While the word "sweater" may conjure images of warm, cozy garments for the winter months, cotton sweaters are a lighter, seasonless garment that can be worn year round with comfort. Because cotton yards display color very nicely, cotton sweaters are often found in bright colors and delightful patterns, thus appealing to just about anyone. Cotton sweaters are also versatile, going from the office to a nice evening on the town quite effortlessly.
As cotton is finer fiber, caring for a cotton sweater is important. It is not difficult, but it does require that the wearer pays close attention to the tag on each sweater. If you are machine laundering your sweater, water temperature is not as important as once thought. While cold water prevents bright colors from fading, hot water helps to eliminate stains, odor and body moisture. It is, however, extremely important not to dry the sweater in hot temperatures, as this causes the fibers to fuse together and shrink. If you are hand-washing, as many tags will instruct you to do, there are a few tips to follow:
- Turn the sweater inside out to prevent outside fibers from catching or snagging on nails, rings, faucets or other external factors.
- Fill the sink with tepid water and a dime sized amount of good quality (preferably natural) detergent.
- Immerse the sweater in the water, and swish around for a few minutes. Then, allow the sweater to stay submerged, untouched for about 20 minutes. This allows the water and detergent to penetrate the fibers deep.
- After this time, drain the soapy water while running cold water over the sweater. Do not knead or twist the sweater, as wet fibers are extremely vulnerable, and this will surely misshape the sweater. If you are lifting the sweater to help rinse out the bubbles, be sure to support the sweater from below.
- Allow the sweater to drain. Then, lay the sweater on a towel, roll the towel and press it. This will absorb the excess water out of the sweater.
- Unroll the sweater, and with your hands, shape it back into it's original shape.
- Let the sweater dry flat overnight. Turn the sweater over and again, shape it back into it's original shape, and let dry another night.