A guide to storing clothes

Save space, and preserve the lifespan of your garments

Care Instructions

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The daily struggle of finding something to wear hidden amongst a year’s worth of garments is an unnecessary battle. But with a little forethought and some planning, your wardrobe can be transformed from garment jungle to serene oasis where everything has its place.

Seasonal storing of your clothes isn’t just about making your wardrobe look like the kind of space you see on minimalist blogs, it’s also a great way to keep your clothes in the best condition while weeding out ones you no longer wear for eBay or local charity bins.

To avoid moths, mould, dust and simple wear and tear, here are some of the best ways to store your unworn clothes and keep them in peak condition during the off-season.

Vacuum packing

Vacuum packing – sealing away your clothes in airtight bags – not only protects your clothes but also creates a lot more space in your wardrobe, which will inevitably make things easier whenever you need to get ready. Because the bags are see through, you can easily keep track of trans-seasonal items on the off-chance of cold-fronts or heatwaves.

On the downside, they can occasionally need resealing and don’t allow the clothing to breathe. They’re also not ideal for delicate clothing and can often trap in moisture, although including silica crystals in the bag can help prevent this.

Cloth storage bags

Not as convenient space-wise as vacuum packing, using 100% cotton or wool bags is much safer for delicate clothing as they allow the clothes to breathe. Wrapping clothes in tissue paper will also prevent them from yellowing and snagging on zippers or other clothes while in storage.

Storage bins

Storage bins can be an easier alternative to vacuum bags but the irony is that they require a fair amount of storage space themselves.

Storage bins are perfect for stashing summer clothing, like excess tees and shorts, and more hardwearing garments such as jeans. Using silica gel sachets will also help prevent moisture from developing mould.

Cedar, not mothballs

The scent of mothballs is at once distinct, hard to remove and never pleasant. Invest in a natural alternative such as cedar blocks that not only smells great, but works just as well, if not better, at preventing damage from moths and silverfish. Cedar hangers are also great for suits, helping to absorb moisture from daily wear.

If you're storing leather or fur, however, cedar can actually dry the fibres out. Use sachets of lavender instead.

Tips for storing clothes

  • Always clean your garments before storing – this helps prevent odours, stains and build-up of dirt.

  • Fold, rather than hang. This will help garments retain their shape while in storage.

  • Check on your garments every now and then and make sure no moisture has appeared or any insects have crept inside.

 

[Top Photo] Courtesy Mr Porter

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