Silk is smooth and lustrous. The fiber is strong and elastic in relation to its fineness. Silk is fairly resistant to wrinkling, and is comfortable to wear because it is absorbent and dries rapidly. Silk releases soil readily, and accepts dyes and prints easily. It is adaptable to a variety of weaves and constructions, from sheer, whisper soft weaves to rich, heavily textured fabrics.
Although it is relatively strong for its apparent delicacy, silk does require some extra care to help it retain it's beauty.
Please take the time to read this information. It will assist you in maintaining and extending the life and pleasure of your silk garments.
DRY CLEANING YOUR SILK
Dry-cleaning solvents do not affect silk, so this is the safest way to care for silk. Some of the dyes used on silk may bleed or fade in water, and the sizing the manufacture used to add body might dissolve. When taking your silk garments to your dry-cleaner keep these things in mind:
- Take in a stained garment as soon as possible.
- Tell the dry-cleaner what the stain is, if possible.
- Be sure to point out unapparent spills, such as white wine or ginger ale.
- If there is a chafed are that has lost its color or luster, point this out so the dry-cleaner can give the item a special restoration bath.
The most silks are washable, but the dyes and design of the garment require delicate handling to maintain the color and fit. Always read the labels before washing, to ensure that you will be able to properly clean the garment at home. When washing your silk garments keep these things in mind:
- Use a mild soap and cool or lukewarm water. Strong alkaline detergents weaken silk.
- Wash each garment separately as dyes may bleed.
- Handle silk garments gently. Don't wring or twist the garment because silk is weaker when wet. After thorough rinsing, roll the item in a clean bath towel to remove excess moisture.
- Don't use pre-soak products or chlorine bleach; both will damage silk.
- Air dry the garment away from sunlight until damp dry. Use a padded or plastic hanger to distribute the weight of the wet garment.
- While damp, press the silk item from the wrong side with a dry iron at a warm (silk) setting.
- A steam iron at a low setting may be used, being sure the iron doesn't "spit," which would cause water spots. Iron the fabric dry. Use a press cloth when doing touch-ups on the right side of the garment.
GETTING THE WRINKLES OUT
Hang the dress into the bathroom. Make sure it hangs flat and is not touching any other surface. Close the bathroom door and start a hot shower. The steam from the shower will begin to loosen the wrinkles in the dress and will not damage it. Shake out the dress after getting out of the shower but before opening the bathroom door. This will help some of the wrinkles to fall out of the silk dress.
Hang the dress in another area of the house, near an electrical outlet, that allows you to walk completely around the dress to treat the wrinkles. Plug in an iron with steaming options near the dress and turn it to high.Hold the iron about six inches away from the dress and blast the wrinkles with steam from the iron. While hitting the wrinkles with one hand, use the other hand to tug slightly on the hem of the dress to help pull out the wrinkles. With a little perseverance even the worst wrinkles will come out with this method.
Place your iron on the lowest heat or silk setting. Some irons consider this the rayon setting. High heat damages the silk fabrics. Put a piece of light fabric on your ironing board and then place the silk dress right side down on top of the fabric. The fabric helps to absorb the excess heat from the iron. Test a small, out of sight area of your silk dress with the iron to make sure the heat will not damage your dress and that the iron doesn't stick to it. Decrease the iron's heat if you see damage. Continue to iron your dress on the fabric and with your iron on low heat setting. If your dress is not wrinkled in some spots, don't run the iron over it to avoid damage to the area. Hang your silk dress to cool when you're finished ironing.
USE CARE IN TENDING TO SPILLS
Since silk fibers are easily broken when wet, never attempt to remove a spill by rubbing. Instead, blot the are gently. If rubbing damages surface fibers, a permanent light area may appear. If you have already caused a light area on your garment by rubbing it, point it out to your dry cleaner. This damage can often be masked with a special treatment.
Sunlight will fade silk items and turn white silk garments yellow.
Beverages such as soft drinks, white wine and mixed drinks contain sugar. Spills may be colorless and disappear when they are dry, but later the sugar can cause yellow stains, especially if exposed to heat. Be sure to point out any such stains so they can be removed before dry-cleaning. If you spill something on your silk garment, do not put water on the spotted area. Water may set the stain or cause a permanent ring. Take the item to a dry cleaner as soon as possible.
PROTECT FROM PERSPIRATION
Perspiration contains salts that can damage the fabric if left to long. Perspiration turns alkaline on exposure to air. This can also damage silk. Dry clean the garment soon after it has become soiled. If you perspire heavily, consider wearing underarm shields.
Some dyes used on silk will bleed or change color when exposed to alcohol. Allow perfumes, deodorants, hair spray and toiletries containing alcohol to dry before you dress. These dyes are also very sensitive to alkaline agents. Many facial soaps, shampoos, hair spray, detergents, nail polish remover, and even toothpaste are alkaline enough to cause color loss or change. Do not polish nails while wearing a silk garment as nail polish can remove colour, damaging the fabric permanently. Hope you will love, enjoy and take good care of your silk item!