Spring Cleaning: Wash Your Wool Sweaters

A step-by-step guide on How to Wash your Wool Sweaters
Yes! You can hand wash your wool sweaters and save a bundle over dry-cleaning!

Yes. I am suggesting you hand wash your wool or cashmere sweaters.

I know they have a “Dry Clean” only tag on them. But, if the first material listed on your sweater is either “wool” or “cashmere” be assured they can be safely hand washed.

Too chicken to try it?

That’s ok. I started hand washing my sweaters years ago after I picked up a load of dry cleaning and it cost us $80.

$80 is a nice dinner out with my husband. With dessert. And wine.

Not to mention, although I use a “green” dry cleaner (with a drive through!), dry cleaning isn’t the most environmentally beneficial service out there. I like that I save $ and lessen my impact. So, maybe try it on one of those sweaters that you aren’t overly attached to? I think you’ll be pleased with the results!

So what do you think? Ready to give it a try?

Here is what you need:

Step One to Wash a Wool Sweater:

Wash a Wool Sweater

Fill a large sink with water that is a little cool to the touch. Not cold. Just a bit cool. Add 1 Tablespoon castile soap.

Step Two – Swish:

Step 2 Wash a Wool Sweater

Swish the sweater around. Make sure you aren’t squishing or pulling or otherwise destroying any of the fibers.

Gentle is the key.

Got something stuck on? I put a little soap directly on it and just gently try to work it off.

Drain the water and refill the sink with the same cool temperature water.

Squeeze the sweater to get the soap out.

Repeat as often as necessary.

Step 3 – Squeeze in a Towel:

Step 3 Wash a Wool Sweater

Drain the water off your sweater and give it a few gentle squeezes. Lay it out flat on a white or light colored towel.

Step 4 – Roll in a Towel:

Step 4 Wash a Wool Sweater

Place another towel over the top of the sweater and roll it up. You will be amazed at how much water this absorbs.

Unroll the towels and place the sweater on a fresh, dry towel.

Shape the sweater by lying it flat.

It should look like it did in step 3.

Leave the sweater out to dry.

You actually want to find a place out of the sun, so it doesn’t fade.

This happens to be the hardest part of this process for me. To find a place where I can leave a few sweaters out of the way. If you have a card table lurking someplace, I find it handy to pull it out and use it to place a few sweaters on.

There you have it! How to Wash your Wool Sweaters!

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  1. i used to do this years ago. its alooooooooot of work if you have gobs of sweaters!

  2. Great guide, looking after you knitwear is well worth it!

  3. Anytime I have ever tried to hand wash a wool sweater, it immediately shrinks up to about 1/2 its original size – doesn’t that always happen when wool gets dunked in water?

  4. Hi Jojo, I’ve been handwashing my wool sweaters for the last few years to save $ and haven’t had any shrinkage. Just keep them away from heat! Andrea

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