The first sign of spring in New York feels like an April Fool’s prank. You sneak out of the house in a light coat after surviving a long winter of wooly layers, parched skin, and too many carbs, twitchy and convinced that nature will humiliate you with a snowstorm before you reach your street corner. To be fair, spring on the East Coast doesn’t settle in overnight, so it will be a while before we can confidently ditch the coat, and finally retire our sweaters. But, this is prime time to think about how to prepare your beloved sweaters for summer hibernation and ensure they look their best when winter rolls back around.
If you don’t already, I highly recommend getting into the habit of cleaning, repairing, and storing your seasonal wardrobes with utmost care and attention. Nothing feels better than putting on a freshly laundered soft sweater at the start of fall, pressed, and ready for a winter of wear.
I’ve always dry cleaned my sweaters and coats at the end of winter before putting them away; an expense I justified because I was sure it was the best way to care for them. However, I recently learned from photographer and aspiring Martha Stewart prodigy Christine Suarez that there is a better way. Suarez has sweater care down to a zen art. She came to my house to show me how easy it is to care for and clean your sweaters and how much better the result is than dry cleaning. I don’t think I’ll ever dry clean my sweaters again.