How to store your sweaters

A lot of folks think to themselves, "I'm putting away my sweaters for the summer. I wonder if the interwebs have any tips on how to store them?"

Well, we here at Lands' End certainly do have some tips. We're experts in sweaters and here are our tips for keeping your sweaters in tip-top shape in the off-season.

Tip #1: Clean your sweaters before you pack them up

Follow the instructions on the little tags inside. Some are dry clean; some are hand wash, lay flat to dry; some are machine washable. Apparently, you can't just spray men's sweaters with Febreze or put a little deodorant under the arms and call it good. (Voice of experience talking here.) And if you're thinking of packing them up with dryer sheets in hopes of them smelling fresh when you unpack them, make sure the dryer sheet isn't in direct contact – it could stain. It’s also very important that the sweaters are bone dry when you pack them up. Be extra, extra cautious. If they are even a little bit wet, they could get moldy and/or ruined. So, be 100% sure when you pack them up that they are dry!

Tip #2: Wrap them up

After cleaning, sweaters can be stored in brown paper bags lined with cedar shavings then wrapped in aluminum foil. Or that may be how you prepare salmon fillets for grilling. A little experimentation on your part should answer this.

Some sweaters come with little linen bags designed for this storage. If yours did, give it a try and let us know how it worked out because we've used most of our linen bags for shopping at the farmer's market. Mmmmm, fresh vegetables!

Tip #3: Store your sweaters out of direct sunlight

This may seem obvious. After all, who puts their Christmas sweaters out on the roof to store them? That would be silly. We here at Lands' End like the idea of putting men's sweaters in a vault of some sort to absolutely ensure no direct sunlight would come in contact with them. If you don't have access to a vault, safety deposit boxes can be rented at your local bank for a reasonable monthly fee. Or if you live next to a cave, that might work.

In all seriousness, maybe pack them up, store them in some storage bins, and put them in a dark closet or attic. The darker and drier, the better!

Tip #4: No matter where you store sweaters, you'll want to make sure moths can't get to them

Since moths can't breathe underwater, common sense says you could safely store your men's Christmas sweaters in a fish tank. We don't know if goldfish eat wool, but they sure go for those little fish-food flakes, don't they? They swim right to the top of the water so cute and gobble them up as soon as you drop the food in. We don't have any fish at this particular part of the internet, but we do have a dog. She doesn't eat fish flakes but does like a good wool sock now and then, so you probably shouldn't keep sweaters where dogs can eat them.

Some people keep their sweaters in cedar chests to safely guard their sweaters against moths and other bugs. Another old and natural trick is to place lavender sachets around the sweaters (again, maybe make sure they aren’t directly touching the sweaters, to be safe) to stave off moths.

Tip #5: The ultimate storage solution

Given all this, it seems obvious that the ideal storage solution for sweaters is to wrap them in aluminum foil and put them in a vault at the bottom of a lake. Place a reminder on your phone to retrieve them before the water freezes over and you're all set. Your sweaters will be in perfect condition and ready to go. It's just that easy!

We wish it was that easy! In all reality, there are many things you can do to protect your favorite wool sweaters and stave off moisture, bugs, and other disastrous consequences of not packing them properly. Just make sure you clean and dry them properly, wrap them, and put them somewhere out of direct sunlight that has protection from creepy crawlies. You should be good to go then.


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