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Cashmere care and storage - cleaning cashmere


If you've invested in the cosy perfection of Scottish cashmere knitwear, you'll want to look after your garment well. Here we tell you how, with the unrivalled experience that comes from being Scotland’s oldest heritage retailer online. Our advice covers three main aspects of caring for cashmere:

But before anything else, our best advice for ensure your garments last well, is not to wash them too often! Unless you've had a serious spill, a cashmere sweater should not need cleaning after every wear. You should be able to go at least a few uses between washes. Trust your senses. If in doubt, you can always apply as specialist wool & cashmere anti-bacterial spray to remove any odours, then let the yarns rest a little before folding and putting away. 

However you clean your cashmere, turn all garments inside out before washing. This will protect the outside surface

Cleaning cashmere

The first advice with any garment is always to read and follow the garment's own cashmere care label when washing your cashmere knitwear or homewares. Manufacturers know their products best, and any general rules we describe below may be over-ridden by care advice based on the fabric’s unique production methods.

Spot-cleaning

Often stains are small and localised, in which event a full wash may not be needed. Just use cold water, a dab of mild detergent, and a Q-tip or cotton bud to gently ease out any stains.

Hand-washing

Cashmere can normally be hand washed. We generally recommend regular hand washing by immersing your garment in a solution of warm water and a gentle wool wash product such as a mild detergent. You can find specialist cashmere care products, designed to help you maintain, store, and transport your garments in pristine condition.

When washing by hand, do not rub. Instead squeeze the suds gently through the fabric. Never wring or stretch the fabric in any way. Finally, rinse several times in clean lukewarm water until the water runs clear with no trace of detergent. You’ll find your effort rewarded as years of loving care and attention will give you a garment that seems to feel softer after every wash.

Machine-washing

Some cashmere can also be gently machine-washed using the handwash, delicates or woollens cycle on your washing machine. If washing your cashmere in a machine, ensure you use a specialist cashmere or delicates washing liquid. Never wash it at more than 40 degrees, and ideally less, and keep the wash on a short cycle. We suggest avoiding biological detergents. And do check the garment's care label first to ensure that it is suitable for machine washing. And remove the garment for drying immediately.

Dry cleaning

If in doubt, cashmere can also be dry cleaned. But we would ideally suggest laundering by hand by preference, as dry cleaning can strip Cashmere of its natural oils over time. And we would never entrust a cherished cashmere garment to any dry cleaning service we didn’t know well, to have confidence they will know how to handle it properly.

If your garment has suffered a spill, remember to tell the cleaner what caused the stain. This will advise them how best to remove the problem without risk to the garment.

Drying cashmere after washing

Do not leave your cashmere wet; dry it as soon as soon as possible or odours may develop. Squeeze out any excess water before lifting a wet cashmere garment (or perhaps use a slow spin cycle on the machine if permitted by the care label). It may stretch if you are not careful, so take great care.

Never hang cashmere on a line to dry as this will cause lines and stretch marks. You're best to lay the garment on a towel, smoothing your cashmere gently back into its original shape, and drying flat.

We'd recommend you avoid tumble drying unless you're sure your cashmere garment will tolerate it. But in some cases a quick tumble dry on your dryer's lowest heat setting may help to invigorate it.  

Avoid any direct heat such as radiators or strong sunlight. When your cashmere garment is dry it can be gently pressed with a cool iron to remove any creases. You may also wish to brush a sweater regularly, gently using a lint or bristled garment brush.



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