Tips For Cleaning And Storing Your Silk And Wool Garments

Posted on: 13 July 2016

Whether it is a whimsical silk blouse or a comfy wool sweater, nothing compares to the feeling of a luxurious material on your skin. If your wardrobe is quickly outgrowing your closet space, you may be considering placing your delicate, luxurious items in a storage unit. In order to prevent damage, it is vital that you store these delicate fabrics correctly. Here is how to store some of your favorite luxurious garments, and why it is so important to wash the pieces first:

Why You Should Wash the Garments Prior to Storage

There are many reasons why you should always properly clean your garments prior to placing them into a secure storage unit. One of the most obvious reasons is that if you put the clean garments in the storage unit, you can bring them home and automatically enjoy the pieces without having to place them in the washer.

However, there are two other, more important reasons why you should always launder your clothing before placing them into storage. All of the sweat, body oils and perfumes that are left on your soiled garments can lead to damage and discoloration. Additionally, these odors are very attractive to insects. These insects will then call your clothing home, which causes additional damage.

Cleaning and Storing Silk

Washing silk correctly is vital to avoid causing any damage or shrinkage. This is why it is important to always hand wash your silk garments and, unless otherwise suggested on the garment's label, never have your pieces dry cleaned. The chemicals used in dry cleaning can severely damage silk.

To clean your silk, fill a basin on your clean kitchen sink with cold water and a few drops of liquid laundry soap that is formulated for use on silk. Submerge the garment and gently work the soapy liquid into the fabric with your fingers.

Rinse off the garment until the water runs clear. Lay down a towel and lay the garment flat on top. Gently roll the towel to eliminate the excess liquid. Hang the garment to dry in a cool spot.

Once the garment is completely dry, it is okay to store it. The best way to store your silk garment in your unit is to fold the piece and slip it inside a breathable cotton bag. Wrapping the garment in acid-free tissue paper will also work. It is vital the silk garment is stored in a cool, dry place. Avoid storing the garments in a plastic bin because it will cause discoloration.

Cleaning and Storing Wool

Before you wash your wool garment, it is vital to read the label's directions. If it's acceptable to machine wash the wool, go ahead and use a mild soap designed for use with this fabric. However, if hand washing is recommended, here are the steps you should take to prevent damage or shrinkage:

  • Fill a basin with warm water and add two tablespoons of a liquid laundry soap designed for use on wool. Lower the clothing into the water and gently work it through the garment.
  • Pull the garment from the water and lay it flat on a clean towel. Gently roll the towel and squeeze to eliminate the excess water.
  • Lay the garment flat and using your hands, gently tug on the garment to fluff the wool and bring it back to its original shape. The garment should be laid flat in a cool, dry place and allowed to air dry completely.

Now that your garment is clean and dry, it's time to place it in storage. When it comes to wool, the most important thing is to prevent shrinking, discoloration and moth damage. To prevent moth damage and discoloration that is caused by condensation, Martha Stewart recommends first encasing the garments in cotton cloth. Next, place the garments in a plastic bin with a tight-fitting lid.

Whether you're placing your favorite silk dress or a wool suit in a storage unit, it is important to learn how to properly clean and store the garments to prevent damage. For information on storage unit rental, contact a company like National Self Storage - Denver.


Discussing Storage Units

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