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Storing Heirloom Clothing

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In storing heirloom clothing properly, your keepsake-items can last through generations.

These items were made by myself and my mom for my daughter. My mom did the knitted outfit, and I did the design and sewing of the other pieces. With the exception of the “My 1st Christmas” piece which is a treasure that she received as a Christmas gift.

I’m following the model of careful storage for these treasured pieces to ensure that they stay in good shape for the long term.

The prime guiding principle is to make sure that all clothing is properly cleaned and aired before storing. Any dirt left on clothing before storage can destroy it over time.

If you want to take an extra step, you can remove metal buttons from clothing to avoid the risk of staining, and store the buttons in an acid-free envelope to be sewn back on later. I’ll do that for this little jacket, my daughter’s first suit.

Ideally, use acid-free paper and an acid-free box for storage. The box should be large enough to allow for air circulation. The acid-free paper can be used to hold the shape of sleeves and such, and prevent creases that can affect the garment over time.

The best place to store the box is in a dark closet way from any drafts or window walls. As humidity is something to avoid in the care of fabrics and clothing.

And about once a year, take out your items to inspect for damage, then repackage them and return to the box. When well cared for, your treasured pieces can serve as fond reminders of days gone by. These items will for me.

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