As we come to the end of another season, I have been thinking about sharing how I care for my Winter garments – especially when they are to be packed away until the next time round.
All garments need to be cleaned, even if you think they look ok. But remember, unwashed clothing may cause mould and begin to smell, causing staining and yellowing. Many people drop most of their bulky winter garments at the drycleaners - it saves time but can become costly.
So, here are some of my washing tips for you.
1. Woollens - scarves and jumpers, dresses and coats, I do the following:
- Pop into a bucket with lukewarm water and a wool mix (for knit wool dresses and coats use the bath tub instead)
- Swish them around gently several times
- Empty the bucket
- Repeat with fresh water until the water is soap free.
- Roll them up in a dry towel and gently squeeze out the excess water.
- Lay flat out of the sun to dry.
2. Puffer jackets
- Treat any stains first, especially around the neck and under arms,
- Pop in the washing machine on a gentle cycle and gentle spin.
- I do this on a hot day and hang on a coat hanger on the clothesline.
It’s very important to make sure everything is completely dry before you pack it away.
Storage – in labelled storage tubs
When it comes to storing my knits, I place the heavier garments on the bottom of the storage tub and the lighter articles on top. I like to pop tissue paper in between each layer to make sure there is no colour transfer.
I like to hang my wool coats in a calico or cotton bag, which stops them from sweating in the extreme summer heat.
Over the years I have accumulated a wide range of boots. They are all in great condition, some going back to the late ‘70s. Leather boots can last for years if you look after them well, especially when they are stored away properly. I follow this process to care for my boots.
If the soles need to be repaired or they need to be reheeled I usually address that as the cooler month are approaching, before putting away in storage.
2. Cleaning - they need to be cleaned inside and out before storing
- I wipe the inside with antibacterial wipes.
- Clean the outside with leather cleaner and then leather conditioner.
- After cleaning I like to stuff them with tissue paper so they keep their shape. (The paper absorbs any moisture that may occur from the heat over the summer months. It also stops the leather from shrinking and helps retain the shape.)
- Most importantly, I make sure they are dry before I store them away.
Taking care of your investments will ensure that you will be able to enjoy wearing them in years to come.