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Storing woollen clothing

Storing woollen clothing
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Now that May is out, it's time to store your delicate woollens – but do you know the steps you need to take to keep them warm, durable and soft for years to come

Wool is a natural fibre that is known for its warmth, durability, and softness. However, it is also a delicate fibre that can be damaged by moisture, heat, and pests. If you are planning to store woollen clothing, including alpaca, cashmere, merino and lamb’s wool, for an extended period of time, it is important to take steps to protect it from these damaging factors.

Here are some tips on how to store woollen clothing:

Check your woollen jumpers and pullovers before storing them

It’s crucial to avoid storing clothing and textiles with an active moth or pest infestation. If you store infested clothing, when you come to bring them out of storage, all you will have is holes. And while your self-storage insurance would cover clothing that is damaged by a moth infestation originating in the storage centre, it won’t apply if the infestation came into the storage unit with your stored goods.

Only put clean woollens into storage

Clean your woollen clothing before storing it. This will remove any dirt, dust, or perspiration that could damage the fibres while in storage. You may also wish to treat woollens for moth and pests at the same time.

Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for cleaning your wool garments, or you may prefer to get them professionally cleaned. British Wool has some general tips to help you clean wool.

The best environment for wool clothing

Place your woollen clothing in a breathable storage bag or container. This will help to prevent moisture from building up, which can cause the fibres to rot. Damp also creates an appealing environment for moth larva, so an environment with low humidity is ideal for wool. Store your woollen clothing in a cool, dry place. Avoid storing it in direct sunlight or near a heat source, as these will cause changes in temperature that may stress the fibres.

Some storage units have environmental controls, which gives the cupboard or storage room a constant humidity and temperature. This can help keep your possessions in the best condition.

There are many different options for keeping your wool items safe from moth. You can get moth traps that will alert you to the presence of these pests. We have a blog post about moth that has plenty of tips to help you store woollens.

Containers for storing wool clothes

Some people swear by large boxes for storing wool clothing, while others prefer to pack them in garment bags. Cedar chips and blocks can be added to whatever container you keep your woollens in. If you have a chest of drawers or wardrobe in your storage unit, you could make use of it for your stored clothing. This will make efficient use of the space, which can help keep your storage costs down.

Update your storage inventory

Remember to note on your self-storage inventory what woollens you have in storage. This will save you time and stress in the autumn when you come to plan what clothes you need for colder weather. If you are storing very valuable woollens, you may want to check that your self-storage insurance is still right for your needs. It’s quick and easy to get a quote from Store and Insure, and you may find you can save some money.

Inspect your stored woollens

We would always recommend inspecting your stored goods every few months for your own peace of mind. Check any moth traps you have in place and move your stored clothing around to stop creases forming. Inspections like this will ensure you catch any damage to your stored woollens at an early stage so you can take steps to stop it getting worse. Regular visits to your unit will also help you keep in mind what you have in storage.

By following these tips, you can help to ensure that your woollen clothing stays in good condition for years to come.


Question and Answer


Do I need to have climate-controlled storage if I am storing natural fibres like wool and silk?

Natural fibres may react to sudden changes in temperature and humidity. Climate-controlled storage will keep your stored yarn and fabric in ideal conditions. Climate control also suppresses pests like moth.


Is it safe to store wool blankets in plastic boxes?

Some people say that plastic boxes don’t allow natural fibres to breathe. But as long as your blankets are completely dry and clean when you store them, there is no reason not to store them in a tough plastic box. Plastic boxes are lightweight and cheap, and if you choose heavy duty boxes they can protect your stored goods from rodents, too. Avoid plastic containers and bags containing PVC as it can go sticky over time.