Though the temperatures may suggest otherwise, it’s officially springtime! Depending on where you live, you may still need your winter gear for a few more weeks (fingers crossed it’s way less than that), but soon enough you’ll be shedding those layers for good. As you get ready to whip out your warm weather wardrobe, be sure to take proper care of your down jacket and cozy sweaters because you will need them again next season. Here are the pointers you need to know when it comes to putting your winter clothing into storage!
Wash everything—especially your coats!
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realize you should probably wash the clothes you’re about to put away for months, but you can easily forget if you’re in a rush to say goodbye anything winter-related! By winter’s end, your main coat has probably gone through the ringer. Whether it’s a wool cocoon coat or down parka, give it one last thorough wash. Letting any stains sit on the fabric for too long could make them permanent. Make sure to read the label on your jacket; most wool coats must be dry cleaned as do delicate sweaters. If you’re machine washing a down coat, throw some tennis balls into the dryer to prevent the stuffing from clumping together.
Avoid creases and folds in your tall boots by using shapers.
The last thing you want to find out in the fall is that your favorite pair of leather boots are now slouchy boots. You have nothing against slouchy boots, but it’s not exactly what you had in mind for your tall riding boots. Retailers like Amazon and Bed Bath & Beyond sell an array of shapers that will help your boots retain their shape. If your aim is just to keep them standing upright, fabric shapers are a cute and practical option. For a firmer shape holder, try the plastic variety or even a boot rack. Rolled up newspapers or magazines work fine too if you’re on an extra tight budget.
Fend off moths with cedar blocks and lavender sachets.
Even if you’ve never actually seen one lurking in your closet, moths problems do exist and can be pretty bad. These pesky insects must have a vendetta against us because one day you have a pristine wool or cashmere sweater and the next you have a half eaten garment with holes everywhere. Mothballs are the classic remedy, but they can smell far from pleasant, so try hanging cedar blocks or lavender sachets instead. But for the ultimate protection, your best move is to store moth-prone clothing in airtight bins or bags, which brings us to our next point…
Clothing and moisture don’t mix well!
Regardless of the type of fabric, clothing should not be stored in a potentially moist environment, otherwise you’re putting it at risk for mold and mildew. If you’ve kept your winter wear in the attic or basement in previous years, you might want to find it a new home this time. If limited closet space is an issue for you, purchase some underbed drawers or inexpensive, yet sturdy plastic bags to hold your most precious pieces.
Hang up coats, but fold sweaters.
Big coats can take up a lot of closet space, but stuffing them in a drawer or bag is a sure way to create hard-to-remove wrinkles and folds. When it comes to sweaters though, fold them instead! Unless you have magical hangers, most sweaters are bound to fall victim to the dreaded “shoulder bump.” Plus they’re safer in drawers anyway, as they won’t snag on velcro from your coat or any other abrasive objects.