With 80-degree temperatures in January, it seems like winter may have passed us over this year. All the more reason to get ready early to store your winter clothes. If you want to look as good next year as you did this season, you’ll want to follow these guidelines.
Always Clean Clothes Before Storing
Wash clothes made of cotton, linen, and polyester. Dry clean wool, cashmere, silk, and rayon (and we happen to know the perfect place to get the job done – Flair Cleaners). Always dry clean any item with special trims or a mix of fabrics too. We know it seems like a chore, especially since you won’t be using these clothes for months, but, clean clothes mean stains won’t set. Dirty garments deteriorate with time, and left-over body oil can lead to discoloration and attract unwanted bugs and odors.
Tip: Professionally dry cleaning your clothes is always a better option than washing them. Doing so prolongs a garment’s life, prevents yellowing, and is overall more convenient — no stress, no mess.
Let The Fabric Decide
To hang or to fold? That is the question. Always fold natural fiber fabrics, including items like cashmere and wool. Fold clothes made of acrylic and poly fibers, too. Use acid-free tissue between each piece to avoid wrinkling. Hanging these materials can lead to unwanted stretching. Hang jackets, coats, and fabrics like silk or cotton. Oh, and never hang leather. Doing so can result in permanent creases.
Tip: Never leave clothes in plastic garment bags; use ones made of cotton instead. Clothes left in plastic bags trap moisture and promote mildew growth. Cotton bags allow them to breathe.
Plastic Or Cardboard?
It’s always tempting to store off-season clothing in cardboard boxes. We get it; they’re free and you probably have plenty to re-use from your online shopping orders. But, the glue in cardboard is acidic and attracts insects. They’re also susceptible to water damage. So, despite all the boxes you’ve been saving, it’s best to store clothes in sealed plastic bins.
Also avoid packing your clothes with mothballs. Contrary to popular belief, mothballs are actually bad for storing clothing. They smell, and the fumes are hazardous to humans. Use lemon zest shavings, lavender sachets, or cedar to repel pests and keep your clothes smelling fresh.
Tip: Don’t pack your bins too tight. Leave room for the clothes to breathe and allow for ventilation.
Embrace The Dark
Never store off-season clothes in the garage, basement, or attic. Extreme temperatures cause fiber damage. And if your winter gear is exposed to the sun, most likely they will fade. To maintain your winter wear style, store your clothes somewhere cool, dark, and ventilated.
Tip: We recommend storing your clothes in plastic comforter bags underneath the bed.
And remember, just because it’s been unseasonably warm, winter can creep back into the forecast. So, make sure a few outfits are easily accessible just in case it gets unexpectedly cold.