With the astronomical spring beginning being exactly 15 days away, all I have on my mind is more sun, warmer days and brightly colored everything. The thought of the entire spring extravaganza brings all smiles to me. But all my cheer dampens the minute I look at my thick knits and the elaborate cleaning it would need soon. It's time I stow away all my thick wintry knits for the season.
I remember, back home as soon as the winter concluded, Mom would get underway of cleaning everyone's knits. There, she would have the house maids follow all her directions not limited to cleaning, drying , folding and stashing. Hence all work would be accomplished in no time. Since here, I am the sole performer, this would take forever it seems. I know there are a lot of other moms and single ladies who are agonizing the same. So to alleviate the cleaning jitters and to simplify the whole process I have a step by step method for us to follow:-
1) WASH GENTLY- Always clean the sweaters before storing them, because moths and carpet beetles feed off the sweats and stains. First separate the dry clean only stuff from at home washable stuff. Always follow the directions on the care label guide. Begin by adding 2 squirts of a gentle wool shampoo (eg- in USA, in INDIA ) to a bucket of tepid water. Turn the garment inside out, submerge, swish, then soak for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, rinse twice, pressing out the water.
2) DRY FLAT - Remember, never wring or hang-dry wet sweaters as the wool stretches when wet. Lay the garment on a clean towel and roll up to extract excess water. Unfurl and let dry on a new dry towel or a mesh rack. Reshape the garment closely. I remember Mom using sheets of newspapers piled together and laid flat on ground to dry the sweaters. It always worked for her, but there was always a risk of print ink running out and staining the garment. Well today you could stick to either a mesh-rack or drawer liners ( the paper ones ) .
3) DEPILL - Shave off fuzz balls with this. It is a fabric safe device with multiple blades ranging for heavy, medium, and fine knits.
4) STASH SAFELY - Creepie crawlies can worm their way through cracks in a cedar chest, so to keep them away have a sachet filled with 1/2 cup dry lavender handy. Fold your knits and place them in an airtight plastic bin or this bag made specially for heavier knits, throw in the lavender sachet and store in a cool, dry place.
If all this seems tedious to you then you could consider using DRYEL, an easy, at home dry cleaning system. I have been using this for months now and I can swear by the results. I will be using it for some of my expensive knits and will hand wash the rest according to the above steps.
Hope you find this piece of information helpful .
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