Storage Tips

Control your environment:

  • Avoid plastic or nylon garment bags, moisture can become trapped in the bag and cause mold, mildew or attract insects.
  • All clothing should be stored in clean breathable garment bags in a cool and well ventilated area.
  • Light attracts insects and can fade the colours of your clothing. It is always best to use a dark storage area.
  • Do not store your clothing in the cold basement or the hot attic. Temperature extremes can cause damage to some fabrics.

Leather and Suede:
Suede and leather should be professionally cleaned and oiled before storing.Supple leather garments should be laid flat and padded well with tissue.

Knits, Silks and Rayon:
Rayon should be stored flat if possible, and stored on acid free paper. If hanging is necessary pad the shoulders with tissue to prevent stretching.

Shirts neatly folded and stored on shelves.

Linen:
Linen’s should be rolled to prevent permanent creasing.

If it is necessary to fold them be sure to refold often to avoid damage.

Fur:
Fur Garments need to be stored in a cool, dark location, however we strongly recommend professional cold storage

Detail of an antique wooden closet.

Care Lables

International Care Labels Meanings

A care label may also have symbols to supplement written instructions. It is typical that all care methods will be listed if a garment has an international symbol tag. Professional dry cleaners can explain the meaning of any care symbol, so don’t hesitate to ask if you need clarification.

Dry Cleaning 
Dry Clean in any solvent symbolDry Clean in any solvent
dry clean solvent except trichlorrthylene symbolDry Clean in any solvent except trichloroethylene
flurocarbon solvent only symbolUse flurocarbon or petroleum solvent only
reduce cycle symbolA short line under any of the above indicates reduce cycle, moisture, and or heat
do not dry clean symbolDo not dry clean
do not use symbolIn all cases, if an X is through the symbol, it mean Do Not Use

 

Drying
tumble dry high heat symbolTumble dry high heat
tumble dry low heat symbolTumble dry low heat
drip dry symbolDrip dry
hang dry symbolHang dry after removing excess water / Dry flat after removing excess water
dry flat symbol Dry flat after removing excess water

 

Washing
maximum temperature 95 symbolMaximum temperature 95° C / 203° F
maximum temperature 95 gentle cycle symbolMaximum temperature 95° C / 203° F gentle cycle
maximum temperature 60 symbolMaximum temperature 60° C / 140° F
maximum temperature 60 gentle cycle symbolMaximum temperature 60° C / 140° F gentle cycle
maximum temperature 50 symbolMaximum temperature 50° C / 122° F
maximum temperature 40 symbolMaximum temperature 40° C / 104° F
maximum temperature 40 gentle cycle symbolMaximum temperature 40° C / 104° F gentle cycle
maximum temperature 40 gentlest cycle symbolMaximum temperature 40° C / 104° F gentlest cycle
maximum temperature 30 symbolMaximum temperature 30° C / 86° F gentle cycle
hand wash symbolHand Wash
do not wash symbolDo not wash

 

Bleaching
chlorine bleach symbolChlorine bleach may be used
do not chlorine bleach symbolDo not chlorine bleach

 

Ironing
hot iron 210 symbolHot 210° C / 410° F
warm iron 160 symbolWarm 160° C / 320° F
cool iron 120 symbolCool 120° C / 248° F Do not iron

According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), all manufacturers are required to attach a permanent label to textile garments detailing directions for their care. At least one safe care method for a garment must be listed by the manufacturer and importer, as stated by The 1972 Care Label Rule and its 1984 amendment. With the exception of footwear, gloves, hats, suede and leather clothing, and household items, such as linens, all textile clothing is covered by the rule.

The care label must be easily found, not separate from the garment, and remain legible during the garment’s useful life. If any part of the recommended care method may harm the garment or other garments being laundered or dry cleaned with it, a warning must be included on the label. If there is no cleaning method that would not damage the garment, a warning must also be included on the label.

