How to take care of knitwear — in 6 easy steps
Words by Alice Florence Orr
Five Minute Read
How do I look after my quality knitwear?
From keeping us cosy to completing an outfit, your pullovers certainly pull their weight. So it feels even worse when you stretch, pill or shrink your favourite sweater. Investing in quality materials, ethical production and true craftsmanship will ensure your pieces last as long as possible — but there are little things you can do to protect your knitwear, year after year.
Buttery-soft and luxuriously warm, knitwear is essential in our wardrobes. Love your knitwear for longer by following these simple guidelines.
Hand-washing is the only method that will ensure you avoid shrinkage. Use tepid water and a gentle detergent, preferably one that's natural and non-toxic. Soak for 5-10 minutes before pressing out excess water with a clean towel.
After washing, dry your knitwear flat on a clean surface using towels to absorb excess moisture. Be careful to avoid stretching the material. Don't wring it out.
A daily touch-up with a tough bristled wool brush will keep your knitwear tidy. Make sure to be gentle with the pressure you apply. Forget what you heard, pilling isn’t a sign of poor quality, small bobbles will form on all knits eventually due to the friction of wear — if the fabric has started to show signs of wear, use a cashmere comb to carefully remove any imperfections.
Don't be tempted to hang your knitwear. Gravity will stretch the fibres out of shape, so make sure to store your woollen pieces by folding them and keeping them on a dry, clean shelf. Keep them away from damp, steam or windows to avoid deterioration.
To pack them away for the season, use a clothing bag with a zip. Better yet, use an airtight vacuum bag that will keep out dust, moisture and insects.
The best way to repair a jumper is to catch those snags before they turn into holes. Darn any loose wool with matching yarn. If a hole has already appeared, stitch the yarn in both a horizontal and vertical pattern to close the gap.
Rotate your sweaters so that they don't lose their shape. Just like people, knitwear needs a break too.
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