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Clothing Care: It's Only New Once

It’s no secret that we’ve been loving The Laundress lately. A recent trip to their Soho store inspired The Knit Care Kit, a pretty great giveaway and a lot of conversations about how we can better launder our own wardrobes and help take care of yours. What is the point of building a wardrobe that works if you can’t werk it?

Gwen Whiting and Lindsey Boyd, the founders of The Laundress, met at Cornell’s Textile Science program and their line of products was born after they noticed that the pieces they loved were being prematurely worn down and were expensive (and time-consuming) to continue to dry clean. Sound familiar?

We learned a lot about what makes The Laundress products the best (hi, good for you & the environment), but there was something more universal that came out of our conversation that is difficult to declare on a ‘Garment Care’ page.

Your clothes are only new once. We only get to enjoy this perfect, unworn, special piece as it was designed for a short window, so why do we rush to wash it after every wear? For most items, one wear does not indicate that it’s time for a full wash cycle. If you get a stain, it can be treated. If it’s got an odor, it can be treated. The more often fibers are beaten around in a washing machine (no matter the cycle or temp of the water), the faster they deteriorate.

We’ve gotten comfortable with washing our jeans less, but there is little conversation around the rest of our closet. It’s hard to imagine anyone really *wanting* to do laundry on the regular, especially as we pare down our wardrobe.

As a culture, we expect a lot out of our clothes. We want them to stay new forever, but wear in so they fit us perfectly; to get soft like a favorite t-shirt, but show no signs of wear like pilling or discoloration.

The best way to care for your clothes is to care for them - store them properly, hang them between wears and washes, avoid over washing, and use products without damaging ingredients. Often the way we wear and the way we wash is indicative of how long a piece lasts. 

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