Your Knitwear Care Guide: How To Make Your Sweaters Last a Lifetime

Your Knitwear Care Guide: How To Make Your Sweaters Last a Lifetime

3 min reading time

It is peak sweater weather right now, people! There’s so much potential for layering, chic outfits, and cozy nights by a roaring fire (or baseboard heater). 

You might have recently stocked up on some cozy knits featured here at Grapefruit, or perhaps you’ve inherited a vintage knit collection. Either way, we’re thrilled that you’ll be living a woollen and cashmere dream. 

We’re here to help you make your sweaters last for years to come. If you’re new to the cozy, lived-in knit lifestyle or you need some extra tips on how to care for your knit sweaters, don’t sweat it — check out our comprehensive knitwear care guide:

Fuzz, pilling and holes — oh, my!

Let’s face it — knits are delicate. 

The most common materials used for knit sweaters are cashmere, wool blends, linen, polyester blends and cotton. Many of these listed fibres require special care and delicate storage to maintain their quality. 

Fuzz: Every throw on a newish sweater and notice a bit of frizzy ‘hair’ sticking out? Very common. To get rid of unwanted fuzz, we suggest periodically going over it gently with a razor while holding the material taut. There are also lint shavers and sweater combs available for purchase — typically at very economical prices. 

Pilling: Pilling is a common by-product of friction against the sweater. Usually, this crops up in hotspots on sweaters like the elbows, underarms and on the sleeves. To remove them, use an electric razor, a depiller device or your hands (although this will take some time).

Holes: A hole can develop from a loose button or on the collar (especially if it’s a turtleneck). Repair holes as soon as possible, as the fibres in the material will easily stretch around the opening.  

The Storage Bible 

Store your sweaters in a dry, room temperature area free of dust. Try to avoid hanging them, as this can cause them to lose their shape. If you must hang them up, make sure the sweater is fully dry and not an oversized cut. 

When prepping for seasonal storage, be sure to wash all of your sweaters and fully dry before folding them away. Even a bit of damp in the fibres can cause mold or mildew.

Mold and mildew are next to impossible to remove and can potentially spread to nearby stored clothing. Not to mention that the smell is distinct and difficult to get rid of. Store your folded sweaters with cedar balls or dry bay leaves for freshness.

General Washing Instructions

The key takeaway here, if nothing else, is to never machine-wash or machine-dry your sweater unless the washing guidelines specify otherwise. If the instructions seem unclear, always err on the side of caution. 

Wash by hand only using warm water and mild soap. There are even specialized wool or cashmere soaps available for purchase. Be sure to wash in a clean bathtub or large bowl. 

As for drying, avoid wringing your garment out. Instead, lay a clean towel down, place the sweater on top followed by another towel and roll while pressing to release the excess water. This will probably get a bit messy, so it’ll be handy to have some extra towels available. 

Let air dry flat or on a dry rack for as long as it takes. Feel free to open a nearby window to help speed up the process. 

Grapefruit Has What You Need

We love your sweaters. You love your sweaters. This care guide is your key to making them last a lifetime.

Need a hand picking out an enviable fall wardrobe? Or do you simply need more sweaters? We don’t blame you. Visit us at our location in the Village, call us at (416) 519-7288 or if you can’t make it to our spot, check out our fall lineup on our online store!


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