The days are getting cooler which can only mean one thing – it’s knitwear season, people! Keep your woollens looking their best with these unmissable hacks.
Knitwear doesn’t do well when it’s over-washed; it loses its shape and general loveliness. So instead of washing after each wear, refresh it with a good steam to banish bacteria.
Had a spill? Spot clean it instead of chucking the whole jumper in the wash. What you clean with depends on what you stained with, so check out this handy guide.
Don’t be woolly about cleaning
Most knitwear tragedies happen while cleaning. Wool and washing machines aren’t always the best of friends, so be wary. And never, ever bleach natural fibres as it will do horrible things.
Feel free to tumble dry if you’re hoping for a snug-fit finish. No seriously, don’t tumble dry knits unless the label absolutely begs you to – and even then with extreme care. Instead, reshape after washing by gently tugging and dry as flat as you can.
Jumpers don’t generally need pressing but if you have an item that does, use a steam iron on a wool or gentle setting. Place a piece of white cotton fabric (like a tea towel or hanky) over the garment to avoid those annoying shiny marks.
The worst has happened – your favourite jumper has come out of the wash three sizes smaller and is now only fit for a toddler. But wait, all is not lost. Soaking it in cool water with a dash of fabric softener or baby shampoo should soften the fibres enough to gently stretch it back to normal size.
While we’re on the topic of heat and resizing woollens, blow-drying a sweater’s stretched neck or cuffs when damp will help to shrink the problem.
Bobbles happen to all great knitwear but before you go searching for some quirky gadget, use a plain old razor (one without a moisture strip – no silky smooth finish required here!) to carefully shave them off.
Stitch up holes as soon as you notice them – and definitely before washing – to avoid them getting any bigger. Snags are a drag so make them disappear by gently stretching the fabric around them.
You may have picked out that stylish pullover from the shop’s rack but don’t be tempted to hang it in the cupboard unless you’d like some seriously misshaped shoulders. Fold and store in a draw or on a shelf once clean and dry.
If you discover moths in your clothes (knitwear nightmare!), here’s what to do. Hint: it involves a freezer. Seriously.
With all this knitwear knowhow on board, we say – winter, bring it on!