To clear our closet space, many of us like to pack away our seasonal clothes in storage to make room for only the items we will be wearing over the next few months. But did you know there is a right and wrong way to store clothes? In order to avoid nasty surprises, follow these simple tips to store your seasonal clothing properly.
- Cleaning. Before you store your items, do a thorough check for cleanliness. It is important to do a good clean of all items before you store them away as stains will only darken and become more entrenched the longer they sit.
- Containers. Choosing the right storage container is crucial. Plastic containers may seem like the right choice, and while they can be, if any bug larvae have gotten a hold of your clothing, they will have an absolute feast as they will have nowhere else to go. If you would like to go this route, wash your clothes in warm water and run them through a cycle in a clothes dryer; the high heat should kill any larvae if there are any. Place your items immediately into the boxes once they are washed and dried. Cardboard boxes are another option, but be aware that they can attract bugs, too. The best bet? An unused suitcase.
- Bug Repellents. If you plan to use mothballs, make sure the boxes or containers are out of reach of pets and children; the chemicals can be deadly if ingested. If you would like to try another route to repel insects, try placing a small cedar block in the box or container.
- Packing. One of the biggest mistakes people make is to store their items in hanging storage bags. While this is okay for dresses or items with little strings used specifically to hang them, hanging is not a great option as sweaters and other knit items can become misshapen and stretched. Be sure to fold your items and place in containers with heaviest items at the bottom and lightest at the top. Pack items in lightly to allow for some air flow.
- Conditions. Now that your items are packed safely, remember to store them in a clean, cool, dark, and dry environment.