A simple guide to storage and usage
- Use the right coat hangers – Many assume a hanger is a hanger. Although they aren’t wrong, it is detrimental to the survival of your suit to be mindful of the ones you choose. A thick wooden hanger can add years to your suit in many ways. Firstly, unlike a wire hanger, it will help maintain the suit’s silhouette and not cause damage. Also, choosing one the right size will help it keep its shape. If you are unsure, you can ask your tailor what size hanger is best. Finally, wood will absorb any damaging moisture trapped in the suit. Another tip is finding a cedar wood hanger, which will act as a natural moth repellent.
- Give your suit space – Never store your suit in a crowded wardrobe. The fibres of a suit need a chance to breathe. If it is packed in, moisture is more likely to damage the fabric. If you are storing it in a garment bag, opt for cloth, as synthetic fibres may also trap moisture.
- Air drying your suit – After each use, air dry your suit for 24 to 48 hours. The time will depend on the weight of the fabric. As we have mentioned, moisture is a killer when it comes to suits, and unfortunately, after a day of wearing, your suit is sure to have absorbed a lot. Therefore, airing it out is a must if you want to enjoy your suit for years to come.
- Alternate suits – Like you, your suit needs time to recover from a day of work or play. Try not to wear a suit more than twice each week so that the fibres can relax and rejuvenate after each day of wear.
- Pack it correctly – Use a thick coat hanger and a garment bag whenever possible when transporting your suit. However, sometimes on a flight, this might not be so easy. It can feel wrong to fold your suit, but we have tips on the safest ways to do so. First, turn your jacket inside out, hold the shoulders and fold it, so the lapels are in line. Then gently roll it up. From experience, we have learned that this is the safest way to pack a suit when flying.
- Be mindful of what is in your pockets – When wearing a suit, one thing will likely be on your mind: looking good. Unfortunately, bulging pockets don’t only detract from looking great in your tailored suit, but they can also have damaging side effects, creating more strain on the fabric than necessary. So make sure only to carry essential items in your pockets. Also, consider buying two pairs of trousers for each suit to rotate them. The trousers are the part of the suit that takes the most strain and will likely not last as long as the rest.
Cleaning and maintenance
- Brush it regularly – Your suit will gather dust and dirt throughout the day (or night). Over time this can build up in the fibres and ruin the fabric, so it is important to tackle it in the early stages. After each use, gently brush your suit with a soft-bristled brush, ideally one made from animal hair. You don’t need to go crazy; a quick brush-down will suffice. Another plus from regularly brushing is that your suit won’t attract as many moths.
- Use a steamer–Although your suit might look good after ironing, the temperature will damage the fibres. Therefore, it is best to use a small hand-held steamer to relax the fibres and eliminate any creases or wrinkles in the fabric. There are many steamers on the market, and they won’t break the bank. If you don’t have a steamer or are travelling light, you can hang the suit in the bathroom when showering – this can work wonders.
- Taking care of stains – No matter how careful you are, food or beverages can always find their way onto your suit. There are a few things you can do, but if you can’t remove them, it might be time to visit a professional dry cleaner. Here are a few first responses to stains:
- Dab the stain with a damp cloth as soon as possible. However, if the stain won’t budge, don’t overdo it because you may damage your suit.
- If you encounter a particle-based stain, a steamer can be an excellent tool for tackling it.
- If the stain is oil-based, try using some talcum powder to help remove it. Remember, if the stain is stubborn, consult a dry cleane
- Does it need a dry clean? – Having your suit dry cleaned can feel fantastic, but it does come with its downfalls. Every time your suit is dry-cleaned, its life expectancy will decrease. I am sure you can imagine why the process might not be forgiving on the fibres of your suit. Depending on how often you are wearing your suit, it should only be dry-cleaned two to four times each year.
Contact us for more expert advice
If you would like more advice on how to properly care for a suit or have other related enquiries, don’t hesitate to get in touch with Patrick and Co. We have a whole team of experts who can help you make the right decisions when it comes to bespoke suits. We have been perfecting the craft since the 60s and take pride in assisting customers in any way we can. Contact us today, you won’t be disappointed.