Although many are enjoying spring and preparing for summer, there are a few homemaking tasks that can't be ignored. One important one - and pay attention - is the storing and care of your cashmere sweaters. Follow these simple guidelines to ensure your cashmere continues to look and feel good for years to come.
It’s a bit of a misnomer to dry clean your cashmere – in most cases, you are actually better to hand or (delicate) machine wash it yourself. Whenever possible, air out your cashmere instead of washing it. Always handwash or machine wash using cold (or lukewarm). You can machine wash on a delicate cycle (cold water), however, machine washing can be very harsh on the fabric’s delicate structure. Don’t wash cashmere in hot water. Not only will it shrink but it will become “matted” as the fibres shrink together.
Use a good cashmere wash/detergent – we like THE LAUNDRESS which is nontoxic, biodegradable, and allergen-free. It’s money well spent to ensure the longevity of your garment. Their detergents contain cedar iwhich should help keep away moths and bugs.
Turn your garment inside out before you wash it. This will allow surface fibres to rub together during the wash, thereby mending any loose ones.
Don’t hang your cashmere on a washing line to dry. It will stretch in length and distort irreversibly, while sunlight will also bleach the colour of your garment. Dry it flat by laying it on a towel.
Packing and Storing
Store your cashmere folded or rolled in a dry, cool and secure area like drawers. Lavender and cedar are natural moth and bug repellents, so pop a sachet alongside in your drawer.
When travelling, remember that the less number of folds you put in, the better, as this will lessen creasing and loss of shape.
Pilling is normal for a new cashmere; so don’t worry if some accumulate (often under the arms or where you carry your handbag). Using a cashmere brush, comb or a razor, very lightly run it along the affected areas and then just shake the garment.
Don’t over-wear your cashmere between washes as it will lose its shape. Equally, don’t over-wash your cashmere. Knitwear doesn’t need to be washed after every time you wear it.