the same method one would use for washable markers. In fact, you can remove any water-based paint, such as acrylics or fingerpaints, using that method and hot water, which loosens dried paint. Blotting with rubbing alcohol will usually remove any remaining paint color from the carpet fibers.

Oil-based paint is more challenging. Blot up as much wet paint as possible. If the paint is dry, scrape as much out of the carpet using a dull butter knife as you can. Then, dampen a white rag with turpentine and blot up the paint, removing as much of it as possible. Once done, apply a carpet cleaner, wait as directed on the label, and then blot it up with a clean rag. Repeat the process, starting with the turpentine, until the stain is gone. Finish by rinsing with water.


It doesn't matter what type of clay it is. Let it dry completely and then brush out as much of it from the carpet as possible. Use your vacuum to pick up the loose clay bits. Repeat the process until the carpet is clay-free. A metal bristle dog brush can help break the small bits of clay free from the carpet, if necessary. If there is a dye stain remaining from the clay, use the alcohol method that is recommended above for permanent markers to remove the stain.

Before using any type of stain remover, make sure you test it on a hidden area of the carpet first to ensure it doesn't cause more damage. You can also call in a professional carpet cleaner to tackle your art stains.