Definitions of Cleaning Methods
Dryclean: Normal drycleaning fluid found in any commercial or coin-operated dry cleaning establishment can be used. The process may include moisture added to the fluid, hot tumble drying (160’F), and pressing by steam press or steam air-form finishing.

Professionally Dryclean: Restricts the drycleaning process to methods possible only in commercial drycleaning plants. “Professionally Dryclean” must be accompanied by further information, such as “use reduced moisture,” “low heat,” or “no steam finishing.”

Machine Wash: Indicates use of either a commercial or home washing machine. Other information may be added giving specific washing temperatures, size of the load, or drying procedures.

Does “WASHABLE” mean it can’t be drycleaned?
If the care label says “washable,” it may or may not be safely dry cleaned – there’s no way to tell from the label alone. Because a manufacturer or importer is only required to list one safe care method, there may be many other methods that can also be used safely. On the other hand, other care methods may also not be safe, however the manufacturer or importer is not required to include those methods on the label. The International Fabricate Institute (IFI) supports voluntary “alternative labeling” by manufacturers to inform consumers of all satisfactory care methods.

A dry cleaner may ask you to sign a consent form in the event you request a method of cleaning not stated on the care label of a garment. With or without the form, cleaners who accept garments for cleaning are obligated to clean them in a professional manner, to the best of their ability.

If a garment is damaged despite following the manufacturer’s instructions, it is recommended that you return to the store of purchase and explain what happened. You may also obtain the manufacturer’s name and address and write to the company if the store doesn’t resolve the problem. Provide an estimate of the number of times the garment has been washed or dry cleaned, the full name and address of the store where it was purchased and a full description of the garment as well as all the information given on the labels and tags. A copy of your complaint letter should be sent to the Federal Trade Commission, c/o Correspondence Branch, Washington, D.C. 20580. Your individual problem cannot be solved by the FTC. Hwever the information you and other consumers supply may reveal a pattern or practice requiring the Commission’s attention. You should also contact the FTC if a garment is purchased with no care label attached, including the name and address of the store and manufacturer.

Removing the Care Label
Because every garment is required to have a care label attached at the time of purchase, you’ll be able to take the care instructions into consideration before buying it. Be forewarned that removing a care label entails some risk, since the complete care instructions, any warnings and other information related to proper care will no longer be visible.

 

What’s the best way to wash delicate laundry?

washerIf the care tag says “gentle cycle,” use a mild detergent. “Regular-formula liquid detergents have chemical additives that can harm delicate fibers,” says Linda Cobb, known as the Queen of Clean. Use an all-natural detergent for regular loads.  “Green detergents are safe for any type of clothing because they are all natural, meaning they don’t contain chemicals that will harm those gentler items.”

For colorfast delicate items that are stained, Cobb suggests treating them the natural way, using 3 percent hydrogen peroxide, which is just as effective as non-chlorine bleach. Pour ½ cup into a full load and your garments will sparkle.

Should I wash new clothing before wearing it for the first time?

basketYes, it’s a good idea. Before showing off that new top, you might want to run it through the washer. Otherwise common additives may put you at risk for contact dermatitis, says Hilary Baldwin, a New York City dermatologist. A prewear wash also prevents excess dye from staining skin or other fabrics, like upholstery. It’s particularly wise to clean intimates, like lingerie and swimsuits, before wearing them. “Although it’s rare, you could catch scabies or crab lice from others who have tried the garments on,” says Carolyn Jacob, a dermatologist in Chicago. Rinse these items in very hot water and hang them to dry (this won’t damage the fabric) before putting them on for their big debut. ―Sarah Smith

How do I get the chlorine smell out of a swimsuit?

