As the season turns from sweaters to sandals, we all have the conundrum of how to store our handmade goodies properly. A little work when you are ready to put them away for the summer will keep your projects in beautiful condition until you're ready for them next winter!
Where Do I Start?
Wash it. As we pointed out in our moths post, what the devilish beasties really like is the dirt, sweat, and dead skin hanging out on your handknits. Use a no-rinse wool wash like Eucalan or Soak, and then lay the garment flat to dry. Emphasis on DRY - if you're storing for the season this puppy needs to be completely bone dry.
Plastic Bag or Not?
Conventional wisdom says no- at least not long term. Depending on the fiber, there can be up to 30% moisture content there even if it doesn't feel wet. In general, go for a mesh or canvas bag instead. Our cotton drawstring project/gift bags are perfect. An exception to the plastic bag rule of thumb would be if you live in a very low humidity area like the dessert southwest, or if you know you struggle with insect activity. In that case the risk of bugs may outweigh the risk of mildew.
- Keep your lovelies out of direct sunlight to prevent fading as well as protect the fiber from UV damage.
- Worried about moths? Try cedar! Twistedista Emily's tip is to put cedar essential oil on the swatch you made for each garment (because you are super diligent and always do a gauge swatch!) and store that with the finished project for the summer. Not only do you have bug protection, but you have extra yarn at the ready to fix tears or snags.
- As for your yarn itself, all the same rules apply- keep it out of direct sunlight and store with cedar to help fend off moths.