Plastic not Fantastic!

Oh Oh!!..... As many of you will aleady know our little basement flat has a bit of a mould problem, and as a result I am fastidiuous about storing my vintage clothes - I have anti moth cedar clothes hanger toppers, moth repellant bags, garment bags and I often keep dry cleaning bags over dresses to keep them safe...

Although.. apparently it doesn't keep them safe!... when flicking through blogs this morning I caught a sentence on the New York Times blog (before the paywall intervened and my screen went black!) that said plastic bags are bad for clothes!..

Panic then took over and I searched for this ...

'YES! Plastic will act as a vapour barrier liner and trap any air moisture against the fibers. If the garment and bag spend anytime in daylight, the plastic also acts as a rather crude lens and discolours clothing with fading and 'offgassing' of the various chemicals in the petrochemical ingredients. The so called 'breathable' bags fail in that soiling particulates can enter just as easilly as moisture egresses'

Ditch them.
Clothes need to breathe, particularly after ingesting all those toxins at the cleaners :--)

For storage in the closet, you may instead want to make dust covers to keep it clean.'

Noooo...... I need to go home and remove all plastic from my wardrobe now!!... in fact maybe just empty my wardrobe and start again! (obsessive - maybe? but you dont want to see the tantrum when an item of clothing gets ruined!)

A few internet solutions i have found include
'i buy suit covers made out of treated cotton.'

'i also have activated charcoal granules in the bottom of my wardrobe to absorb any moisture.'

and the original site that the Times mentioned...
The Butlers closet... gives some great tips..

  • Remove dry cleaning bags as they are made from petroleum and emit gases that can harm your wardrobe.
  • Depending on the fabric, you should brush your clothes gently after they have been worn. Let your clothes air before putting them back into your closet.
  • Clothes should be allowed to rest for at least a day before being worn again.
  • Wool suits can benefit from a "steam bath" to remove wrinkles and odors. Close doors and windows in the bathroom and run hot water to create a steamy atmosphere. Hang the suit from the curtain rod or a hook and leave it in the room for a while. Then take it out and let it dry completely before putting it into the closet.
  • Use hangers that hold clothes securely. Avoid thin wire hangers that can leave rust or create
    a sharp crease at the shoulder line.
  • Hang skirts or pants using a hanger with two flat sides, rather than folding pants over a suit hanger bar or using hangers with clips.
  • Leave buttons on suit jackets unbuttoned while hanging in the closet. This allows the jacket to retain its natural shape as it airs.
  • Arrange clothing for easy access; move out-of-season clothing to another closet—making sure everything has been washed or dry cleaned before being stored.
  • Clothing with stains or perspiration should not be put back in the closet. Residue from stains can attract insects.
  • Store laundry to be cleaned separately—not in your main closet.
  • Make sure your closets are cool and dry. Damp conditions will encourage mildew.

A few other solutions appear to be customising t-shirts and pillowcases into garment bags... but at this rate i'm not going to be able to choose what to wear without emptying a pile of pillowcases on my bed!

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