While a dip in the pool on a hot summer’s day is refreshing, the chemical smell that’s sometimes left behind isn’t. To get rid of the odor and to help your suit last longer, follow these simple steps, courtesy of swimwear expert and Canyon Beachwear Store Manager, Ilene Sofferman.swimsuit

  • Always hand-wash your suit as soon as you can after swimming. This prevents smelly bacteria and chemicals from making themselves at home in the fibers.
  • Use a lingerie cleaner that is formulated to gently yet thoroughly clean delicate pieces. But when the chlorine smell is overbearing, Sofferman recommends using a swimsuit cleaner like Canyon Beachwear Swimwear Cleanser. These solutions are designed to remove chlorine while restoring the brilliance of a suit’s color.
  • Pour one capful of cleaner into a sink filled with cold water (never warm or hot), then add the swimsuit. Swish it around for about three minutes. Depending on the level of odor, you can leave the suit to soak in the solution for a few minutes more.
  • After cleaning, rinse the suit and roll―don’t wring―the excess water out with a towel.
  • Lay the suit flat to air-dry.

How do I keep my black pants black?

BlackpantsWhen you are ready to do a load of laundry, turn the pants inside out to minimize color loss caused by the friction from rubbing against other clothes, then choose a short, delicate cycle. “The colder the temperature, the better, since warm water tends to break down fibers and fade clothes faster,” says Steve Boorstein, author of The Clothing Doctor’s 99 Secrets to Cleaning and Clothing Care. A specialized detergent for cold-water loads,helps neutralize the color-sucking chlorine that can be found in tap water. Then hang or lay the pants flat to dry; don’t throw them in the dryer. And the next time you’re in the market for black trousers, look for a fabric that retains dark dyes, like a washable wool blend or nylon, as opposed to acetate or linen.

Garment life expectancy

Image

Fair Claims Guide from IFI 

Let us assume you have a damaged garment – How will you or your dry-cleaner or any legal arbitrator determine the adjustment amount?

Every textile product has a “life expectancy” according to its intended purpose, material content and the rate of change in fashion or style.  Since an article may retain a degree of usefulness beyond the point of life expectancy, it has some residual value for as long as it remains in useful condition; however, this is usually a minimal monetary value.  An article that is rendered unwearable, or worn out, within or beyond its normal life expectancy, has no value and no negotiable basis for adjustment regardless of the nature of the loss or damage.  Sentimental value because of personal attachment is subjective and is ruled out as a valid consideration.

As with life expectancy, age and condition are also taken into consideration in deciding the value of a used textile article at the time of damage or loss.  A very worn garment is less valuable than an identical garment of the same age in good condition.  A garment also loses value with the passage of time, regardless as to whether or not its owner has obtained fullest use of it.

wornjeans

~With permission of the International Fabricare Institute (IFI)~

Wedding Gown Alterations

Altering a wedding gown is pretty much a given if you buy a dress “off the rack” and you are not 5’9″ with a perfectly proportioned body.weddinggown

Alterations for a wedding gown depend entirely on what needs to be altered and the style of the wedding dress.  There is no “standard” fee for altering a wedding gown. It will all depend on what needs to be done, how quickly, and how complicated the alteration is.

For gowns that have a great deal of lace, beading, and elegant cut-work, alterations are going to be very pricey, sometimes as much as half the price of the gown or more.  If you are wearing an heirloom gown, this might be worth it to you.  If you’re wearing a hand-me-down gown that you don’t like anyway, you might want to consider taking the $500 to $900 you’ll spend on significant alterations and find a gown that fits you.

That being said, alterations on a wedding gown are very common.  Hemming is the number one alteration done on any wedding gown.  For a straightforward hem that is not asymmetrical and has no additional lining, petticoat, or crinoline, you’re looking at $75 minimum.  If you have multiple layers, train, and bustle that also need to be taken up, multiply that charge by the number of layers and that will give you a ballpark fee for your alterations.

Some hemming actually has to be done at the waistline of the dress. This is for wedding dresses that have hems that are finished with lace, beading, or cutwork that cannot be   
hemmed.  This type of hemming can be more expensive because of the intricate work that needs to be done to re-cut the skirt portion of the dress to fit the bodice, as well as the zipper or Loop and Lace fastening that will need to be redone.

