I have been asked by a lovely lady if it is possible to remove mould from 1920's felt hats. These hats are part of a wonderful history and the person is desperate to fix them but is wondering what would be the best way to approach this situation. One suggestion was Clove oil, and a vacuum, but I'm wondering what other ideas people may have.
This can be tricky. It depends on how badly they are infested.
If it is light: a good brushing (outside so you don't spread the mold spores) and then allow them to sit in the sun.
If medium: same as above but then vacuum (outside and then empty bag so you don't spread spores). If it is still there then you might need to spot clean which could mean using a detergent, a dry cleaning fluid, gasoline, lemon juice, or even bleach.
There are some cases where the entire hat must be taken apart, cleaned, then reassembled replacing any damaged trims that might cause additional mold infestation and using era appropriate replacements.
Cleaning and restoration of older hats is an art in its own right and exceptional care must be taken. If you have not done this before it is probably not wise to start on someone else's hats unless they are willing to possibly have them sacrificed to experimentation.
Melissa find some more solutions here