At this time of year, the leaves are falling, the mercury is dropping and the shops are alive with the new season fashions from the autumn/winter runways. Most of us are considering updating our wardrobes, adding those key pieces and retiring our summer garments in favour of cosy jumpers, leather skirts, ankle boots, scarves and a killer coat or two. We carefully select the items we want to add to our collections and sometimes we choose to invest a fair amount in that must-have, love forever piece. But whether your new season additions are designer labels or high street, in order to give them the greatest shelf life you need to look after them correctly.
We all acknowledge that we should be looking for pieces which will have longevity – sustainability and budget-wise, it’s a clever idea – and the key to that is really taking care of the new items you choose to add this season. So how do you care for all your clothes as if they are priceless couture?
Sort out your storage systems
Storing your clothes correctly is really important if you want to make sure they last. A treasured piece can quickly suffer if it’s not taken care of during the time you aren’t wearing it. But a lot of people simply don’t understand the best storage solutions for their garments. Always opt for slimline flocked velvet hangers for tops – these can stop silky fabrics slipping off the hanger. Coats and jackets should be stored on strong wooden hangers that will help them keep their shape. If you have some very special pieces, consider a garment bag to help preserve them – couture houses say that muslin ones are the only option as they are breathable fabric. If you want to store out of season items in storage boxes for the loft or under the bed, opt for acid-free tissue paper to wrap your clothes in.
Make more space
If the problem is simply that you don’t have enough space and your clothes are crammed into an over-full wardrobe, then it may be time to do a Marie Kondo and edit your selection a little more – research shows most people only wear 50 per cent of the clothes they own. Sometimes we simply don’t have adequate storage, so consider working with a specialist like rauch wardrobes to create a custom fit system which maximises the space in your home and allows you to store more items in a better way.
Your clothes also need to benefit from circulating air or the fabric may deteriorate. So have times where you leave the doors of your wardrobe open to allow the air to circulate freely. Never leave anything in the plastic wrap from the dry cleaners, as this can trap in gasses that will discolour certain items.
Keep shoes elevated
How many of us just have our shoes rammed carelessly into the bottom of our wardrobes? In fact, the floor isn’t your friend when it comes to taking care of your items – there’s a lot of moisture down at floor level, and this can result in mildew and mould – not things you want near those expensive leather and suede goods! Elevate your shoes and wrap leather items in acid-free tissue, and keep your handbags in their original dust bags or purchase new ones for them.
With your storage sorted, your items will be in perfect condition for rewearing and restyling, year after year.
Top photo by Sai De Silva on Unsplash