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Do you have some tips on clothing storage?

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Now is a good time to go through your closets and put winter items in storage. Keep the following tips in mind as you store your clothing.

* Make sure clothing items are clean before storing. Stains, perfumes, hair care products or body oils left in the clothing fibers can intensify during storage and can permanently damage the clothing.
* Dirt on the clothing or crumbs or tissue in the pockets can attract insects. Prior to cleaning the entire garment, turn any pockets wrong side out and use a brush to remove any debris.
* Vacuum the storage area well to remove any crumbs, dust, hair or lint that might attract insects. Regularly vacuum the rugs where they fit close to the baseboard. Good housekeeping is critical for preventing or controlling clothes moth damage.
* Storage temperature should be moderate--in the 60s or low 70s--and should not be in an area with excess moisture or strong sunlight. Use closets with tight fitting doors.
* Try suspending wall to floor cotton drapes in front of clothing to keep dust and moths away. Wash the cotton fabric to remove any sizing and do not use perfumed fabric softener in the final rinse or dryer.
* damage. The natural cedar oil evaporates and a fresh treatment of cedar oil should be applied every two years.
* Storing garments in plastic cleaner bags can cause damage to the fibers.
* For clothes moth control, a new "bio-repellent" has been developed as an alternative to mothballs. Besides being toxic, mothballs leave an unpleasant odor in clothing and can cause fabric to discolor if it comes in contact with the garment. The new product uses a highly effective formulation of lavandin oil and is available in a lavender scented sachet that can be placed inside drawers and storage boxes, or hung in closets without damaging clothing. The lavandin oil is in gel form and turns to a powder when the sachet needs to be replaced. In an average size storage area one of the units should protect clothing for one season. Larger closets and those in daily use may require two or more units. The product should be available in stores in the insect repellent section. Be sure to read the label prior to use.

Posted on 22 Mar 2001

Karen Biers
Entrepreneurship/Home-Based Business Specialist

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