Handle With Care: 5 Tips For Caring For Your Fine Garments



A little TLC can go a long way in preserving your favorite pieces in excellent condition for years. You've made an investment in your wardrobe and took the time to carefully consider your purchases. With some thoughtful care they will be giving you joy and looking great as long as you have them. Here are a few of our top tips:

1. Wood hangers are best for your garments.

Clothing tends to hang better on wood hangers, keeping garment shape. Thicker and sloped more closely to the natural shape of shoulders, they help keep the form of the garment and avoid shoulder bubbles caused by other types of hangers. Wood hangers are also preferred for their durability and aesthetic appeal.

2.  Avoid the dryer. Hang or lay garments flat to dry.

 This is best for all your garments that are washable. The heat of machine dryers weakens fibers over time, and may cause fading in some garments. Foldable drying racks are easy to find and they don't take up much space (See suggestions in the links below.)  You'll also find that less ironing is necessary when you hang dry.




3. Place dryer sheets in your garment storage boxes.

Dryer sheets not only make your clothes smell fresh, but also deter insects. They work great in suitcases, the bottom of the laundry basket, and spread out in a closet, too.

4. Choose products with enzymes for washing your clothes

Enzymes perform well washing at lower temperatures (which also extends the life of your garments). They were introduced into the market as ingredients in cleaning products in the early 1960's, but have recently gained popularity and attention for their efficiency and environmental friendliness. Enzymes are easily biodegradable and have no negative environmental impact.

Enzymes work to improve the whiteness of cotton fabrics by severing off damaged cotton fibers preventing soil from being trapped in the fibers that cause greying. Cellulases enzymes break down cellulose improving the appearance of fabric, both the color and smoothness of the surface. The benefits of using enzyme based products are multi-fold. However, enzyme products are not recommended for silk and wool fabrics. Over time enzymes would degrade protein based fibers (those coming from animals) such as these. For silk and wool, and any animal derived fabric look for specific recommendation on the labels of cleaning products. They are generally found on products labeled for "delicate fabrics".

Dirty Labs sells an enzyme booster powder that you can add to the drum of the washing machine before placing your clothes in. Use it in addition to your regular laundry detergent.  The Laundress is a highly rated brand offering enzyme based laundry detergents. These are just some products we like that get the job done well.




5. Try handwashing more of your garments. 

Less friction from spinning and agitation in the machine will help extend the life of your garments. Handwashing is a more gentle way to clean your clothes, and more effective at spot cleaning stains. Liquid soaps dissolve better for hand washing since they don't require as much agitation as powders to dissolve. Hand washing your laundry is not as labor intensive as it seems. Whether you use a sink or bucket, most of the work is done in the soaking stage. Gentle squeezing and swishing is enough unless you are dealing with a stain. Once you get into it, you may even find hand-laundering your clothes cathartic.

Fleur De lis Glamorous Wash by Tyler Candle Company is a beautiful smelling product we tested and recommend. ( https://tylercandlestore.com/fleur-de-lis-glamorous-wash-16-oz.html ).

Keeping your wardrobe in top shape will sharpen your appearance and if you decide to resell your pieces later their condition will be appreciated.  The extra effort is well worth it.