Sweater season in the South lasts significantly less time than our friends in New England or even the Midwest. Most years December through mid-February is our window for wearing chunky knits, cashmere, and wool. So when it comes to caring for my beautiful sweaters I have to put a bit more work into them because they're in storage for 3/4 of the year.
Today I want to share my strategies for sweater care and why it's important to invest, not only in your garments but also the proper tool to care for them.
The Tools You'll Need
Over the past few years I've had a bit of a shift in how I care for my garments and have sought out and researched the differences of laundry products, what dry cleaning actually does to a garment, and tool that make all the differences.
My favorite tools and products for sweater care include:
My Sweater Care Process
Once I knew the tools that worked for me, it's a really simple process of getting my sweaters ready for storage.
- Start by pulling out all the sweaters that need washing before storage.
- Wash each sweater by hand using The Laundress Wool & Cashmere Shampoo. I've found even if you have a blended sweater or a polyester one, this wash is so easy on the fibers it's work just as well!
- I hand wash the sweaters because some just can't make it through on the washing machine. Hand washing knits extends the life of your garment (because the fibers won't break down as quickly).
- The next step is important: lay flat to dry. Obviously you should never put a sweater in the dryer because of shrinkage, but if you put it on a hanger to dry you'll pull out the shoulders. I like to use a drying rack and lay it over the top.
- Once the sweater is fully dry I pull out my cedar chips and a zippered storage tote, fold up the sweaters and store them in the tote.
Note: cedar chips (not shavings, but nice pieces of cedar) are natural moth repellers. If you're worried about moths getting into your sweaters, pieces of smooth cedar always work for me. You can find them on Amazon.