How to: Get Red Wine out of Carpet

I am by nature,  a spiller. I spill as I’m pouring, I spill as I’m drinking, I spill as I pass by a table holding a beverage. My husband is (rightfully) paranoid about all beverages sharing space near me and electronics. Sometimes I get offended. But mostly he’s right.
We got new carpet about 9 months ago. I’ll be honest, it’s not looking too new any more. But all summer long I followed my “white wine only” rule in the living room. Then fall came. And I was strolling Trader Joe’s, dreaming of casseroles and mashed potatoes and a bottle of Purple Moon Shiraz leaped from the shelf to my cart.

A glass of said Shiraz was sitting nicely on my coffee table Saturday night when a sweeping hand gesture knocked it off the table and onto the newish carpet. Husband let out a sigh, moved his chair over, and brought me some damp paper towels. He went back to his movie. I raced to the kitchen for the large box of kosher salt (90% of this box has gone to this purpose).

Salt? Why yes, salt does a knock out job on fresh red wine. Let me explain.

When red wine spills, cover the area thoroughly with salt. The salt will start to absorb the wine immediately.

As the salt turns pink, keep covering it with new salt, which will continue to pull the wine out of the carpet.

Once the top layer of salt stays white, vacuum up all of the salt.

Repeat until the salt you sprinkle stays white.

Once that happens, start blotting what’s left of the stain with plain white paper towels. If you place a wet paper towel over the stain, it will start to absorb the remainder of the stain.

Make the sign of the cross (if it’s newish carpet) and continue to blot until the stain is gone.

A few points: I don’t believe the salt has to be kosher, it’s just that kosher salt comes in giant boxes, which is helpful to me. One thing I’ve learned is that you don’t want to start blotting until the salt trick is completely exhausted, because once you’ve introduced water, you can’t use the salt.

Once you’ve pulled this party trick at an actual  party, switch to white wine. Trust me on this one.

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