As with so many of life’s luxuries, a little bit of care goes a long way. This is certainly true of knitwear: there’s nothing worse than coming to wear your favourite jumper, only to discover that it has become misshapen, stained, or even worse, plagued by moths.
To save you from any of these frustrations, we gathered together our team of fabric experts to bring you the essential tips on looking after your Sunspel merino wool knitwear.
Regardless of whether you are machine or hand washing your knitwear, turn it inside out and use cool water (30 degrees) and a mild detergent. One that is Woolmark recommended (look for the Woolmark symbol on the bottle) is preferable and avoid using Bio detergents at all costs because they contain enzymes that can be harsh on wool. It’s not necessary to use softener but if you prefer to, only use a small amount as it can cause the fabric to pill and bobbly jumpers are almost as irritating as moth-eaten ones.
After washing, immediately lay your jumper flat on a light coloured towel. Re-shape – removing as many creases and folds as possible – and leave to dry.
You shouldn’t need to iron your Sunspel merino but if stubborn crumples do occur, use the wool setting and gently steam or try lightly spraying the garment with water before pressing as this encourages creases to lift. Avoid applying pressure as this can cause the wool to become shiny.
If pilling does occur, simply remove by hand or invest in a sweater comb from any good haberdashery. Take care to remove pills gently to avoid stretching or making holes.
Knitwear should be stored folded rather than hung as the weight of the garment can lead to stretching and the formation of humps at the shoulders where the hanger has been.
For long-term storage, we always advise taking the necessary steps to protect against pests. Most importantly, ensure the garment is clean as moths are attracted to perspiration and food spills. It’s a good idea to store knitwear in an airtight plastic bag or container but vacuum plastic bags should be avoided as they can be so tight that they force the garment out of shape. Mothballs can be used but they have a fairly unpleasant smell so we recommend using a natural alternative such as lavender, rosemary or cedar which are effective repellents and far sweeter smelling.