Protect Your Clothes While Soaking Up the Sun

Hawaiian shirt

Sometimes even the most innocent-looking products can bring worry to your relaxation wardrobe. Ward off unnecessary stress with these quick tips.

Tropical Threads
Potential Problem: Major color changes can occur in Hawaiian-style shirts, turning khaki garments green, as shown above. Linen clothing may shrink, fade, or distort.

Clothing Care:  Don’t assume elegant tropical shirts must be dry cleaned. Shirts with “wash” labels may lose a component color through dry cleaning. Use a gentle cycle and warm water for linen, then dry on a rack or hanger to minimize shrinkage.  Extra ironing will be necessary.

Antiperspirant
Potential Problem: Build-up from deodorant and antiperspirant products can cause fiber damage and yellowing.  Blue and green on silk and wool are particularly prone.  Aluminum chloride can weaken fibers in cotton, linen, rayon, and some synthetic blends, leaving holes during cleaning.

Clothing Care: Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for application. Avoid overuse and allow antiperspirant/deodorant to dry before dressing. Soiled garments should be washed or dry cleaned as soon as possible.

Sunblock and Suntan Lotions
Potential Problem: Dyes and oils in suntan/sunblock lotions can stain clothing. This color loss or change may not appear until after you clean your clothes.

Clothing Care: Avoid many stains by following the directions on the bottle, allow the lotions to dry before dressing, and wash your hands before handling clothes.

Swimwear
Potential Problem: Chlorine in pools, spas, and hot tubs can damage spandex used in swimwear.

Clothing Care: Rinse your suit after wearing and follow the care label’s instructions.

Self-Tanning Lotions
Potential Problem: Self-tanners may discolor anything they touch!  Light tan, brown, or yellow staining on the cuffs, collar fold, and neckband, and upper button areas, are typical.

Clothing Care: Follow the instructions carefully, being sure to wash your hands immediately and allow your skin time to dry before dressing.  If the product gets on your clothes, wash them as soon as possible, as these stains can be difficult to remove.

Insect Repellents
Potential Problem: Repellents usually will not damage most fibers; however, some products contain alcohol and can cause color loss or color change on fabrics such as acetate and rayon.

Clothing Care: Read the label carefully, especially if applying directly to clothing.

We Care for Bedspreads & Comforters

Comforter-CYPC-desktop

Bedding supplies typically last a long time. Comforters and bedspreads usually last five and six on average.

A bedspread is an outer covering for a bed that goes over the sheets and blankets. It is usually a decorative component of the bed set. A comforter is a quilted bed cover.

The cover consists of an outer face fabric, a center batting (usually a fiber mat or down), and a backing fabric. These three layers are held together with a stitched pattern or simulated stitching. The comforter may be used for decorative purposes, like a bedspread, or in place of a blanket.

Unlike clothing care labels, which provide instructions for how to properly care for the garments, the Federal Trade Commission’s Care Label Rule does not require permanent labels on home furnishings fabrics. Most bedspreads and comforters are sold with care instructions on a hang tag, a temporary label or on the packaging.

Possible Problems
While bedspreads and comforters are often long-term purchases, they can be subject to many problems in use and care. Possible problems include:

  • Stains: Stains can easily occur from spillage or contact with various substances in use. Once they have contacted the fabric, they may be difficult to remove. Factors affecting removal include the nature of the staining material and the age of the stain. The multiple thickness of bedspreads and comforters may also make removal difficult.
  • Color loss: Cleaning may cause color loss, a print to be diminished in color or a print to lose its original brightness. All coordinating pieces should be drycleaned or laundered at the same time and with the same process to prevent color variances within the set.
  • Shrinkage: Shrinkage of two to three percent or more can easily occur if the fabric is not completely preshrunk. This may cause the bedspread to not fit properly or appear much too small.
  • Improper construction: If comforters are not quilted with closed channels or pockets the filling material can shift in cleaning and use. Proper construction helps prevent shifting, fabric tears, and uneven appearance.
  • Stitching under stress: Stitches could break during cleaning if quilting lines are more than eight to 10 inches apart.

They may also break if the stitching thread was damaged in use or if the stitches are not secured properly at the end of the quilting line.

Preserving Your Household Textiles
While cleaners are clothing care experts, they also know a thing or two about household textiles, which, in addition to bedspreads and comforters, include draperies and curtains, blankets, upholstery, slipcovers, decorative pillows, rugs, and heirloom textiles.

To protect and prolong the beauty of your household textiles remember these basic tips:

  1. Protect all furnishings from sunlight, fumes, and pets.
  2. Damage, like tears, should be repaired immediately.
  3. Vacuum and/or brush to remove dust regularly.
  4. Follow the manufacturer’s cleaning recommendations.
  5. Don’t allow items to become extremely soiled.
  6. Have stains removed immediately.
  7. Don’t store household textiles that are not clean and stain free.

