4 WAYS TO MAKE YOUR CLOTHING LAST LONGER

OUTFIT DETAILS: old dress, similar here, here, and here | old chambray, similar here

I’m so embarrassed to admit this, but 9 years ago when my husband I were dating, I remember him telling me one time that I really needed to throw away a few of my clothes. I was so bugged by this, because why should I throw away some of my favorite pieces? He responded, “because they are full of holes!” Apparently I didn’t think that wearing a shirt full of holes in the elbows was a problem? Or one covered in pilling?

I’ve come a long way since then, tossing or repairing clothes that get holes and other damage, but I also am much better about taking care of my clothing in the first place. It’s such a waste of money to purchase clothing and then not take care of it; and in my case, a lot of my handmade clothing is so special to me, I want it to last forever — I want to give it to my daughter, daughter in laws, or granddaughters someday! Pretty sure they won’t be too interested in a garment filled with holes.

So today I’m teaming up with Persil Pro Clean to talk about five things I do to keep my clothing in mint condition and make them last way longer.

1. Buy clothing with higher quality material. This is kind of a given — the higher quality the fabric, the longer it will last. This doesn’t mean you have to buy expensive items, lots of inexpensive stores sell pieces that are made of good quality material. Feel the fabric before you purchase it — thicker, sturdier, tighter woven fabrics will be more durable and be less prone to snagging, holes, or pilling.

2. Don’t wash as often, and when you do, use a good detergent. I used to wash my clothing every single time I wore them. With most of my shirts I still do, but dresses and jeans can go a few wears without having to be run through the wash.

I’ve tried a bunch of different laundry detergents over the years, and absolutely notice the difference between low quality and high quality detergents. I want something that keeps my whites super white, and brights super bright, all while not damaging my clothing. Persil Pro Clean has three types of detergent that we use — their Power-Liquid detergent that is amazing for keeping my colors vibrant and clean, their Power-Pearls that keeps my whites from getting dingy and gray (but you can also use it on colors!), and their Power-Caps that are amazing for fighting stains (and heaven knows I have to deal with that on my clothing since I have little kids!)

Also, following the instructions on the clothing for washing in warm or cool water makes a huge difference in the longevity of the fabric and color, so make sure you check those tags!

3. Store your clothing properly to avoid damage. I don’t have a ton of closet space, but despite that I try to keep my clothes stored properly to avoid causing any damage to them. If you have the space, hang your dresses and blouses, fold your sweaters, fold your jeans, and keep your shoes in airtight containers (like these ones that I’ve recently added to my closet and love).

4. Rotate through your clothing regularly. Part of my problem when I was dating my husband is that I had four or five favorite shirts in my closet and rotated through those ones way more than anything else. So they quickly got worn out because of so much use. Although I’m still prone to reach for my favorite pieces more often (like everyone), give your other pieces a little more airtime to balance out the wear and tear. And like I mentioned in last week’s closet spring cleaning post, cleaning out your closet every so often helps you remember what pieces you actually have so you get more use out of your entire closet!

And to help you take better care of the clothing in your closet, Persil Pro Clean is doing a super awesome sweepstakes giveaway that includes a year supply of Persil ProClean and a premium night out on the town! The night out on the town includes a $300 gift card to Nordstrom, a $200 opentable.com gift card and a $150 uber credit! Just hop over to PersilProClean.com/sweepstakes and fill out the form to enter!

What other tips do you have for keeping your clothes in great condition? I’d love to hear!
*pictures by Jana Laurene
the post was created in partnership with Persil Pro Clean

19 Comments

  1. Carrie says:

    For some reason the link isn’t working for me. Am I the only one?!

  2. Anna Cobbs says:

    Love your shoe storage idea!!!

  3. Sara says:

    Where is the dress from? I love it!

  4. I love how you store your clothes! Especially the shoe idea. My shoes are currently crowded together in a rack next to my door with winter shoes piled high in the closet. I definitely need to invest in some of those containers!

    Circus & Bloom
    ♥♥♥

  5. Marcela says:

    You have an amazing blog!

    I love the tips you’ve given here! I do most of them already, but I also do spot cleans on smaller stains so I won’t have to wash the entire garment.

  6. Rebekah Rogers says:

    One tip that I have is to use the correct hangers. They make specific hangers for different types of clothing, and you don’t have to spend a ton of money to get them. I love to go to TJ Maxx or HomeGoods to find the nicer hangers on clearance. 🙂

    A question I have – How do you prevent or get rid of pilling? Some of my favorite sweaters get it in the armpit areas. I don’t want to throw them out because I love those sweaters, but I also don’t want to be embarrassed every time I raise my arm. Haha!

    • Merrick says:

      A super sharp razor works to scrape off pilling most of the time! Try that!

      And love the hanger tip. Definitely will invest in a closet full of those one day!

  7. Meghan Jenson says:

    I loved your master bedroom post (the pictures of your closet made me think of this). So, here is my little area of the room that I haven’t quite figured out what to do with. Clothes that I wear more than once. Do you just hang them back up or put them away in your drawers and remember that you have worn them. I have them in just a corner of my room (my eyesore) but I haven’t thought of a good system to put my clothes when I wear them multiple times.

  8. I really need to get those plastic containers.

  9. Nicole Helbling says:

    Where did you get the shoe cube organizer though? Not the bins.

  10. Mary says:

    I pretty much hang dry all of my clothing except for underwear. I find that skipping the dryer prolongs the life of my clothes and prevents shrinkage, fading etc. I also try to be realistic about the clothes I buy – with two young children at home (and 23 kindergartners in my classroom!), dry cleaning is really not a realistic option so I avoid clothes that I can’t hand or machine wash.

  11. I must have been reading too fast because I thought you said “but dresses and jeans can go a few YEARS..” I was like, MERRICK, EW GIRL! Then, I backtracked and everything was ok. Hehehe great tips. I’ve never heard of this brand.

    http://www.stylesewme.com

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