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The Family Jewels

Sweater Care 101

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Yeah!! It’s sweater weather. My favourite time of year. My husband will tell you that I have WAY to many sweaters in my closet, which is simply not true. He just doesn’t have enough šŸ˜‰

I have been asked by almost every client I work with about how to care for sweaters, what to do about pilling, and what materials to buy/avoid. Given the change in temperature, I thought this would be an ideal time to touch on the subject.

We ALL have pilling sweaters in our closets. The truth of the matter is, you can’t completely avoid it. Regardless of the pricetag, sweaters are going to pill at least a little bit. As we typically wear sweaters in the fall/winter and often times have a coat or another layer on top, the two materials rub together, loosening the fibres. This is incredibly frustrating, especially if it happens after only a few wears.

Here are a few tips on how to resolve the issue..

  1. Before buying a sweater, look at what the material is. Synthetic fibres such as acrylic, nylon, and rayon do not wear as well, and will pill much faster. The affordable price tag draws us in, but they typically do not last more than one (maybe two) seasons.
  2. Wearing a coat on top with a lining inside (especially a silk blend) will help protect the fibres in the sweater, therefore will not show signs of wear as quickly.
  3. READ THE CARE INSTRUCTIONS!!! If it says dry clean, do not attempt to wash, even in cold water. Sweaters are the one clothing item in my closet that I do not risk messing around with when it comes to laundering them. Often times you will risk having shrinkage, and unless you are only about cropped sweaters, just don’t do it!!
  4. Fold instead of hang. This can be difficult for some depending on closet space, but if you can make it work, it’s worth it. Sweaters will stay to their true form when folded as opposed to when they are on a hanger, and risk having the neck/shoulders strectched out. The loose knit or fine knits do this very easily, so fold if possible for longevity!
  5. Buy a de-piller. Since we already know it is going to happen eventually, purchase a de-piller to remove the pills yourself. Instead of tossing what you consider to be a “worn looking” sweater, use this tool to bring life back to your favourite pieces. The reviews on this one are very good.