Hand-washing, airing and properly storing your Aran wool sweater are some simple tips you can apply to care for and extend the durability of your favorite wool wear. Now that you have purchased your new Aran wool sweater you most probably have unpacked it, tried it on to see if it fits, fingered the dense wool affectionately, and appreciated the complex knitting style. Then you dutifully repacked and lodged it in a comfy location in your closet, patting yourself on the back for such a quality choice. Or, if you are the less prudent type, you’ve transferred it to the less explored area of your wardrobe, untouched and unpacked, after all, winter is still months away. Rightly so. In some other cases, your Aran wool sweater is a regular clothing choice and you enjoy putting it on now and then. Either way, it will interest you to know that your Aran wool sweater deserves more care than you think.
Let’s see why.
Like most knitwear, your Aran sweater is made of 100% wool, and when it comes to wool products there can be some concerns. Storing up your Aran sweater in the attic, shelf, or drawer till winter might be the right thing to do since you don’t wear them now. However, the possibilities of moth infection tell you there is more to do to safeguard your favorite Aran sweater. Moths are known to feed on animal fibers like fur, wool, or silk. When left unchecked, clothes moths can cause serious damage to wool materials. If you wear your Aran sweater a lot, you might notice some tiny fuzzy bobbles on the fabric. When bobbles appear on clothes, you’d agree that they make them look somewhat unappealing. These bobbles are caused by friction with the skin or hard surfaces. Pilling is another symptom of a degrading cloth. Aran sweaters can begin to show pills when they are bunched up with other fabric. Though pilling does not occur often with wooly materials, you should reconsider clumping your Aran sweater with polyester clothes for a long time. Hopefully, these unwanted fabric damages will scare you into taking extra care of your Aran sweater when you wear or store them up for cold periods.
How long do Aran sweaters last?
Knowing how long Aran sweaters last gives us a clue into how much we need to care for them. The origin of Aran sweater-making back in the 1950s gives some idea. At the time wives of Irish fishermen living on the Aran islands began to knit Aran sweaters for their husbands, they recognized the need to make them durable and long-lasting enough to toughen out the cold conditions of sea-faring. Given their living conditions, some of these local fishermen wore their Aran sweaters throughout their lives. So, we can historically affirm the long-lasting nature of Aran sweaters.
Also, the generational existence of Aran sweaters, which spans over a hundred years tells volume of its durability. While the 1950 Irish fishermen’s families had created them out of necessity, the increase in its commercial value transcended its quality till now. Today, Aran sweaters with their intricate designs remain a fascinating fashion statement. The truth is, your Aran sweater lasts as long as you care for it. By applying the necessary care as will be discussed below you will not only use your Aran sweater for as long as it fits you but it will remain a top-quality fashionable garment you can rock.
Can you wash your Aran wool?
The precise answer to this question is an absolute yes. However, on deeper consideration, you might want to weigh in related questions. Can I wash my Aran wool sweater the way I wash my other clothes? Do I need to take care special care when washing my Aran sweater? Your Aran wool sweater is not like any other clothing material in your closet. Just as you shouldn’t clump it up with polyester clothes to avoid pilling, Aran sweaters have to be washed differently. The first thing you should know about washing Aran sweaters is that you should not wash them often. Yes, that’s probably a perk to it. Wool clothes generally stay fresher when washed occasionally. You should note that the wool used in making Aran sweaters are popularly Irish, Merino and cashmere. This means that the washing intervals vary – Merino wool should be washed more frequently while cashmere wool should be washed less frequently.
As to the washing process, there are unending debates as to whether Aran wool sweaters can be washed with a washing machine or should be hand-washed. Notwithstanding, it is better advised to hand-wash your Aran sweater. The process is not cumbersome. Wash your Aran wool in lukewarm water with delicate detergents. You can find detergents with labels indicating suitability for wool. Massage the sweater gently and rinse well. Spin-drying your Aran sweater is a step you can forgo to keep it sturdy. You can also reshape it while it is damp to maintain the desired shape. Airing your Aran sweater in the humid condition is better to sun-drying it. In fact, you can air it from time to time between wears.
How do you soften an Aran wool sweater?
Softening your Aran sweater will make wearing it comfortable. Sometimes, wooly fabrics can be discomforting especially when worn directly on the skin. By making it pliable and softened you have a better experience with your Aran sweater. A simple DIY method for softening your Aran sweater is by using shampoo and a hair conditioner. First, you should prepare a water solution using lukewarm water. Add a quarter of mild shampoo into the lukewarm water and stir gently until it is well mixed and soapy. Drain the water and re-immerse the sweater into another solution of lukewarm water and 6 tbsp of hair conditioner. Mix thoroughly until it is fully saturated. Allow the sweater to absorb the solution well for about 10 minutes before you drain. Without wringing the sweater, air it under humid conditions.
Your Aran sweater is special wear for multiple occasions including the winter period. By adequately caring for it you can sustain its durability and quality. Keep in mind that these care tips are not necessarily exhaustive. You can seek professional advice to determine the best care methods for your Aran wool sweater.