Are you listening? Never, ever hang wool to dry. EVER!
When soaked with water, wool can be really heavy, and the extra weight will stretch the fibers beyond repair. After pressing the excess water out, lay your garment flat onto a terry cloth towel and start rolling. Gently press on the towel so that it soaks most of the water, then unroll your sweater and lay it flat to dry either on a drying rack or a clean towel.
Washing and drying your knits properly can solve a lot of issues but not all. Pilling is almost inevitable when it comes to woolen garments, and you’ll have to arm yourself with patience and a couple of useful tools to eradicate the problem.
Pilling is caused by friction. Wherever fabric rubs against another fabric, against your bag, or even against itself (like the underarm section of a sweater for example), pilling will occur. This means the sides of the garment and its sleeves are the most vulnerable spots.
How to prevent pilling? You can use a garment brush or a lint roller to smooth your knits regularly. When pilling occurs, try using an electric fabric shaver (with a safety grid!) on the most delicate setting or a pilling comb. You can also try to use a razor but be extremely careful as it could easily cause damages or even make holes in your sweater.
Blend fabrics will have a tendency to pill more than pure wool or cashmere
Your sweater is now clean dry and you’ve carefully removed any pilling or shedding. Don’t stop there! Make sure to fold it and put it away either flat in a drawer or on a shelf in your closet. Knits should never be stored hanging as over time the hangers will damage the knit on the shoulders and the weight of the fabric will stretch the fibers (up to 6cm of extra length...not the greatest idea).
We recommend keeping an eye out for moths. Those nasty little insects can destroy your most precious sweaters in the blink of an eye. Keeping a moth trap next to your closet is a good way to monitor how big of problem you have. You can also put a few cedar blocks or cedarwood essential oils in your drawers as the scent drives them away. When spring comes around, store your woolens in a vacuum-sealed bag. We definitely recommend investing in a couple of these bags as they'll help save space and keep the moths at bay. But whatever you do, always wash your sweaters and wool garments before putting them away as moths are more attracted by dirt and sweat.
A lot more could be said about knit-care, but you are now armed with the most important tips. If you follow these guidelines, not only will you extend the life span of your favorite sweater and make it softer overtime, you also won’t have to buy new sweaters as often. Your bank account and the planet will thank you for it!