Tips For Preserving and Storing Vintage Clothing
Here are some tips for preserving and storing your vintage baby clothing and special occasion sets:
Tip #1: Use Cotton Heirloom Preservation Bags For Storage
Vinyl keepsake bags are used for shipping and temporary storage in the retail environment. While these bags will provide short-term protection from dust and dirt, the chemicals in the vinyl will damage your vintage textiles over time and break down the integrity of the fabrics.
For the longevity of your vintage clothing, Stylish Vintage Baby offers baby heirloom preservation bags designed for long-term storage of your special occasion baby clothing and other vintage baby clothing treasures. These chemical-free cotton bags are the best option for storing your vintage baby clothing sets.
Tip #2: Hand Wash With An Enzymatic Cleaner
For a more detailed look at cleaning special occasion items and vintage baby clothing please see the article: Cleaning Tips for Preserving Vintage Clothing
Tip #3: Use a Dark, Dry Closet or Cedar Chest for Storage
Hang your vintage baby clothing on padded hangers constructed from natural fibers, without the use of harsh chemicals. Padded hangers are designed to prevent creasing and discoloration. Any vintage items you wish to store should be placed in a cedar chest or in a dark, dry closet.
Keep in mind that cedar does not kill insects. The natural aroma of cedar oil is an irritant that repels insects but if the wood becomes old and dried out, it will lose its effect. You an bring the aromas of the oil to the surface by sanding the interior of your cedar chest or closet every few years. If the wood is especially dry you can add a coat of cedar oil after sanding.
As cedar ages, it gives off gasses that can discolor and deteriorate fabrics that it comes in contact with. You can prevent this from happening by attaching a barrier film to the surface of the cedar walls and shelving. This will avoid physical contact between the cedar wood and your vintage garments and still give you the protection of the aroma of cedar oil. Cedar hangars pose the same potential to damage fabrics over time, so it is best to avoid their use for vintage garments you have in storage.
Tip #4: Mothballs Are Dangerous
Mothballs were used in the past to repel moths, however, they present serious health risks due to their chemical make-up. Children are especially susceptible to the side effects of the vapors and poisoning call occur if the mothballs are ingested.
The first step in deterring moth damage is to be sure that all stored vintage items are clean. Perspiration and food stains attract moth larvae which feed on soiled cloth. As well, be sure to vacuum the storage closet or cedar chest that stores your vintage clothing on a regular basis.
If you find that moth larvae have already set in and are damaging your vintage clothing, dry cleaning or thorough washing in hot water can be effective. Always read labels and refer to Stylish Vintage Baby's article: Cleaning Tips for Preserving Vintage Clothing
You can safely and effectively repel moths with the use of natural repellants including...
If your storage closet or chest smells of mothballs try lightly sanding and then using one of these safe and effective deodorizers:
dry coffee grounds
aromatic cedar blocks or chips
For those who love vintage baby clothing and special occasion garments, these tips can help you to preserve and store your vintage treasures for many years to come.