It is generally fine to wash your quilt in a home washing machine, though for a very large quilt you may need a commercial size machine. To wash a quilt, use cold water and a mild detergent (that is free of perfumes, brighteners, and bleach). Run the machine on a short gentle cycle. To keep the colors bright, add half a cup of vinegar to the wash cycle.
On a new quilt you may note white or gray lines running through the quilting. These quilting markings are part of the process quilters use here to make sure the quilting is properly applied to the quilt. If a line is white, it is probably chalk and can be brushed off or easily removed with a damp cloth. Also the first time your quilt is washed or dry cleaned the chalk marks will disappear. If the lines are gray they were probably made with a pencil and can be removed with a gum eraser. Quilting marking is part of the craft of Lancaster quilts.
Before washing or dry cleaning your quilt it is wise to inspect your quilt for seams that have come loose and repair them prior to the washing or dry cleaning.
When not in use your quilt should be stored in a dry, dark location in a cotton or muslin bag -- never store your quilt in a plastic bag or cardboard box. The muslin bag we provide with each of our bed quilts is intended to be used for this purpose. For wall hangings a cotton pillow case should be used. Be sure the quilt is clean before you store it away. Every other month or so it is a good idea to take the quilt out and refold it another way before putting it back in the bag. When you take your quilt out of storage, air it out. Lay it on the grass and let the sun penetrate it, or tumble it in a cool dryer for a short time.