How to Make Clothes Last Longer

Making clothes last longer

Taking good care of your clothing means you can wear them for longer.  Of course that’s not always good.  I’ve been to several meetings recently where the pants I was wearing were older than many of my colleagues in attendance!  The pants have been around so long, they’re thankfully back in style.  It all comes back in fashion, doesn’t it?  As long as it’s not the dirndl skirt that’s coming back.  Please no dirndl skirts!  Here are my 5 top tips for making clothes last longer.

How to make clothes last longer

  1. Put your clothes in the dryer for 10 minutes or less to get wrinkles out, then hang dry.  Use racks or hangers to hang.  Hang clothing upside down so that no clothespin marks are left on your shoulder seams.  No one likes big dimples in their shoulder seams.
  2. Wash your clothes inside-out.  That way the wear and tear is on the inside.  Plus, that’s generally where clothes are more dirty, unless you’ve spilled while eating, in which case I suggest soaking your garment before washing.  And, consider an adult bib – otherwise known as an over-the-head apron.
  3. Air your dirty laundry – yes, this is the only time I’m advocating  airing out your dirty laundry – hang your clothes up after you’ve worn them and let them air out, especially dry clean only garments.  Let the smells escape and you’ll find you can wear them again rather than cleaning more often.
  4. Always clean your woolens before storing, including your wool blankets.  Moths are attracted to body smells and will make holes in your beloved cashmere sweater.
  5. Skip the moth balls and tuck a lavender sachet into your woolens when you store them.  Moth balls have been shown to cause cancer and lavender smells much better.  You can even make one yourself….

How do you make your clothing last longer? Any tips you’d add to this list?

Go Gingham related links:

Cleaning wool blankets – DIY and save the dry cleaning costs
Mitered cloth napkins I made from an old Ralph Lauren dirndl skirt
How to take apart a skirt to use for something else –like cloth napkins?
How to remove tags from clothing
BlogHer Food and too much fun – a good example of clothing coming back into style!

6 thoughts on “How to Make Clothes Last Longer

  1. We used to have a cedar closet to store our wool clothes and blankets in – but not in the new house. I didn’t know about the lavender sachet tip before – I’ll have to make some with my dried lavender this year.


    1. Heidi, it’s super easy to make the sachets yourself. I’m sure with your hot weather that your lavender is ready to go! Ours has grown so much recently and I need to go cut it way back.


  2. Heidi, the lavender is much better than cedar – smells pretty and works! Making sure clothes get stored cleaned and not dirty is key. Thanks for the comment.


  3. Can I add? If you have soft water, use less detergent in your machine. If you have hard water, use less detergent plus some laundry soda. When I had a repairman out, he said the worst thing you can do for your clothing and your machine is to use the full amount of detergent that the soap companies recommend. He said the detergent contributes to the breakdown of the fibers, as well as corrosion in the machine.
    My other thing, that I’m trying to get my kids to follow up on, is to always hang clothes as you take them off.
    Thanks for the posts.


  4. My Mother was always a stickler for starching and pressing clothes. We NEVER left home without fresh, pressed clothes. The idea stuck… I find that my clothes last longer when pressed. It also helps with spills. Spills don’t get deep into the fibers as easily.

    Also, I have found a great stain remover. Murphy’s Oil Soap sprayed on stains (food based, oil or grease, grass)will wash out easily when sprayed prior to washing. Works great!!


    1. Leigh Ann, your mom sounds lovely. I can understand, too. I love having nicely pressed clothing to put on when I’m checking out my closet. Taking clothes out of the dryer after 1o minutes really helps cut down on wrinkles, too. Thanks, Leigh Ann! Glad you stopped by 🙂


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