One of the best ways to ensure that your favourite garment or suit lasts as long as possible is to ensure it's cleaned properly, according to its material, cut, and added embellishments. Thinking that you can toss all your clothes into a washing machine, or even trying to hand wash your items, can easily make them faded, stretched, and threadbare, and ready for the rubbish bin. To know when it's best to take your clothes to the dry cleaners, note a few tips to follow.
The Labels Say the Garment is Dry Clean Only
If a clothing label says "dry clean only," don't think of this as just a suggestion! Even if a garment seems very durable, and even if you've hand-washed similar garments and they've come out fine, you still want to take the piece to the dry cleaners. The way the seams are sewn on the garment, or the type of dye used on the fabric, might risk the piece getting damaged even in cold water in your home's sink. To avoid this, always have the piece dry-cleaned when you see this label.
The Garment is Lined
Any garment that is lined should be dry-cleaned, as even hand-washing that piece can cause the lining to tug away from its seams. In turn, you may find that the seams start to bunch, or the piece doesn't lay or hang flat. The lining itself may also have dyes that run in the wash, or may outright shred if washed incorrectly. To avoid this risk, have any lined garment dry-cleaned.
The Garment Is Made of Suede, Leather or Velvet
Fabrics such as suede, leather, or velvet should always be dry cleaned, as these solid pieces may tend to shrink or pucker when exposed to water. Suede and velvet may also need brushing rather than outright cleaning in water and detergent, and leather may also need a type of hydrating oil that will keep it from cracking. Take these pieces to a dry cleaners, and be sure you keep them separated from other clothes, so the cleaner will know tho handle them properly.
The Garment Includes Embellishments
Beads, sequins, lace, and other such embellishments may outright fall apart even if you gently wash the garment in cold water. This is because not all embellishments are actually sewn on, and the glues used to attach these items might become brittle and otherwise damaged when exposed to water and detergent. Embellishments like delicate lace and embroidery can also come apart when washed incorrectly, so that they have loose threads and pilling. Protect these embellishments by having these items properly dry-cleaned.
Learn more about which clothes should or shouldn't be dry cleaned by contacting local drying services.