7 July 2011

Fabric care and storage

Top tips for clothing and fabric care & storage

Clothes, fabric and wool that are stored will attract the Webbing Clothes Moth. Moth eaten fabric and clothes are depressing and the holes will weaken the fabric and in some cases make it unwearable or unusable. Moths have been a real problem for the last few years, and 2011 is set to be one of the highest in terms of moth infestations. You can bring moths into your home from buying clothes/fabric, transference from someone who has moths in their home, and they fly in during summer months!

  • You need to use deterrents, and they need to be replaced every 6 months. 
  • If you get an infestation, the moths will attack not only fabric but books, papers and photographs, so all your precious memories can be reduced to dust!
  • Start by using lavender bags/sachets, and cedar. I personally can’t bear moth balls which are super effective, but stinky! 
  • The best and cheapest resource and supplier of moth products I’ve found is this one.
  • Pheromone traps are a great way to break the breeding cycle without using chemicals. The moths think they are all male! These sticky traps are also a good way to monitor how big a moth problem you may have.
  • Spring cleaning is a tradition for a reason. In order to get rid of moth eggs, you need to empty drawers and cupboards and clean out all the surfaces. Moths like to breed under static areas like furniture, so moving your furniture out and cleaning underneath breaks their cycle. Sunlight also kills eggs, so getting rugs and carpets outside and thoroughly beating them and leaving in sunlight will kill any eggs/larvae.
  • If like me, you don't have access to a garden, then running a sticky roller brush over your clothing can lift off eggs.
  • Ensure you change your hoover bag regularly. You may well hoover up eggs, and the hoover bag is a perfect environment for the moths to breed in! It's pretty gross, opening up the hoover and finding a big bunch of moths.....
Storing Fabric and clothes

This can be a nightmare. In terms of fabric storage i need to be able to access my stash, and see exactly what i've got. 
Using plastic for storage is a contentious topic. Whilst plastic vacuum bags are great in the fight against moths, they can leak plastic fumes, which isn't great for valuable vintage fabric and clothes. Personally i don't want to see my lovely old things being eaten away by moths, so I do use some plastic storage. 

I have limited space in my home for fabric storage, so i try and use what i already have. CD storage towers are great for showcasing smaller pieces of fabric, just make sure it's not in direct sunlight as the fabric will fade

A great system for easily storing and finding fabrics is the Antonius System in the Ikea wardrobe range which you can customise to suit your own needs http://www.ikea.com/gb/en/catalog/ products/S29877698


  1. Great post, thanks! But Antonius (Ikea) won't work for me...I have a very curious kitty who would make a mess of it all. She thinks everything is a toy.

  2. This is really interesting post. Thanks a lot for the useful tips. Keep up the good work. Move Out Cleaning.