Monday, May 13

CHERISH what you already have (no-clothes-shopping challenge step 2)

Today I want to share with you one extra super easy step on our way to stop/reduce clothes shopping. Last time I spoke about clothes you have, and many times don' realise you have them. Now, when we are aware of how much we have, we are going to cherish it. Simple as that.

Cherishing means to value, to look after. What I am about to write now is nothing else - and I cannot stress it more - than coming back to common sense and change few techniques in process of looking after clothes. And when we look after them, they last longer.

* Washing: use eco-friendly detergents, and use them wisely. Just a little of detergent can wash whole load of clothes. The same is for fabric softeners - since we have more and more concentrates available, we need only a little of it to make a good job.

* Care for material: care labels will tell you how to wash it, and delicate materials should be washed only by hand. There are handwash programs on our washing machines now, however, they do delicate job and don't clean out stains. Wash stains first, then handwash. If you have wool or silk, leave it to professionals.

* Separate laundry by colours (obviously), turn garments such as jeans inside out, keep buttons and zipper closed. This will prevent them to look worn or damage them while washing. Use colder wash programs, and you might have eco option on your washing machine too. If it's heavily stained, try to wash stains out by hand with brush first.

* Use salt - oh the joy of grandma's tricks! Salt keeps colours on garment and make it look fresh (I remember using salt as a colour stabiliser when dying my clothes as a teenager). One spoon of salt with detergent in main wash is enough.

* Forget tumble dryer. Unless you live in wet wet wet country like Britain, there is no excuse for using it. It's only a change of your habit. (When we moved to the Netherlands 2 years ago, our dryer broke down. Since then it's waiting to be fixed, but I have to say I don't miss it). You will save on bills too, and laundry dried on fresh air smells better. Win-win.

* Hang your clothes to dry, if you washed them inside out, dry them the same way. Out of the direct light, please!

* My personal the most favourite - reduce ironing. You don't need to iron your underwear neither your curtains. Dry all garments nicely stretch, straight, so they don't wrinkle. Iron only if necessary - shirts, pants, all fancy clothing, which you wear to look smart. Your tracksuits are fine without ironing, believe me.