Sunday, February 14, 2010

How To Machine Wash A Wool Coat

It IS possible to machine wash a wool coat. There I said it.

I have an interview tomorrow and could'nt find suitable wool coat to wear over my suit. Looked through the shops in town and everything's too long for me.

So I bought this Tu Chuzy (not the Bondi store, but a UK label) wool coat from the Op shop. It was £18 but the saleslady let me have it for £16.

The coat is 68% wool, feels beautifully soft and has a funnel neck. (Good for huddling into when it's freezing.) Oh yes, and it fits too!

Since the dry cleaners could'nt clean it in time for my interview, I took a risk and machine washed it.

Now you're not supposed to machine wash wool coats because they can crumple, shrink, pill and the lining can go out of whack.

But it was a cheap coat and I really wanted it clean. I threw it in the machine by itself and put it through the wool cycle. The water MUST be cold or tepid. Any warmer and you'll shrink the coat.

Did'nt have wool detergent so I used shampoo. I put too much in and suds flowed out of the machine! If you use shampoo, remember that it creates more foam than laundry detergent.

I kept a mop handy to sop up the overflow and poured in extra cold water to dilute the shampoo-water down. After the cycle finished, I had a fresh smelling clean coat!

I hung it straight away above a heater to dry. There was no shrinkage or crumples so I'm pleased with the results!

Disclaimer: Not recommended for wool coats with a very high wool content and if in doubt, definitely dry clean it. Don't even try it if it has pleats or special detailing.

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