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VO2Max
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Dry Cleaning ****-up

I'm shaking with fury.

My dad (80) just gave me a lovely old light beige summer jacket of his, which must be nearly 50 years old. It needed a clean so I took it to the cleaners last week. The woman took a look at it and said 'ooh, that's a fabric I don't know much about, you'll have to sign a disclaimer because we can't guarantee we can get it totally clean'. 'OK' says I, so I sign it.

Went to pick up the jacket today and not only have they not managed to get all the stains off, they have broken some of the lovely buttons off too. The woman said 'we put some new buttons on for you, but we won't charge you...' WTF?!!!!! 'Well, you did sign a disclaimer...' I'm incandescent with rage. I don't care about them not being able to clean it, it's that they evidently haven't given a **** about being careful with the jacket. That really gets my goat! And the amazing thing is, when my dad gave me the jacket, my mum said 'look at those lovely buttons, they're all original, look how well they're sewn on, you don't get that these days'. I guess that has added to my disgust.

I know nothing of the process of dry cleaning, can anyone shed any light on how this might have happened? Is there a machine that does it? Is it done by hand? Is it a common occurrence to have buttons broken off by the cleaning process. Are they necessarily incompetent idiots or is this just something that can happen during the process? The buttons were plastic of some sort (I think) but they were well sewn on and seemed perfectly sturdy when given a tug before they got their hands on the jacket.

I'm very upset, it seems such a small thing but hey, my dad gave it to me and he won't be around forever. He's given me a lovely old lambskin jacket too but they won't be touching that! I just can't bear the thought of idiots f*cking it up, maybe I'm being unfair and it's just 'one of those things'?
 
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Re: Dry Cleaning ****-up

Sorry to hear this, it's always awful when something like his happens, you just can't trust people to look after your stuff

Could be bakelite or celluloid buttons, more likely celluloid with the age you describe, both types are quite fragile...
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Re: Dry Cleaning ****-up

What's peeing me off is that we gave the buttons a good tug and they seemed good as new. That makes me suspicious that there wasn't enough care taken. They looked not really any different from more modern buttons, shiny, with no cracks or damage evident.
 
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Re: Dry Cleaning ****-up

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I'm shaking with fury.

I
lambskin jacket too but they won't be touching that! I just can't bear the thought of idiots f*cking it up, maybe I'm being unfair and it's just 'one of those things'?
Hi, VO2Max,
sad too hear,it may be the way they steam press nowadays, though ,as stated could be fragile.
We have spoken about the lambskin before, and I`m still of the view too air it, they look good with a touch of age about them.
John.
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Re: Dry Cleaning ****-up

Indeed John, I hung the lambskin jacket in the conservatory for a week with the fanlights open, fresh as a daisy now!
 
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Re: Dry Cleaning ****-up

Dry cleaning's not really different to using your washing machine, except it uses other chemicals, not water. - wikipedia can probably elucidate.

If you have other valuable clothes to clean, maybe try a wedding shop, they should have/ know of a more specialised cleaning service perhaps ?
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Re: Dry Cleaning ****-up

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Indeed John, I hung the lambskin jacket in the conservatory for a week with the fanlights open, fresh as a daisy now!
VO2Max
Good to hear
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Re: Dry Cleaning ****-up

Trouble is with a lot of service industries these days they just do not provide the training or the ability to care for the customer. I, too would be very angree as a jacket aged 50 years old must have real sentimental value

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VO2Max
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Re: Dry Cleaning ****-up

Yes Cheradnine, I just looked on Wikipedia and you are right, a dry cleaning machine is pretty well like a domestic washing machine, only using solvents instead of water. Which begs the question, did they overload the machine, causing the buttons to break off and should they have warned me that it would be a good idea to remove the buttons 1st and then refit after? There was no impression given beforehand that there was a danger that the buttons would be ripped off.

I'll hopefully speak to the manager tomorrow and try to shed some light on it.
 
