Must-Know Lifehacks for Storing Winter Clothing
Congratulations. You survived winter in style. Now that warmer temps are finally approaching, it’s time to make room in your closet. Say ‘goodbye’ to dark, heavy winter wear, and say ‘hello’ to whimsical, springtime color palettes.
Don’t just throw everything into a box until next winter. Take the time to store your winter clothes right, so they look just as good as they did this season.
Always Clean Your Clothes Before Storing
Wash clothes made of cotton, linen and polyester. Dry clean wool, cashmere, silk and rayon (and we happen to know the perfect place to get the job done — ZIPS® Dry Cleaners). We know it seems like a drag, especially since you won’t need to think about these clothes for months. But, clean clothes mean stains won’t set. Dirty garments deteriorate with time, and left-over body oil can lead to discoloration and attract unwanted bugs and odors. Yes, you should do the same with your winter shoes and boots, too.
Pro Tip: Professionally dry cleaning your clothes is always a better option than washing them. Doing so prolongs a garment’s life, prevents yellowing and is overall more convenient — no stress, no mess.
The fabric material should dictate whether to hang or fold your clothes.
To hang or to fold? That is the question. Always fold natural fiber fabrics, including items like cashmere and wool. Fold clothes made of acrylic and poly fibers, too. Use acid-free tissue between each piece to avoid wrinkling. Hanging these materials can lead to unwanted stretching. Hang jackets, coats and fabrics like silk or cotton on padded or wooden hangers. Oh, and never hang leather. Doing so can result in permanent creases.
Pro tip: Never leave clothes in plastic garment bags; use ones made of cotton instead. Clothes left in plastic bags trap moisture and promote mildew growth. Cotton bags allow them to breathe.
Choose plastic over cardboard and take pest prevention measures.
It’s always tempting to store off-season clothing in cardboard boxes. We get it; they’re free. But, the glue in cardboard is acidic and attracts insects. They’re also susceptible to water damage. It’s best to store clothes in sealed plastic bins. Avoid packing your clothes with mothballs. Contrary to popular belief, mothballs are actually bad for storing clothing. They smell, and the fumes are hazardous to humans. Use lemon zest shavings, lavender sachets or cedar to repel pests and keep your clothes smelling fresh.
Pro Tip: Don’t pack your bins too tight. Leave some room for the clothes to breathe and allow for ventilation.
Store winter clothes in cool, dark spaces.
Never store off-season clothes in the garage, basement or attic. Extreme temperatures cause fiber damage. And if your winter gear is exposed to the sun, they’ll likely fade. To maintain your winter wear style, store your clothes somewhere cool, dark and ventilated.
Pro Tip: We recommend storing your clothes in plastic comforter bags underneath the bed.
And remember, sometimes winter weather creeps into spring. So, make sure a few outfits are easily accessible just in case it gets unexpectedly cold.