Does anyone have a suggestion on how to wash a wool sweater without a dry cleaner? My daughter loves her Christmas present, but I cannot afford to keep getting it dry cleaned.
By Jackie from Buffalo, NY
Simple: use a mild soap or detergent and wash and rinse in thee same temperature water (but not hot warm or cold is best) just swish the sweater around and squeeze a few times do not wring spread out on a large towel and roll very tightly, repeat the last step until your towel is just damp should not take more than 3 towels.
Let sweater dry flat on the bed on a dry towel. Hot water will stretch the sweater.
One of the tricks I learned, was that because wool is hair, you can use hair products to clean it. When you wash your wool hats or sweaters, wash them with shampoo. In the rinse water use a tiny bit of conditioner as a "fabric softener." Just be sure to rinse all the conditioner out of your garment when you're done. You'll have wool that's softer than ever before and it won't get that winter static either. Good luck.
You could use "Woolite" or Dryel. I kind of like kffrmw88 answer. That would save you money.
Be sure not to wash wool items in hot water and 'do not place washed items' in the dryer or they will shrink.
My mom taught me a long time ago -before gentle cycles- to wash a sweater by hand gently in a sink of barely warm water and delicate soap. Swish it gently, maybe rub a spot a bit. Rinse to remove soap. Wring out very gently and lay it flat on a fluffy towel. Roll up the towel to remove excess water. You can use another towel and repeat if necessary. If it's a delicate sweater lay flat to dry on a rack or table that won't get ruined. Or hang it on the back of a chair or on the railing.
I use Dryel sheets on my sweaters. It's so easy and safe. I put like colored sweaters in the dryer on medium heat, throw in a Dryel sheet, and tumble dry for about 20 minutes. They come out wonderfully soft and fresh smelling. Plus I don't have to worry about shrinkagae, colors bleeding or any of the other hazards of washing them.
If they get a spot on them the Dryel sheet packet tells how to treat that too.
When I absolutely have to wet-wash a sweater, I hand wash it using baby shampoo. It's extremely gentle, and very inexpensive too since I buy it at the $1 store. Also just a small amount of hair conditioner (also from the $1 store) will make it come out nice and soft. I use the same method that Coolcook described so well.
Also Deeli pointed something out too. Once a sweater has gotten wet, don't put it in the dryer or it will shrink and get out of shape.
Woolite and do not wring dry. Lay the sweater flat on a towel and roll up into the towel to soak out all the excess water - you may have to use 2-3 towels. Lay on flat surface to dry. You may have to stretch the sweater to its original size and pin in place so that it will dry to correct size. Do not use hot water as it will shrink. Shrinkage can go from a size 12 to a baby size.
I used to collect antique clothing and learned a great deal about handling delicate fabrics. I was taught to NEVER use Woolite as it leaves a residue.
Thanks to you all! Say a prayer I am going to try to wash her sweaters tomorrow. :o) Thank you all once again for the great ideas. Jackie
There is a website called How to Clean Stuff I believe the address is www.howtocleanstuff.net You might find your answer there. Good luck :-)
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