Cleaning a Toy with a Music Box Inside

Updated on December 21, 2009
L.M. asks from Porterville, CA
8 answers

My daughter is 16 months old. She has a giraffe she HAS to have when she sleeps at night and for her naps. The problems is it smells. She has sucked on the tag since birth, which is located on it's butt. I have hand washed it as best as I can but it still smells. I do not want to throw it in the washer because it has a music box inside that I do not want to ruin. I can not find a replacement. I thought about unstiching a small section and removing the music box but I am not a wonderful seamstress and I am afraid I will not sew it back up too well after putting the box in after washing it. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. I currently hand wash it with Oxy Clean and it works for a day or so then the smell returns.

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So What Happened?

Hi Ladies,
Thanks for all the fast responses. I however was not able to use any of them. My computer decided to take a vacation and I was not able to log on and view the suggestions. I did find something that worked. I used vinegar, Oxy Clean, and detergent (purex). It worked wonders. I used too much vinegar as the giraffe has a hint of vinegar smell. Thank you once again for being so prompt!!!!!!

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answers from Lynchburg on

I've heard you can hand wash toys like that with a water/vinegar/baking soda mix and that it works wonderfully, but I've never personally tried it. I believe it's like 1 cup of water (really hot initially-almost boiling, but not quite), 1 cup of vinegar and 2 tbsp of baking soda. Hope you find something that works!

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answers from Washington DC on

I accidentally ran Potty Elmo through the washer, and he's still "going."



answers from Washington DC on

Have you tried to search online for the toy? If you know the store it was purchased, then look it up online. If you find it order 2 or so. The problem you run with brand new is that it's different! Your daughter is used to the smell and my have a problem with it being washed. I do agree you should clean it, but be prepared for her to be upset about a different smell!
Good luck!



answers from Washington DC on

Put the toy into a large plastic bag and dump a box of baking soda on it. Close the bag and then shake the daylights out of it. Let it sit in the bag for a few hours. Then take it out and brush off the baking soda and shake it out well. Please do not spray it with Fabreeze since your child putts the toy in her mouth.


answers from Washington DC on

baking soda, vinegar, vigorous scrubbing with a toothbrush. wipe it away with a damp cloth, then leave to dry in the sun.



answers from Norfolk on

What about Lysol and sunlight?



answers from Washington DC on

Another idea:
Since you say you're not much of a needlewoman, find one to help you out. Here in VA a lot of our little dry cleaner shops also do alterations/tailoring. Find one near you/with a good reputation, take the giraffe in and talk to them. Ask if you open it up on a seam and wash it, can they sew it up back up. I would wait while it's being done, don't leave it and come back for it if you can help it.

You also may want to consider replacing or 'supplementing' the stuffing while you have it open. You can buy stuffing of various kinds at your local craft or fabric stores.

This is a short-term solution, so you'll also want to check out the other suggestion to try and buy another or two of the giraffe to keep in reserve.

Good luck!

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