We’ve all been there, we go to put on our favorite tee or our favorite pair of denim jeans and BAM, the tee has lost it’s shape and those black denim jeans are not so black anymore. Fabric wear and tear is inevitable. This bright mustard yellow jumpsuit got me thinking about all the ways I could damage this fun color and I began thinking about the wash and dry plan for this fun look. Yes, believe it or not, I have a wash and dry plan for my favorite looks, including this yellow jumpsuit, because I don’t want to ruin my fun clothing simply because I washed it wrong. Don’t have a wash and dry plan for your fav clothing pieces? Well, there is something you should know! You can slow down the wear and tear on fabric and I’ve got just the right tips and tricks to make it happen. So today, I’m sharing my 7 ways to keep your fabrics lasting longer, even your not so great quality fabrics from stores I won’t mention. I’ve worked in retail for over 10+ years and it was only 5 or so years ago that I starting picking up some tips and tricks to keep my clothes from breaking down so quickly. I know, I know, clothes aren’t made to last forever, but I do want them to last as long as they can, particularly because I do buy thrift and vintage, a lot and these clothes already have some miles on them, so it’s important to take note of the best fabric preservation practices. With that being said, below are some of the ways I keep my fabrics in tack and ready to wear:
WASH INSIDE OUT AND COLD
Color fade is one of the most annoying fabric wear and tears. I like my blacks black and my dark denim jeans to maintain that deep blue they had when I first bought them. I try to hold on to the rich color as long as I can by simply gentle washing the items inside out. You’ll still loose some dye but not as much if you gentle wash it all inside out and wash it with cold water. Hot water is very harsh on rich blue and black dyes. Keep it cool and look cool in clothes that aren’t faded
INVEST IN A QUALITY IRON
Yes, irons can get pricey, but you know what else is pricey? Having to replace your clothes every year. There are plenty of iron options out there that have a steam setting, a setting for your silk and satin fabrics and a setting for your cottons and polyesters. Iron the right way and watch your clothes last a whole lot longer.
LINE DRY/ INDOOR OR OUTDOOR
This is old school but this is really one of the best ways to protect your clothes from fabric breakdown. The dryer is harsh on clothes and breaks down fabrics quickly. When fabrics break down, you experience color fade, holes in the fabric, tears in the seams, and for some fabrics they will pick and the fabric will ball up. Line drying the fabrics uses less energy, protects the fabric from harsh breakdowns that dryers typically cause and if you’re line drying outside, depending on where you’re at, they have a fresh outdoor smell and less wrinkles.
Another old school method for protecting those fabrics. Yes, I know, I know, hand washing is so time consuming, but you can save time and waste clothes or you can spend a little bit of time caring for the pieces you’ve spent your hard earned money on. Hand washing is not so bad, depending on how you look at it.
If I’m going to use the washing machine, to avoid staining and dyeing my light colored clothing, I wash everything separate. I know, this seems like a no brainer, but I wash these types of loads: my regular lights/whites, my regular medium colors, my regular darks, delicate whites/medium lights, and delicate darks. Doing this seems anal and borderline OCD, but this method helps me avoid dye stains on my lights and whites and separates the dedicates that need extra care and handling. My husband and I do our clothes together so it’s not that rigorous of a process as I’m sure you’re probably thinking.
SPECIAL CLOTHING DETERGENTS
While I can’t speak from personal experience on using special detergents to preserve my clothing, I have many friends and family who swear by Woolite for Darks and Woolite for Lights, which apparently preserves the color of the fabric, keeps the color intact and reduces color fade. If my tips above stop working, I may consider purchasing a special detergent, but for now, the process I have going will suffice.
STOP BUYING CHEAP CLOTHES
Honestly, this one doesn’t even need to be listed but I’m listing it because understanding your fabrics is important, LOL. As I’ve mentioned before, I’ve worked in clothing retail for 10+ years and have purchased, worn, and trashed an array of clothing brands. One simple practice I’ve picked up over the years is learning how to detect quality. There are just certain fabrics or fabric mixes that don’t hold up as well as the years go by. I’ve learned there are certain company’s who use quality textiles like cotton and mix it with modal and nylon to cut cost. Just like I look at the ingredients in my food, or the ingredients in my hair and skin care products, I take the same effort to look at the fabric tags usually located on the inside part of the clothing. If you’re asking why a piece is so expensive, check the fabric label, it may say 100% cotton or 100% silk, these fabrics are not cheap and require extra special care and usually last a long time because of the quality. I find clothing that has a large mix of fabrics breaks down easier and I get less wear out of them. There are a lot of fast fashion brands out there that want to cut cost on clothing production and mix an array of cheaper fabrics together to mass produce and create more of the product. Most of the time, these items don’t last long in your closet. If you’re concern is wanting your clothes to last longer, take the time to read the labels and feel the clothes. Yes, sometimes, simply touching the clothing can help you determine if a fabric is cheap and not worth the buy.
Whew, okay I hope this info was helpful.
Scroll down for a little pageant update and deets on this cute look.
This past weekend we had a blast shooting photos for the cover of our pageant program. If you’ve seen my IG stories, you know the theme was red, baby! I got a funny for you, apparently, all my hard work at the gym is paying off and the red dress I wore was practically falling off of me, but I’m a clever gal and snatched that dress in the back with a duckbill clip and rocked it out #resourceful. In other pageant news, Tickets for the pageant are NOW on sale. Click here and purchase a ticket under my name, Deidra Craig. Hurry, tickets are only on sale until August 31st! If you’re unable to attend, but would still like to support or would like to purchase a ticket another way, please reach out to me here.
Shoes and mustard yellow jumpsuit are linked above for your shopping pleasure.
Welp, that’s all folks.
Hope everyone has an amazing week!