Love your cashmere sweaters, or just want to keep yours around forever without destroying them? Understood. Now read on!
Treatments and Washing
• When you get ready to wash your clothes, separate knitwear when you sort laundry. If you throw a sweater in the washing machine, it won’t last long! Anything that could be harmed by catches or snags should be thrown into a protective bag before it gets into the wash.
• Avoid washing sweaters on hot settings, which can damage them pretty severely. And say no to tumble dryers, too! I speak from experience. They can affect wool so severely that the item will shrink beyond recognition.
• Handwash items if you can. It may be time consuming, but it will save your more expensive articles like cashmere.
To Handwash a Sweater
1. Fill a sink or tub with lukewarm water, and follow the instructions on your fine garment wash like Woolite, for example.
2. Swish your hands in the water to create suds, and add your sweater to the water.
3. Soak your sweater for about 20 minutes in the basin.
4. Remove the sweater and rinse it thoroughly.
5. Place the sweater on a clean towel.
6. Fold the towel in half and then roll it.
7. After a few minutes, lay your towel out flat and shape it carefully.
8. Dry your sweater on a sweater rack and let it air dry out of direct sunlight and indoors.
Tip: Don’t wring out your sweaters, which can permanently distort their shape.
Tip: You can wash more than one sweater at a time, but just make sure that they’re similar in color.
• Brush your sweaters once they’re dry. Use a small soft brush on cashmere, acrylic, and lambswool to take care of fluff and hairs. You can also use a lint brush to remove pills.
• While dry cleaning sweaters is definitely an option, it won’t extend the life of your knitwear.
• Iron sweaters on a low setting, and if you iron wool, make sure that you “knead” the sweater once you’re done to set it and prepare it for wearing.
• Storing your sweater? Be sure to wash and dry it before you store it, and then wrap it in acid-free paper before it goes in a special storage box.
Tip: Stay away from mothballs. They smell strong, and you can get the same effects from a lavender sweater wash. Both cedar and lavender repel moths, and they’re natural.