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Rolling with the Seasons
10/3/2003

Question:

The seasons are changing...do you have any tips on how I should manage my wardrobe?

Answer:

The colder months are rolling in slowly and the seasonal summer stains are being put on ice and replaced with the stains and hassles of winter. As the temperature begins to drop, it is time to consider the end-of-summer changeover and prepare yourself for some of the festivities of the fall and winter months. Out with the summer season and in with winter. Here are few tips and considerations to think about when rolling with the seasons.

Cleaning Out the Closet
After a long slumber, your fall and winter clothes will need to be awakened and taken out of storage. Depending on how careful and attentive you were last spring when packing them away, you may have had some unwanted visitors over the summer months and will want to check your garments for signs of insect damage. Insects such as moths, beetles, and cockroaches tend to feed on clothes that were not cleaned properly before storing. Look for small holes, worn areas, and discolored lines on the portions of the garment that had spills or stains that were never removed. The odor from moth balls or crystals is difficult to remove. Try airing the garments by hanging them outside in the shade. If this does not completely remove the odor, cleaning the garments may help.

Winter Wardrobe
The content of your wardrobe will change along with the changing seasons. Short skirts and short sleeve shirts will be replaced with winter coats and scarves. Following some of these cleaning tips might be found useful. When it comes to cleaning, the first and easiest step to take to ensure the best cleaning is to follow the care labels. Many of your garments will be hand or machine washable. Minimize agitation to prevent matting and pilling of napped fabrics. Knits may require blocking to return them to their original size. Follow recommended drying temperatures. Other materials, such as wool, fur, and leather, will require the assistance of a professional cleaner due to special cleaning and pressing procedures. Make sure to point out any known stains when you leave them with the cleaner.

Halloween Costumes
Along with the cooler weather and good food that accompanies the winter months, you are also sure to be plagued by unforeseen stains during the celebrations of the winter months. Halloween is the first of the festivities to arrive and getting stains out of some costumes can be a hair-raising experience. If a care label is present on the costume, follow the instructions carefully. Many of these garments, however, are custom made with various fabrics and trims and have no care instructions. If that is the case, carefully examine the garment for possible trouble spots. Many stains caused by cosmetics, paints, hair colorings, and even foods and beverages will get best results when pre-treated. Many waxes or crayons, unfortunately, are not easily removed by home stain removal and may need solvent-based treatments to remove the stains. Consult your dry cleaner if you are not sure what the best procedure would be.

Quick tips to remember:

  • For some costumes, unusual trims or features may need to be removed prior to washing or drycleaning.
  • Hand washing may be safer for some costumes.
  • After washing, hang costumes to dry instead of tossing them in the dryer. Next time you change over from summer to fall, think about these tips and considerations and spend your winter months getting the best out of your winter wardrobe.

 

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