If you’ve ever bought a suit you would agree that buying one requires a hell of a lot of effort and attention to detail. You spend enormous amounts of money on suits, wear them with great pride and would love for them to last long, maybe even outlive you.
Having given so much to your suit, the last thing you would want is watching it fall apart before your eyes. With proper care and maintenance, however, you can ensure that your suit does not meet that fate. The moral of the story is that you need to actually take care of your suit in order to make it last long.
A suit that has been cared for will not only stay in good shape, it will also make you look dapper whenever you put it on. Not to be confused with your daily wear, which can be washed and worn repeatedly, the suit calls for better upkeep.
A well-maintained suit will not only make you look stylish, it will turn out to be more economic as well.
The rules for caring for a suit are simple. All you need to do is keep the below mentioned pointers in mind and watch as you add years to its life.
Don’t Send It to the Cleaners
We know you love that blue gray suit of yours, so why would you make the mistake of sending it over to the dry cleaners every time it needs to be cleaned?
While you may know better than to toss your precious suit into the washing machine, you also need to know that having it cleaned at the dry cleaners frequently can give it a good beating too.
That does not mean you never visit the cleaner (a few trips are inevitable), but feel free to do so when there is a visible buildup of dirt and/or odor. In fact, it is advised to get your suit spot-cleaned rather than having it cleaned entirely.
When your suit is being dry cleaned, it comes in contact with several harsh chemicals which can harm the fabric. A lot of cleaners take the cleaning process for granted and do not exercise enough caution, which may damage the suit. Hence, it is best to keep the dry cleaning to a minimal and steam clean it instead.
Even when hanging it in your closet, make sure you maintain some room between your suit and the other items around it to enable it to air out between wears.
Say No to Ironing
If you’re looking to make your suit wrinkle-free and deodorize it simultaneously, the garment steamer is your best bet. Not only will it give every fiber in your suit a new lease of life, it will also prolong its lifeline.
It is best to avoid using an iron to press your suit as the heat from it can damage the fabric, especially wool. If you must use it, place a press cloth as a barrier to protect the wool.
While steamers may be expensive to buy, if you think about the benefits you derive from it in the long term, you will realize that it’s a small price to pay. However, do make it a point to avoid steaming the areas that aren’t wrinkled, else you risk altering the shape of the internal canvas of your suit. Stick only to areas which are visibly crumpled.
Hang It Well
Do ensure that you hang your suit in an area where it will be able to breathe. Also, avoid hanging it on one of those fragile metal hangers, as they tend to bend due to the weight of the suit, which defeats the purpose of hanging the suit altogether.
It is advised that you use sturdy wooden hangers to retain the shape of your fine suit. Make sure the edges of the hanger are wide enough to fill and support the shoulders of the suit jacket. Natural wooden hangers can be your suit’s best friends as they absorb the moisture from the fabric, leaving it fresh and devoid of odor.
Brush It Off
Brushing your suit after every wear helps keep them clean. Over time, its fiber can accumulate and hold dust, dirt, lint, loose hair (and even dandruff particles) from the environment which can stay there. A suit brush along with a lint roller will help you get rid of that and extend the longevity of your suit.
Simply hang your suit jacket and begin brushing gently in a downward motion. You can start with the shoulders and brush your way down.
Packing It Up
Most of us tend to get stuck on this question – how to pack a suit jacket? Well, the answer to that lies in the garment bag. Use it carry your suit along safely when travelling. Make sure that you use a bag that is capable of protecting your suit and is easy to carry. It should be light-weight and made of a material that allows your suit to breathe.
The best way to pack a suit in the absence of a garment bag is by folding and packing it in a regular bag in a way that minimizes the formation of wrinkles on it.
There is a high probability that you will not have access to a steamer when you’re travelling. In such cases, you can remove the suit from the garment bag and hang in your bathroom when taking a hot shower. The steam from the shower should leave your suit looking spruced up and relatively wrinkle-free.
Give It Some Time Off
Sure there will be times when you will be required to wear your suit consecutively for two or three days. As far as possible, avoid repeating the same suit very often to prevent it from wearing out.
The fibers of your suit need time to repose and recuperate to look their best again. It is, therefore, important that you rotate your suits throughout the week to give them a much-needed and a well-deserved break.
It is important not to view your suit as any other ordinary garment, but as an investment. To enable it to live long, you need to respect it and learn about caring for it in the right way. Suits are supposed to last a lifetime and are typically replaced only if its design has fallen out of fashion. In many ways, the way a person cares for his suit is a reflection of his personality. The above tips should enable you to care for your suit and keep it looking sharp enough to be worn to all events.