Bodice alterations that are simple and straightforward will   
cost an average of $30 for a pair of seams. For bodices that   
have multiple layers, built-in corsets, or beadwork or cutwork over the seams, this price will go up.

Care Labels

texcareThe Federal Trade Commission (FTC) requires that garment manufacturers attach a label providing directions for at least one safe method of care. The care label must be easy to find, permanently attached, and remain legible throughout the life of the garment. The manufacturer must have a reason for the recommended care instructions and must warn about any part of the care method that would harm any component of the garment or other garments that may be drycleaned or laundered with it. A care label must also warn when there is no method for cleaning— these typically read: “Do Not Dry Clean,” “Do Not Wash.” The Care Label Rule applies to all clothing except: suede and leather garments, hats, gloves, socks, footwear, reversiblegarments, and household items such as draperies, linens, and upholstered furniture.

American Care Symbols

The Care Label Rule allows for the use of the American Care Symbol System. The symbols may appear along with or in place of written care instructions. We rely upon our professional affiliation with the Drycleaning & Laundry Institute as a resource for interpreting non-conforming instructions and symbols.

Common Care Label Terms and What They Mean

DRYCLEAN: Any drycleaning process can be used and may include moisture, pressing by steam or steam-air procedures, and drying up to 160ºF.
PROFESSIONALLY DRYCLEAN: The item may be cleaned by varying from a normal drycleaning process. The care label must provide specific instructions.
SPOT CLEAN ONLY: The only thing that can be done is stain removal without immersing or otherwise cleaning the entire garment.
HAND WASH: This is a gentle soaking process with very limited agitation by hand. Other information may include specific water temperature and drying requirements.
MACHINE WASH: This instruction indicates that use of either a commercial or home washer is acceptable. The type of cycle may be specified, such as a gentle cycle. Other information may include specific water temperature, drying requirements, and bleaches that can or cannot be used.
BLEACH: Care labels on washable garments will usually indicate if bleach can be used and, if so, which type is appropriate. Common terms include: “Do Not Bleach,” “Non-Chlorine Bleach Only,” or “Bleach When Necessary.” If the type of bleach is not specified, any type may be used.
TUMBLE DRY: Most garments have tumble or machine drying instructions along with recommended temperatures such as low, medium, durable or permanent press, hot, or no heat. If no temperature is recommended, the garment can be tumbled in a hot dryer.
LINE AND DRIP DRY: This instruction means that the garment should be placed on a clothesline or hanger when removed from the washing machine. If a garment is heat sensitive, the label may state, “Line Dry Away from Heat.”
DRY FLAT: Usually found on garments susceptible to stretching when wet (such as sweaters), this instruction entails placing the garment on a towel in order to absorb moisture as it dries or using a drying rack with an open grid that allows air to circulate completely around the garment.
IRON: If ironing is recommended, iron or temperature settings are usually stated. Instructions may include: “Cool/Low Iron,” “Warm/Medium Iron,” “Hot Iron,” “Iron on the Wrong Side Only,” “Steam,” “Do Not Steam,” “ Iron Damp.” If no temperature or setting is stated, the highest setting can be used.

Does Washable Also Mean Drycleanable or Vice Versa?

It may or may not. The manufacturer is only required to list one method of safe care no matter how many methods could also be used safely. And they do not have to warn if other methods would damage the garment.

Using a Care Method Not Specified on the Label

If a different care method is undertaken, there is some risk. We may, at times, suggest an alternative method based upon our knowledge, skill, or the type of soil or stains on the garment; or you may request a different method. Either way, we will carefully consider all options and advise you before beginning any requested process and may ask that you sign a release from responsibility form.

If There Is No Label

All garments sold in the United States must have a care label. An appropriate care label must also be made available when purchasing fabric that will be used for clothing. Removing the care label entails some risk since care information or warnings are no longer available.