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Fabrics & Dry Cleaning Should & Should Not’s

We all love adding a new piece to our wardrobe but once it’s been worn, we need to know how to wash it. Is it “Hand Wash” or “Dry Clean Only”? Lay or hang to dry? Different fabrics require different types of treatment. 

Photo by Tamara Bellis on Unsplash

Which Fabrics Should or Shouldn’t be Dry Cleaned

Clothing labels, that little tag provides helpful washing instructions to ensure our cherished items get the proper care they need.

Fabrics that need professional cleaning: silk, velvet, wool, leather and more

You know that vintage leather jacket you love, you’ll want to make sure it lasts. For a quick fix to take care of any stains, start by scraping off the residue, but make sure to keep it away from water, which can damage the material. Then it’s a good idea to trust it to an experienced dry cleaner for long-term maintenance. The same rules apply for other delicate pieces like your silk scarf. Defer to the professionals when it comes to taking care of fragile fabrics.

Other upscale fabrics—including chiffon, velvet and merino wool—should be brought to a professional cleaning service to preserve their natural luster and form. Also, entrust suits and most professional wear—especially wool pieces—to the care of a professional.

Wash at home fabrics: cotton and knits

Just because an item can be machine washed doesn’t mean that you should subject it to a hot soak—heat can cause colors to fade. Cotton can be washed in warm or cool water with regular detergent. Synthetic fabrics such as polyester and nylon are safe for machine wash, in warm water on either the delicate or permanent press cycle, but take care when drying these items to avoid permanent wrinkling.

More luxurious pieces such as cashmere blends should always be washed by hand in cold or lukewarm water with gentle laundry soap. Never wring the fabric as it may ruin the material. Instead, take care to dry flat or use a drying mesh rack to help the clothing keep its shape. If you’re pressed for time, place the item in a laundry bag and select the most delicate cycle on your machine to mimic the hand wash process when laundering at home.

If you’re ever unsure about your clothes, check the label.

Special items: accessories and embellishments

There are certain pieces that require special attention, like a suede fringed dress or straw sun hat. Use a damp cloth to wipe away dirt, dust or sweat stains from your hats, and be sure to keep them in a cool, dry spot rather than out in the sun to avoid color damage. The embellishments on a dress can make it extra difficult to care for. Most sensitive details like fringes and sequins require handwashing in a gentle detergent, while embroidered pieces should be machine washed inside-out and placed in a mesh laundry bag on the delicate cycle.

When in doubt, visit your trusted dry cleaner for proper care of any attire.

At CASA Organic Dry Cleaners & Custom Tailoring we offer a full menu of options to suit all your clothing care needs. Call or Text – (646)759-0040

CASA Organic Dry Cleaners & Custom Tailoring

155 West 21st Street, (bet. 6th & 7th Avenue)
New York, New York 10011