The obsession with clothing and style on a personal level is borderline addiction. The enjoyment received from informing you guys (our readers) about fashion is extensive. But what is the point of advising you on fashion, trends and styles if you are not offered the advice on how to maintain the quality of your organisational skills, and the longevity of your garments. In ‘Wardrobe Maintenance: Part 1’ we introduced you to the process of effective spring cleaning and tidying in preparation for new season purchases. This time we are taking a closer look at what you need to consistently achieve a high standard of organised closet space and garment quality in the long term.
A good spring clean is never truly affective unless you have decided to implement a decent strategy in terms of how you plan to organise your space. If you are lucky enough to have a wardrobe that has a selection of shelves make sure you make full advantage of the already build in potential for organising your closet. Designate shelves for jumpers, shoes and bags because these are the items that should be the easiest to reach for in a hurry. These items also tend to be the key pieces that complete an overall look.
However if you are unlucky enough to find yourself without adequate shelving, then here are a few ideas that will help you on your way.
- Storage Cubes/Boxes: these can be life savers when you need to store items away for easy access. They can be placed in a number of places including under the bed, at the bottom of your wardrobe and even on top of the wardrobe. There are many variations available to you, and some may fit in with the decor of your room if you feel inclined to go this far.
- Shoes: if like most style conscious gents, you will have a number of different pairs of shoes. Shoes of every colour and style for every occasion. There is a way to keep these organised in the most efficient and simple way. Shoe racks and hanging shoe organisers are the way forward. Personally I have two shoe racks at the bottom of my wardrobe and each shelf is organised by occasion. The other option is to have a hanging shoe organiser hung on the inside of your wardrobe door. These can be bought in many different sizes and from anywhere so there is no excuse for not sorting those shoes. However if you prefer a more attractive alternative then you may want to opt for some storage chest draws that can fit either at the bottom of your wardrobe or at the end of your bed.
- Hooked: this is probably one of the simplest and most effective forms of creating somewhere extra to hang your garments. The trusty hook now comes in many quirky shapes and forms so you can create a special hanging place on the back of your wardrobe door for you most important garments.
- Multiple items: you may find that you have more than one of the same items. For example; ties and trousers seem to be the key items that mount up in number and require simple and easy access to. The logical conclusion is to use items such as tie racks, trouser clamps and special trouser hangers that have more than one bar. This not only utilises your limited space, but allows for proper care to be taking in storing your pieces. You can also use trousers hangers to hang your ties and bow ties from. All you need is wooden clothes pegs to keep them in place.
(Handy Hint: to remove wrinkles from ties, simply hang them in the bathroom while you’re in the shower. The steam works as a kind of ‘iron’ and helps keep your neck pieces pristine)
In ‘Wardrobe Maintenance: Part 1’, we spoke about throwing out old clothes and keeping hold of classic pieces that you can wear again and again. There are ways that you can increase the quality and longevity of your garments; to really make sure you get your money’s worth.
- Never put away dirty clothes: this is something that we are all guilty of. You wear a garment once and think it is OK to put it back into your wardrobe and wear it another day. For example, shirts that have been worn once may seem clean but stains appear over time due to sweat, deodorant, grease or from dirty air and rain. This grime will become ingrained and stains can become difficult to remove. This is why you may notice that white shirts either yellow or go dull over time. Always launder or dry clean these items before considering long term storage to help prevent damage. Invest in good quality laundry cleaning products to help keep your clothes in optimal condition. Once it’s been worn throw it in a laundry bag or basket and get it cleaned.
- Shoe Care: in order to prepare shoes and boots for storage in your closet, they need to be cleaned thoroughly and followed with an application of high quality conditioner to preserve the leather. Always resole and repair where necessary, as sometimes this is more cost effective than buying a new pair of shoes.
- How to hang a suit: moths in the wardrobe may seem a little fictitious but it actually happens more than you realise. Moths are attracted to the soils and stains in the wool, so always dry clean your suit prior to storage. Always use wonder hangers to maintain the shape and structure of your garments. This goes for any hung garment really; wooden hangers are the way forward. Always hang your suit in a well ventilated area; the use of storage bags isn’t advised because woollen suits in particular need to breathe. Also it’s worth investing in a decent lint brush to remove any lint or ‘fluff’ from your clothes. A sweater stone is another good investment because this helps remove pilling and can renew the finish of your sweaters thus increasing the wear.
- Storing sweaters and jumpers: this is a simple tip to help maintain the life of your cashmere and merino jumpers. Never hang them as this encourages your knits to lose their shape and this stops them from sitting correctly on the body. Fold them like you would see in the department stores and house them on shelves or in storage boxes and draws. Remember to unfold and refold them as this stops the creases become a little more permanent than required.
Stick To It
These methods may seem a lot of work when put into practice, but if you allow yourself to get into a routine it will all become second nature. You will be glad you carried out these practices because in time you and your wardrobe will reap the benefits.
If there is anything we have missed or a hint or tip that you have discovered yourself, then send us a shout in the comments below.