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Many people avoid buying wool clothing and blankets because they do not want to deal with the hassle and expense of dry cleaning them. You might wonder if it is possible to wash wool by hand without shrinking it, and you should know that this can be a much simpler process than it is normally made out to be.

Before you begin the washing process, be sure to check the fiber content of your wool product. If your clothing or blanket contains more than 50 percent wool or animal fiber, it is at risk of shrinking. If your sweater is a wool blend of acetate or acrylic, then it is less likely to shrink. However, if the acrylic content is high and the wool content low, you still cannot wash the piece with hot water because acrylic loses its elasticity when exposed to heat. Never dry wool in the dryer as the heat will cause it to shrink.

Considerations for Washing Wool

Answering the questions below can prove beneficial when you are deciding whether you should wash your wool items by hand or if you should dry clean them. Of course, always read and follow the directions written on the clothing or blanket tag. The manufacturers provide this advice for a reason. After you have consulted the direction on the tag, you can determine your method of cleaning by following a couple of guidelines. The first points that you need to consider before deciding to wash wool items at home include:

  1. Is it woven or knitted?
  2. Is the weave or knit open or tight?
  3. Is the wool fabric heavy and furry, or smooth and thin?
  4. Does the garment have a sewn-in lining?
  5. Is there more than 50 percent animal fiber or wool?
  6. Is it blended with acrylic or an acetate?

It is important to understand that wool shrinks more than any other fiber. For instance, wool knits are more likely to shrink than woven wool. The reason for this is that the knitwear yarn is more fuzzy and bulky and has considerably less twist when produced. While woven fabric can still shrink, it will not shrink as noticeably as a crocheted or knitted piece would because the yarn design is tighter and more compact. Also, treating wool suiting during the finishing process helps prevent shrinkage.

Post time: Mar-15-2021