Tender loving care


Spring's storm clouds have (mostly) passed and have helped pave the way for you to clear out your closet. Hooray! An updated, minimalist chic wardrobe will help your summer days feel that much lighter. But before we go any further, we have to ask to take a peek at that closet of yours. Are those  very minimalist, chic clothes stored properly, or are they crammed into a nook alongside a bridesmaid dress from 2002 that you still can't bear to part with? Have your fall pumps been treated for warm weather storage under the careful guise of a cobbler, or are the spikes of your stilettos worn down to weapon status? Can you count on two hands the number of (eek) wire hangers that twist every which way behind your closet door, beckoning you to ruin yet another top with their twisted, gangly twine?

School's out for the summer, so we won't scold too loudly. Instead, here's a brief list of “Dos” and “Don'ts” that will not only keep your wardrobe in top condition, but will help you keep your sanity, too.

Don't: Assume that garments labeled “Dry Clean Only” are trying to get you to spend more.
Do: Understand that “Dry Clean Only” means just that: it should be cleaned by a professional dry cleaner only. Period. “Dry Clean,” on the other hand, means that it's suggested that the garment is dry cleaned, but could likely also survive a gentle cycle wash.

Don't: Cram as much onto your closet bar as it can hold.
Do: Give your garments room to breathe. This prevents wrinkling, and the potential for snags/buttons/zippers catching on nearby garments.

Don't: Keep dry cleaned clothes in plastic bags and on wire hangers.
Do: Remove the plastic bags, which can trap dry cleaning fumes, and transfer garments to appropriate hangers (padded silk hangers for shirts and tops, especially, and sturdy plastic or wooden hangers for pants and skirts).

Don't: Think a worn-out heel is headed straight for the trash.
Do: Make friends with your neighborhood cobbler. Well-made shoes can almost always be repaired (ask us about the Louboutin Crisis of 2009), and, if cared for on a regular basis, can last a lifetime.

Don't: Leave dirty laundry in a hamper for weeks on end.
Do: Nip stains and odors in the bud by laundering and cleaning your clothes as soon as you can. The longer dirt saturates a garment—especially inevitable body oils—the harder it can be to lift out.

The Golden Rule applies not only to people, but to your wardrobe, too: do unto it as you'd like for it to do unto you. (Or, if you want to look fabulous, treat your wardrobe with the respect it deserves!)


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