Category Archives: Cleaning

Spring Storage + Cute Bags, Gleeners

It’s Time to Store Your Woollens!

Yup, it’s May, and you can officially put all your woollens away for the season!!! I’ve written a lot about this in the past, so instead of reinventing the wheel, I’m just going to gently nudge you to read our CARE AND MAINTENANCE INFO. A quick summary of the salient points:

SWET Bags from Gleener

Last week at the Knitter’s Frolic (a local show hosted by the Toronto Knitting Guild) we sold out of all of our adorable project bags from Gleener, and they have graciously and quickly restocked them!

Gleener Swet Bags make perfect project bags, but they’re so much more. They’re designed to keep odours, wetness and messed contained. The zipper and lining are both waterproof, so they also make a great travel companion to the gym, swimming or beyond. Keep your projects safe, clean and dry anywhere you go! They come in two sizes, the medium is great for regular projects, and the larger is perfect for large sweaters and blankets (I also use it for my swimming gear, as do my niece and nephew).

  • Medium: 10.5″ x 14″
  • Large: 16″ x 21″ (fits a large sweater or a blanket project)
  • Machine wash in cold water, flip it inside out and hang it up to line dry overnight.

Gleener (Full Size)

While you are cleaning your knits, you might as well de-pill them and get them ready for the fall with a Gleener® Ultimate Fuzz Remover™. This award winning fabric de-piller and lint brush combo safely removes fuzz balls, lint and pet hair from even the finest of fabrics. Yes, it really works, I have one at the ready in my closet. Plus, it’s a Canadian company! READ MORE HERE!

Gleener (Travel Size)

Gleeners are also available in a compact travel size, which is super handy if your carry-on luggage is frequently in use (Gleeners work on all fabrics, not just knitwear, so it;s great for cleaning up suits & such).

REMINDER Spring Clean Your Woollies

 

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Freshly washed sweaters drying.

 

For me, spring isn’t really official until the first sighting of moths – which was this week. So today, as I do my own laundry, I offer you a gentle reminder that Spring is upon us and it is time to wash and store your woollies. So many people come into the store with sad stories and even sadder looking knits – don’t be one of them next season! NOW is the time to prevent moth holes from happening; wash and store your woollens and you’ll thank yourself next fall and winter.

We write frequently about how to maintain woollens, you can find it all HERE.

 

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Clean sweaters ready for Spring-Summer storage.

 

KNIT HACK Spring Prep

Moth-Proofing: 5 Easy Things You Can Do Now

It feels a little early, but even if spring is only casually flirting with us, it may be time to start thinking about protecting your woolens for the upcoming season. It’s A LOT easier and cheaper to avoid moth holes than it is to mend them. Even worse, if you end up hosting a moth infestation you’ll have to pitch everything. You can read up on the “How-Tos” in Storing Your Knits from last spring, but here are a few things you can do to get yourself started.

Change Your Moth Traps

I just changed my moth traps and they were blessedly EMPTY. If you haven’t already, it might be time to change yours, and if you don’t use them I suggest you do. I only consider them a second line of defense, but they’re helpful, and they’ll let you know if you have moths.  I use the Aeroxon Clothing Moth Traps.

Bag Exposed Stash

Bugs like sweaters, but your stash is also vulnerable. There’s no time like the present to bag up yarn that’s floating around. Don’t forget projects on hold, laying fallow in project bags. If the majority of your stash isn’t already organized in sealed bags (like Ziploc) now is probably a good time to get on that. By the way, the picture above is pretty, but a good example of how NOT to store your yarn (stuff in baggies doesn’t make for good pictures). If you find yourself spring-cleaning your stash and need to purge, our next yarn swap is April 23, 2017, or you can drop off donations in a sealed plastic bag any time we are open.

Wash Dirty Woolens

Start washing the sweaters you wore this winter, especially anything that’s been in frequent use. Little bits of food & shmutz are what moths feast on, so shutter the buffet. If you’re like me and wear a lot of sweaters, getting them all cleaned is a bit of a chore, so you might as well start early and get it over with. I like to wash with either Eucalan or Soak, both are excellent no-rinse delicate washes that are very easy to use (I do not suggest you use the stuff from the grocery store).

