Your Toolkit– tips on how to care for your clothes.
Taking care of your clothes at home is a good investment to the lifespan. This also has important benefits for the environment, such as helping to reduce our contribution to fashion’s carbon footprint and worldwide waste in landfills. But whether clothing is new or second-hand, an everyday item or a special heirloom, all clothing lasts much longer with some simple, basic maintenance. And, more importantly, it saves you money!
To help you invest in your clothes, we have compiled a straightforward guide on how to care for your clothes, using only a few easy techniques.
1. How to wash your clothes?
It is recommended to use hot water only when removing bacteria and cold to gently clean delicate and bright coloured garments. The temperature of the water plays an important role in the maintenance of your clothes.
It is also very important to read the care labels affixed with the clothing. More importantly follow the care instructions on the label to ensure the lifespan of your garment. Check whether you can hand wash them, machine wash them or Dry-clean.
It is suggested to use eco-laundry powders and detergents. Research shows that excessive detergent may damage the garment. For example, adding too much soap to your washing machine can prevent your clothes from getting clean, or worse not wash them at all.
It is also recommended to wash your clothes inside out, in particularly, jeans to keep colour from fading.
An old tradition that may work for you, avoid using chlorine bleach, and substitute one half-cup of vinegar to the final rinse. Vinegar is known to naturally brighten clothes and will not wear out the fibres of your clothing.
Also, don’t let stains set. The longer a stain stays, the more likely it will stick. Prevent this with immediate treatment using natural laundry stain removers. Simply saturate set-in stains with vinegar, rub the spot with a paste made from equal parts vinegar and baking soda, and pop in the washer for a cool rinse.
Shirt collars also require attention. It’s here that stains can creep up from skin products, like skin lotions or makeup. Be sure to wash them immediately, especially before hanging shirts in the closet.
And finally, brush suits after every wear to eliminate dust and grime which can damage the fabric.
It is important to note that hot water is not recommended for all Tema Moda Clothing.
2. Air dry.
Try to avoid tumble drying, which also uses a lot of energy to run and damage the fibres in the clothes. It is best to air dry clothes by hanging them on the washing line. And not only does it smell great, but air drying is also better for your clothes and the planet.
Again, pay attention to clothing labels as some garments, such as woollen jumpers, might be better dried flat.
3. Ironing Techniques.
Learn how to care for your clothes properly with the following basic ironing process:
- Check the wash care label on the garment to understand if the garment can be ironed.
- Then, check the product manual of your garment steamers or irons for correct usage instructions.
- For your regular clothes, check the wash care label on your garment to see the appropriate ironing temperature.
- Finally, set an ironing order to make the work efficient. You may go by the order of collar, cuffs and then the rest of the areas.
4. Store Properly.
Clothes need to breath too - especially those with natural fibres such as cotton, linen, silk and wool. Keep your clothes in dry condition - humid climates provide conditions for mould to grow, so keep the doors of your clothes open sometimes to allow air circulation. Also, after washing your garments, make sure they are completely dry before storing them away.
While hanging them retains their shape and keeps them wrinkle-free, make sure you’re using wooden or padded hangers. Heavy garments like sweaters may be folded instead so they don’t stretch out.
Also, the width of the hanger is important too. The hanger should not overpass the width of the shirt shoulders. And to give your clothes breathing space, store the hangers a little apart in the closet.
5. Support Your Local Tailor.
Repair any damage to a garment when you first notice it. As the saying goes a stitch in time saves 9. This will not only keep the item out of landfill and in a wearable state but will increase the lifespan of the item as the damage will likely get worse over time if left unresolved.
Give a facelift to clothes that you think may require it. A simple alteration like taking in at the waist or shortening a full-length dress into a midi dress may look fresh and become a new outfit. Also, your local tailor will be able to do things such as dropped hems, change the zips, or take things in and let them out. You could also learn a few sewing techniques from watching a few YouTube - “how to” videos and do some of the sewing yourself – especially dropped hems.
6. When travelling – pack them well.
A few tips to understand when packing your clothes.
- Button the shirt completely.
- Put a plastic or cardboard band — the kind that come inside new shirts from the store, or from the cleaners — inside the collar (to help support the collar and maintain its shape).
- With the shirt front-side down, place a sheet of paper or tissue paper on the back of the shirt before folding it (to avoid creases).
- When piling the shirts, alternate their direction.
By adopting a few good habits each day, could save your clothes and the planet too.