Updated: Jan 10
October is flying by, and it will soon be winter. Make sure your winter gear is ready to go when the last leaf falls ang the thermometer temperature drops.
Begin by using a lint brush to remove any surface lint (or dried salt from last year.) A wool coat should be dry cleaned (or cleaned per item tag) prior to the start of winter. Hang wool coats on wooden hangers to prevent the coat from stretching and make sure it has room to breathe in the closet, not packed into the closet with other items.
Wool Clothing (Sweaters/Pants)
Wool sweaters should be washed according to the label. Typically, wool sweaters tend to be a “dry clean only” item. However, there are some wool sweaters you can wash in a washing machine. Select the “wool cycle” or the delicate cycle with cool water.
Lay flat to dry, never put a wool sweater in the dryer and never use hot water or bleach on wool sweaters.
Wool pants should be dry cleaned and pressed professionally, to ensure the crisp crease.
Down Filled Jackets/Blankets
Top load washing machines can damage down items, using a front load washing machine is recommended whenb laundering down items.
Down items should be laundered according to the label, which tends to indicate laundering down items in the permanent press cycle. Adding only the recoomened amount of detergent, as excess detergent will leave residual soap on the items and will prevent the feathers from getting fluffy.
Dry down items on a lower heat cycle. Excessive heat can cause unnecessary wear to down-filled items. Tossing a few tennis balls into the dryer with down items will help break up any feather clumps.
The best way to launder wool knit items is to hand wash with shampoo and conditioner. Place knit items in lukewarm water mixed with a small amount of shampoo and conditioner for a minute or so, rinse and fill the sink again with clean lukewarm water and a bit of vinegar (which will help to protect the fibers.) Lay knit items flat to air dry.
Hats or gloves made of synthetic fibers, like acrylic, can be laundered in the washing machine on the delicate cycle. Turn the items inside out, use the delicate cycle and cool water. Lay these items flat to dry, as drying in the dryer can cause acrylic to pill.
Freshen up leather gloves without ruining them, use a bit of saddle soap with a damp paper towel and work the soap into the leather, use a new damp towel to wipe away the soap and leave to air dry.
To clean the inside of leather gloves, simply turn them inside-out and apply a few drops of Woolite or gentle detergent with a damp washcloth, wipe gently and use a clean damp washcloth to rinse the soap away.