Store Peripheral Knits

Start bagging and storing any knits or woolens that you aren’t likely to use again this season. At my house this includes heavy wool sweaters, thick wool socks, scarves/hats/gloves that didn’t get used, felt hats, wool coats.

Plan Ahead

OK, this sounds really niggly, but I’m constantly learning from my mistakes in this particular area. Almost every year I come across some class of object that I forgot was made of wool – and of course I find this out the hard way (lots of tears and regret). I always think I’ll remember things but never remeber things, so I keep a running Moth-Proofing Checklist and add to it every time I find something new that needs to be stored. I keep my checklist digitally in a cloud-based form of storage (iCloud, Google Docs, Dropbox, etc), so I can get to it easily and it won’t get lost. This is currently what it looks like:

  • socks (wool)
  • coats (wool)
  • knit scarves, hats, mitts, gloves
  • legwarmers
  • felt insoles
  • blankets
  • pillow covers
  • felt hats
  • needle felted stuff
  • felted bags

 

NEW SoakWash Pineapple Grove

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SoakWash Pineapple Grove

Soak has come out with a fresh new scent, Pineapple Grove!  Soak is a super easy, eco-friendly, no-rinse wash for hand or machine washing delicates, from lingerie to cashmere. Soak products are manufactured in Toronto Canada and are available in an assortment of fresh fragrances plus Scentless (for your sensitive side).

How it works:  Just Soak and squeeze. No need to rinse. Lay knits flat to dry. Wash sets (like lingerie) together. Test fabric for colour-fastness.

    • made with plant derived and renewable ingredients
    • biodegradable, phosphate-free, dye-free, sulphate-free
    • safe for hand or machine washing (including HE)

To learn more about Soak drop in for a tutorial at Soak School, they’ll teach you how to clean everything from makeup brushes, lingerie, quilts, workout wear, menswear, and of course knits.

 

Shop Online Button Turquoise 250w

 

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KNIT HACK Sweater Season Prep

It’s October, the days are getting cooler (well, some of them are) and it’s time to spring our sweaters from their summer slumber. Sometimes, no matter how meticulously you packed your sweaters away and protected them, they still end up with little holes, which of course you don’t notice until you put them on. Today’s post is about mitigating the damage that’s already been done.

1. Inspect

As soon as you spring your sweater from storage prison give it a good inspection. In a well lit room give it the once over, hold it up to the light to check for holes or weak spots. If you find any immediately put a pin in the hole to keep it from growing, or temporarily sew it up with some contrasting coloured sewing thread.

DO NOT WASH your sweater until you have permanently mended the holes! If you do, the holes will get bigger, and be much harder to repair.

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2. Shave

Now is a good time to remove any pilling or fuzz from the surface of your sweater. As you go pay close attention to the surface of the textile and look for more problem spots.

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I love my new Gleener, it’s proven to be a great little gadget (and it’s Canadian)! They come with 3 different heads to accommodate different textiles. Above is my very fine store bought cashmere  sweater, on which I used the gentlest head. If you aren’t sure which head to use just start with the gentlest and move up. Be sue to read the instructions that come with your Gleener, or you can download them from the Gleener website.

Shop Online Button Turquoise 250w

 

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3. Secure & Repair

Secure your holes! While Gleening I found one in my cashmere sweater and temporarily secured it with a pin. As soon as possible mend the holes; small ones are easy to fix almost invisibly, but larger ones will cause drama and tears.

I generally sew up little holes with matching sewing thread. (Whenever you are at a dollar store and see a set of tiny little sewing thread spools in a pile of colours GET IT! They are an excellent and cheap source multiple colours of thread, which come in extremely handy when making repairs.) If the holes are larger you may need toe fix them with left-over yarn from the project ….. but that kind of mending is a whole other blog post.

Now, once mended, if you want to wash your sweater, go for it. I suggest using either Eucalan or Soak delicate wash, both are excellent products, are Made in Canada, and you don’t need to rinse them out.

Now you are ready for fall!