Winter is coming. Errrr, I mean ending (for my Game of Thrones fans - forgive me).
So winter is coming to a close. Our winter sweaters have been well loved. Our closets overflow with boots, wool, and scarves. It's time to get our closets prepped for Spring!
How to Spot Treat, Clean, and Prep Winter Sweaters for Storage
1. THE SPOT TREATMENT
Go over sweaters well, and separate out which ones need some spot cleaning. You don't want to store them for a year with stains. This is your chance to get them up to snuff again!
We need to stain treat those bad boys!
If you are like me, the stain doesn't always get spotted right away. I pull it out after a year of storage and find a mysterious stain that really bums me out. Let's do this the right way, and head off those stains together. You will need to know the type of material your sweater is made of, a best guess at the type of stain, and a hella good game plan to tackle that stain right out of your clothes. I've got your game plan!
TYPE OF SWEATER MATERIAL
Cotton / Cotton blend
TYPES OF STAINS
Common types of stains and treatment recommendation
Winter Sweater Spot Treatment is good for:
Using the lists above, make your judgment call on the best stain plan of attack, and knock them out one by one. And remind yourself that it is always best to stain treat right away. And then laugh because we are moms and that's not reality 99% of the time.
2. THE WASH CYCLE
I also use the Winter Sweater Spot Treatment above to also gently hand wash all my sweaters to rid them of smells, body oils, and sweat. Alternatively, you can look at your garment care instructions, and go ahead and wash in your washing machine's gentle cycle if the garment can take it.
Hand Wash Instructions:
1. Fill tub about 1/4 full of tepid water.
DO NOT USE HOT WATER ON WOOL AND CASHMERE! (Unless you plan to gift your toddler with your sweater.)
2. Add 3/4 cup of vinegar and 1/2 teaspoon of Dawn dish soap. Mix gently.
3. Add sweater. Swish around gently. Let soak for about 5 minutes.
4. Gently squeeze out excess water.
4. Lay flat on towel to dry.
Note: A full wash is not recommended for your coats, blazers, etc. These should only be spot treated, and then taken to the dry cleaner for overall cleaning, when necessary.
3. THE STORAGE SOLUTION
Hey, now that you have fresh smelling sweaters, it's time to hide them away!
Guess who is interested in your sweaters hidden in dark corners? Bugs. Moths more specifically. Guess what moths don't like? Freshly laundered sweaters. They are attracted to sweat and grime. So that's a bonus since we don't have those any longer.
Here's my recommendation to store sweaters to ensure you pull them out next fall looking like you just grabbed them at the store:
1. Fold neatly.
2. Place in plastic storage tubs or plastic storage bags. If using tubs, choose ones that fit where convenient for you - under the bed, top of the closet, out in the garage / attic / basement. If storing out in the garage / attic / basement, you must have a tight seal on the tubs.
3. Place a piece of cedar wood, mothball, or my personal favorite, a sachet of lavender in the storage container.