Between dry clean this, gentle cycle that, it seems like every piece of clothing we own suddenly demands its own set of specific care directions. And it’s funny, hand-washing always seems like the most arduous task when you first read it on a clothing label. Like, really? I can’t just use the washing machine? But here’s the honest truth: hand-washing is the easiest. thing. ever. We’ll elaborate in a minute.
But first, to explain why hand-washing is uber important—especially for Uwila Warrior’s silk garments—we turned to UW’s NYC-based fabric specialist, Samantha Benassai, technical designer with Angora Group.
So when it comes to Uwila Warrior silks, why hand-wash?
“Hand-washing will guarantee the longest life span of your undies and camis, keeping the colors and fabric looking its best,” she says. All the friction the item endures in the washing machine can make the fabric deteriorate more quickly, she goes on to explain. “This causes pilling to form more quickly, in addition to stretching it out, making the item look worn out and compromising the fit over the long term.”
It's also important to follow the other care notes on the label, like wash in cold water, to prevent shrinking, and lay flat to dry, she adds. The excessive temperature and heat can dull the fabric, and you risk shrinkage. “And again, the friction in the dryer may cause yarn breaks or pilling. They don't call them delicates for nothing!”
All that being said, many Uwila customers do wash their silks in the washing machine and dryer. Their garments just don't last as long as they could.
How do you actually hand-wash clothes?
Unless you watched your mom hand-wash her delicates, it’s not uncommon to not really know what to do. Here’s how it simple it is. Fill a clean sink or a small plastic bucket with cold water and a teaspoon of gentle liquid detergent. Soak and swish your undies for a few minutes (clock in a few Fitbit steps while you’re at it), then drain and refill your sink with clean water, so you can rinse out the soap. Lay flat (or hang) to dry. Way better than having to buy new underwear too soon after your last purchase, right?
And what if one really doesn’t want to hand-wash?
Good news for Uwila Warrior shoppers. Our next production round of fabric for the Happy Seams (first delivery from May onward) will have more consumer-friendly care instructions, says Benassai. “They will state that you can machine wash gentle cycle at 20-30 degrees Celsius, and lay flat to dry. Since this new fabrication is more resilient, it can withstand the rough and tumble of machine washing.” The modern woman has to have options, right? (And again as we said earlier, many shoppers already toss their undies in the washing machine regardless of the care instructions!)
Stay tuned for more fabric education coming up on the blog soon. It’s a topic we love to talk about, because every fiber that goes into our fabrics is important to us—and should be for you too. In the meantime, check out these tagless silk camisoles.