with Susan Wagner
The Working Closet is your source for the best of what's hip and fresh in fashion and beauty. Susan Wagner keeps you up-to-date on trends and offers tips and tricks for making everything in your closet truly work for you.
You can also catch Susan over at Working Closet.
It’s still hot here in Oklahoma, despite the fact that, as my five-year-old announced this morning, “It’s not summer any more!” I have a few weeks (like perhaps six) before I will really be able to get out my fall duds, but it’s never too soon to start thinking about cleaning and storing summer clothes.
Clean up, clean up. Before you even think about packing summer clothes away, make sure that everything is clean. Any traces of food are magnets for bugs, while small stains can turn into big stains during the winter. Launder or dry clean everything before storing. Remove dry cleaning from the plastic bags, though; dry cleaning bags can trap moisture and can cause mold to grow over the course of the winter. And you do NOT want that happen.
Can we fix it? Yes we can! Take anything that needs repairs to the tailor NOW, rather than waiting until spring. If you pop that skirt in the guest room closet, thinking, “I’ll get the zipper fixed in the spring,” I guarantee you that spring will come and you will pull out that unrepaired skirt and probably wind up buying a new one to replace it, for NO GOOD REASON. Fix it now and save time and money later.
Tag, you’re it. Store things together, in easy-to-find groups. Pack tees and shorts in a plastic or canvas box; hang dresses and skirts in the guest room, or in the back of your every day closet (BEHIND the things you are wearing right now). Label boxes or garment bags (again, stick with cloth garment bags, if you choose to do this).
Cobbler, cobbler, mend my shoe. When you are rotating your wardrobe, don’t forget your shoes and handbags. Clean leather pieces with saddle soap; polish shoes. Clean cloth bags according to directions (some can be hand washed, while others should be dry cleaned). Wipe nylon bags clean with a damp cloth. Have any necessary repairs done now (new soles on shoes, new hardware on bags). Stuff bags with tissue paper, to maintain their shape, and store in breathable cotton bags (or pillow cases–yes, really!). Store shoes in boxes–plastic or canvas, or the original shoe box, if you still have it.
Still wearing your summer clothes? Then take some time to get your winter pieces ready for the first cold snap. Again, launder or dry clean anything that needs it. Take garments for repairs or have alterations done. Assess what you have and what you need.
Finally, think about how you can start to transition from your summer wardrobe to your winter wardrobe. I assume that most of us don’t actually HAVE four distinct sets of clothes (spring, summer, fall, winter); instead, we have basic pieces that work in virtually any season and that can be layered for colder weather (tees and tanks, for example). Feel free to mix your colder weather pieces with their warmer weather counterparts (white jeans with a turtleneck, for example) but think carefully about balance; a very light silk skirt will be overwhelmed by your boots. As the weather cools off and you find yourself wearing more layers and more substantial fabrics, put away the lighter, more summery pieces.
But clean them first, please. You’ll thank me in the spring.
Today is the First Official Workday of September, so it’s time to Show Us What You’re Wearing! You can find The Working Closet Flickr pool here; take a minute to see what everyone else has on today, and then post YOUR photo.
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