Clean your canvas bag? Here’s how!

clean canvas stain dirty wash Okay, so you got your natural canvas bag dirty. Maybe you just have a few spots to clean up or worse case scenario, you dragged it on the subway floor like Riegan did a few years. The good news is that my canvas is tough stuff and we have offered options! Hint: read to the end.

First, use a stiff bristle brush to remove soil/lint etc. from in between the fibers. This fabric is tightly woven and much of the stain can be removed this way. DON’T brush the monogram/embroidery as you might pull or damage the thread. NEXT, you need to decide if the bag can be spot cleaned or if the majority of the bag is soiled.

How to Spot Clean the Bag:

TIDE STICKS work well for most stains (except blood, see below).

If the small stains persists you will need to have the following on hand:

Stiff bristle brush or toothbrush

Cool to warm water

Small bowl

Two white towels (one for inside to absorb liquids & one to apply the cleaning liquid)

Baking soda / cream of tartar / baking powder (one or all make a watery paste). Let paste sit then rub off.

Rubbing alcohol mixed 50/50 with water. This is good for general cleaning and mold/mildew.

Hydrogen peroxide is generally a good cleaning product, especially for body fluids and yellowing.

Ivory soap (or any neutral ph soap) mixed with a small amount of water. Use sparingly as the water may leave a ‘ring’. If you do get a ring move to ‘if all else fails’ below!


If the bag is generally soiled like Riegan’s was or if there is a ‘ring’ around your spot stain then the next steps are:

  • Pretreat the canvas with Shout or other laundry pre treatment. The monogram/embroidery will not be affected because we use color safe thread.
  • Do not machine wash as it may cause wrinkles that are difficult to remove.
  • Do not bleach!
  • Use a bathtub or large sink, submerge the whole bag laying it as flat a possible. Let it soak for at least 5 minutes then use the soft brush and/or wash cloth to remove the stains. Turn the bag over and do the same.Then rinse the bag. You can rinse it by refilling the tub and submerging the bag again, holding it under the spigot or turning on the shower head to rinse. Repeat this process if necessary letting the bag soak longer.
  • You can drip dry the bag on a hanger or lay it flat on a towel. Flip it to dry both sides. Stuffing the bags with a towel will make them dry faster. If it’s a nice day you can dry them outside.

Hope these tips & tricks help you keep your QBS canvas bag looking as good as new but if not you should buy yourself a NEW one – YOU deserve it after all this work and I am offering you a discount code for your replacement or whatever! Use ‘mybagiskaput’ and receive 20% off.