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Re: Dry Cleaning ****-up

I would be able to accept the fact that they couldnt get some stains out, but the buttons off??? thats just neglect, i would be going absolutly barmy with them, dont let the manager fob you off,
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Re: Dry Cleaning ****-up

That's disappointing did they manage to save the buttons or were they eaten up by the chemicals? Such a shame. Take it to a tailor shop if you get the time and find out what the fabric is so you can get the stains out.
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Re: Dry Cleaning ****-up

burn the place down. a dry-cleaners should go up a treat with all those solvents in there
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Re: Dry Cleaning ****-up

sorry to hear about your jacket, ive had nothing but hassle with dry cleaning companies 2! i have my own wdding shops and used to send my smaples to them but they kept coming back either with broken bits or a few sizes too small! and once they had the cheek to say it's my poor workmanship and fabrics, ive stopped using them, and i wash my samples in washing machine and even the delicate gowns come out great,
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Re: Dry Cleaning ****-up

Bad news Max

Clearly they didn't use enough care. TBH, when they asked you to sign a disclaimer, that should have got alarm bells ringing, but I appreciate that you'd expect professionals to do their job properly, and these guys didn't do it.
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Re: Dry Cleaning ****-up

Sorry to hear that dude !!

Unfortunately it sounds like the people you used are a bunch of cowboys

As Biggie said the disclaimer would have set my alarm bells ringing too !!

We have a dry cleaning service that visits my workplace and I've put all kinds of stuff in with them and had no problems whatsoever !! (They're much better and cheaper than my local supermarket service which has no competition in the town )
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Re: Dry Cleaning ****-up

The diclaimer probably doesn't excuse them from using proper care. But then again, what exactly would you sue for? Hard to imagine a court would accept that a years-old cardie has such sentimental value that compensation worth a court case is in order.

A strongly worded letter wouldn't hurt. Might at least get a goodwill gesture (though it might well be vouchers for use in their shop!).
 
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I'm not really interested in compensation, sueing them and the like. I want to establish if there was lack of care and if so, rub their noses in it. I am sick of this 'no blame attributable' crap that you always seem to get these days. If the law of sod has messed up the jacket, so be it. If they have f*cked up though, I want to be able to tell them to their face, that's all.
 
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Re: Dry Cleaning ****-up

I think it's a deffo that they are to blame fella
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Re: Dry Cleaning ****-up

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and if so, rub their noses in it. I am sick of this 'no blame attributable' crap that you always seem to get these days. If the law of sod has messed up the jacket, so be it. If they have f*cked up though, I want to be able to tell them to their face, that's all.
Hi,
Max,
You are so right.
Sick of," it will costs X ?"
Which we pay ,and get a rubbish service.
"What happened to take pride in our work/product?"etc.
I make a point of seeing the manager,
Then take great pleasure,(if not satisfied)
Telling him/her.of my intentions of informing my entire social/work circles,via internet, just what Ithink of the company,
Great believer in name and shaming,
"If justisfied."
John.
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Re: Dry Cleaning ****-up

I've been defused .

I picked up the jacket and took it to their other branch to see the manager. He knew I was coming and had time to prepare himself but nevertheless, he was professional, apologetic and sympathetic - in other words, I didn't immediately get all the 'well we gave you some buttons for free and you did sign the disclaimer, don't blame us' crap. He explained how these things can happen, infact a dry cleaning machine was right behind him in the shop, doing the biz. It didn't seem overloaded or anything like that. I think it's just 'one of those things', the clothes go into a big drum, like a domestic washing machine, but with solvent instead of water. The clothes do get heavy with the solvent which can place a strain on fabric and peripherals like buttons, and there is even actually a spin cycle too, again like a domestic machine. There was a sign up on his wall saying that buttons can come off (I don't remember it being up in the other shop though) and he had even kept the buttons to show me how they broke, which strangely enough, made me feel better, as if he hadn't tried to 'get rid of the evidence'.

He said would I like to leave the jacket with him, and he will personally try to get rid of one or two faint stains remaining, plus he will sew some more buttons on, so that there is a complete match all over the jacket? I said yes. The guy was mid-50's, Italian I think - which helped! I got the impression from the way he handled the jacket, that he had been 'in the trade' in some way for many years.

The important thing is, I got the impression he cared and it's my old man's jacket, 'nuff said. I feel a lot better now, thanks for the response guys. Funny, isn't it, it seems like such a small thing but small things can mean a lot.
 
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Re: Dry Cleaning ****-up

Best go go back tonight and petrol bomb the shop though, just to be on the safe side.
 
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Re: Dry Cleaning ****-up

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I've been defused .

The important thing is, I got the impression he cared and it's my old man's jacket, 'nuff said. I feel a lot better now, thanks for the response guys. Funny, isn't it, it seems like such a small thing but small things can mean a lot.
Glad all well Max
Small things do matter,
not many people look at the smaller things in life.
Just the large glossy packing.

John.
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Re: Dry Cleaning ****-up

It makes all the difference when someone is prepared to listen and makes a point of showing that they do give a dam. Well done for not letting them get away with it.
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