The Northampton Gent’s guide to menswear maintenance
Fine gentlemen, over the months we have given advice regarding the ideal attire for any gent; however one issue that we have yet to touch on is regarding how you should maintain these garments. As important as it is to own the correct menswear, it is equally important that you are caring for and maintaining them correctly as well. If you are, your clothing can potentially last for decades. No matter what quality of clothing you own, it will inevitably become damaged if it is neglected. There is little point in purchasing expensive clothing if it is not looked after and will eventually end up looking cheap, old and worn. These are not the qualities associated to a modern gent. It is well worth taking the necessary steps to protect your clothing before it is too late. By making a small number of changes to how you store and maintain your clothes, you could save a substantial sum of money in the long run.
Ties are a particularly delicate item of clothing and thus special care and attention should be made into how you store yours. Failing to store them properly can shorten their life span and lead to them developing wrinkles which are almost impossible to get out.
There are two ways of storing your ties. One of the most popular ways is draping it over a prong on a tie rack. They do not necessarily have to be expensive. A personal favourite of ours is from Marks and Spencer which is not only affordable but is also able to store a large number of ties. Hanging your ties on a tie rack is a good way of ensuring that your ties remain wrinkle free.
If you have limited wardrobe space then you can also roll your ties loosely and place them in a box or drawer. When it comes to knit ties, they should always be rolled up. If you hang them on a tie rack you run the very real risk of stretching them.
It does not matter which of the two above methods you use for storing your tie, however, it is important to ensure that they are always untied after you have finished using them. Avoid leaving them knotted for extended periods of time as this can make the creases and wrinkles harder to get out.
A set of well looked after cufflinks are sure to catch the eye. In order to keep them looking new it is necessary to store them properly after they have been used. If the cufflinks came in a box then you are able to store them in that. However, there are also purpose made cufflink boxes which will prevent them from scratching and developing a dull appearance. There are a wide range of cufflink boxes available ranging from small leather ones to large wooden ones. They consist of a number of compartments which are lined with fabric such as velvet and suede which protects the cufflinks finish. Some cufflink boxes have a glass lid which makes them ideal for displaying your collection. It is worth taking extra care with metals such as silver which need protecting from the elements. They can easily tarnish when exposed to moisture, such as that found in a bathroom. This can be minimised through storing them correctly, in a cool and dry place.
There is nothing worse than taking one of your favourite sweaters out of the wardrobe and finding it has moth damage. If you do not take the necessary steps to prevent moths damaging your wool clothes you could have thousands of pounds worth of damage inflicted to them. It may come as a surprise to some, but the moths which you see flying around your house will not cause any harm to your clothes. It is in fact caused by their larvae. The moths lay eggs where there is a plentiful supply of food – wool, fur and other animal-based materials. When the larvae hatch they feed on the wool fabric over a period of several months.
Before storing newly purchased clothing it is important to have them professionally cleaned. Dry cleaners are able to use chemicals which kill the moth larvae that could have potentially been laid in the clothing.
To prevent moths from being attracted to your wool clothes there are a number of different products available to repel them. Moth balls are a widely used method of deterring moths from going near your clothing. They release fumigant gas so can only be used in an air tight container. If you are not a fan of the smell there are natural alternatives available such as cedar and lavender. Cedar balls will kill young moth larvae but not the older ones. The scent fades over time so you need to make sure they are replaced regularly. Lavender balls are an excellent way of repelling moths and will leave a pleasant scent in your wardrobe or drawers. However, they will not kill moth larvae. The easiest and most convenient way of killing the larvae is to take the item of clothing to a dry cleaners.
Wooden shoe trees are a must have purchase if you are planning on getting many years worth of use out of your leather shoes. They ensure that the shape of the shoe is maintained and the leather does not crack. That is not all wooden shoes trees do, they also absorb any excess sweat from the soles and leather.
We would urge all of you fine gentlemen to heed our wise words and to properly maintain your outfits. We like to purport timeless styles and clothing choices that will stand the test of style time; however having timeless pieces is pointless if these pieces become haggard and tattered. With just a little bit of effort, you will be sure to keep your favourite pieces in fine condition long into the future.
So gentleman, have you got any thoughts or tips regarding how men’s clothing should be stored? Let us know below:
Have you got any special tips for maintaining your garments?
Do you have any horror stories of your favourite menswear pieces falling into preventable disrepair?