Here’s the first in what I hope will be a regular feature, picking up where my old Knitting Bookmarks page left off, but on steroids. Once there have been a few entries, you will be able to see a “collection” of them by clicking on the Bookmarks category in my sidebar.
- Care of Wool Sweaters
- Packing Those Sweaters Away Safely
- Guidelines for the Care of Textiles
- Insects and Wool Textiles
- Clothes M*ths
Wool naturally repels dirt and doesn’t need frequent washing. But when it does come time to wash and put away my hand-knit sweaters and socks for the season, my favorite method of washing is to fill our tub or utility sink with tepid water and a cap-full of mild hair shampoo, then push my sweater into the water for a 10-minute soak. If the sweater is releasing a large amount of dirt, I’ll drain and change the water for a second soak. After soaking and before rinsing, I lift the sweater out of the water by supporting it from the bottom and gently squeeze without twisting. Rinsing is either done by soaking in clear water or with a tablespoon of hair conditioner added.
Once my sweater is done bathing, and depending on how fragile the fiber is, I will either put it in a mesh bag and spin it in the washer’s spin cycle on the lowest speed, or spread out a double thickness of towels, lay the sweater down, semi-spread out, with another layer of towels on top and then roll the sweater + towel and squeeze to get out as much water as possible. Drying is done on a sweater rack, a mesh sweater dryer or on a dry towel in a breezy (not sunny!) area.
Because we live in a desert climate, which tends to be rather dusty, I store my knits in zippered clear plastic bags, like those left over from buying new pillows or *kof* asweaterkit. You can also find these bags for sale online. For extra protection from m*ths, I toss in dried lavender flowers (still in the bag after poking holes in it with a sewing needle), which I buy at our natural foods shop.
Do you have a favorite site with information on sweater/wool/fiber care or have a tip to share? The comments are open! (But please don’t post product recommendations-Thanks!)