Caring for Winter Items

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The colder months are here and the seasonal summer stains are being put on ice and replaced with the stains and hassles of winter. As the temperature begins to drop, it is time to prepare yourself for some fall and winter festivities. Here are a few tips and considerations to think about when rolling with the seasons.

Cleaning Out the Closet
After a long slumber, your fall and winter clothes will need to be awakened and taken out of storage. Depending on how careful and attentive you were last spring when packing them away, you may have had some unwanted visitors over the summer months and will want to check your garments for signs of insect damage.

Insects such as crickets, ants, moths, beetles, and cockroaches tend to feed on clothes that were not cleaned properly before storing. Look for small holes, worn areas, and discolored lines on the portions of the garment that had spills or stains that were never removed.

The odor from moth balls or crystals is difficult to remove. Try airing the garments by hanging them outside in the shade. If this does not completely remove the odor, cleaning the garments may help.

Winter Wardrobe
The content of your wardrobe changes along with the seasons. Short skirts and short sleeve shirts will be replaced with winter coats and scarves. Following some of these cleaning tips may be useful.

When it comes to cleaning, the first and easiest step to take to ensure the best cleaning is to follow the manufacturer’s care label instructions. Many of your garments may be hand or machine washable. Minimize agitation to prevent matting and pilling of napped fabrics. Cleaners have pressing equipment that can reshape knits back to their original size. Follow recommended drying temperatures. Other materials such as wool, fur, and leather will require the assistance of a professional cleaner due to special cleaning and pressing procedures. Make sure to point out any known stains when you leave them with the cleaner.

Festive Outfits
Along with the cooler weather and good food that accompany the fall and winter months, you are also sure to be plagued by unforeseen stains during the many celebrations that occur in the final quarter of the year.

With the holidays come family gatherings, office functions, lavish dinners, and holiday stains. Many stains caused by cosmetics, oily foods, and beverages will get best results when pre-treated. Many festive dishes, unfortunately, contain ingredients that are not easily removed using household stain removal techniques and may require solvent-based treatments. Consult your dry cleaner if you are not sure what the best procedure would be.

Next time you change over from summer to fall, think about these tips and considerations so you can spend the winter months getting the most out of your winter wardrobe.

2016 Xmas Closed Dates

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Happy holidays to you and your families and all the best in your New Year.  Please note the extended closure dates:

Friday, Dec 23rd  — Closed,
Saturday, Dec 24th — Closed,
Monday, Dec 26th — Closed,

Monday, Jan 2nd — Closed.

Sorry for any inconvenience and hope you enjoy you holidays.

Nav Bains

 

Caring for Curtains & Drapes

drapes

Despite the availability of hundreds of labor saving devices and packaged products that claim to virtually eliminate housework, until a “magic solution” is found, curtains will still have to be cleaned the old-fashioned way.

Window treatments are an investment in time, money, and creativity, so protect your investment by purchasing the right kind of draperies for your needs and caring for them properly once they are purchased.

Know what you are buying. Ask about the fabric’s colorfastness, the suggested care process, its resistance to light and how this relates to the atmospheric conditions in your home.

Consider purchasing lined draperies. While they are more expensive than unlined draperies, they can have a much longer life.

If your draperies are custom-made, ask for preshrunk fabric, especially when installing floor-to-ceiling draperies. Read the care label carefully. Look for sun-resistant fabrics such as acrylic, modacrylic, polyester, nylon, and glass fibers. Silk and sheer fabrics weaken much faster than heavier, tightly woven fabrics. Protect these fabrics by installing blinds or sun blockers on the window as well. Some drapes have a special backing that insulates and reflects light well, but it may be difficult to clean.

First, make a sound investment. Second, clean your drapes at least once a year, vacuum thoroughly between cleanings. If possible, rotate your drapes to vary light exposure. Sun can damage drapes, weakening textile fibers and fading colors. Be careful about rain or condensation on your drapes. Once the wet area dries, brown or yellow stains, caused by sizing finishes, may appear.

Behind the Scenes at Your Drycleaner

drycleaning process

When items arrive we wave our magic wand and they are ready-to-wear fresh in no time. End of story.

Well, that’s how we hope it looks. Truth is, your wardrobe gets full-service treatment.

Tagging and Stains
In reality, after check-in, we tag your items so the cleaning team can keep track of them through the upcoming process. Then we check for stains. If we find any tough stains, we’ll remove them based on their chemistry. Stain removal is part art and part science. Some stains are tougher than others but our team can handle 99.9% of them.

Cleaning
Next, we place your garments into the cleaning machine. It’s like a home washer since the clothes are placed in a metal cylinder. During cleaning, your items bathe in an EPA-approved fluid to dissolve grease and oily stains. Centrifugal force removes most of the fluid and soils just like in a home washer, the rest comes out in drying. Your clothes come out smelling fresh but we prefer to take the wrinkles out before calling them “Ready to Wear Fresh®.”

Finishing
We press pants one leg at a time blast wrinkles with 300-degree steam while a hot flat iron flattens and creases each leg. We get wrinkles out of the waist and seat with “puff irons” or a specialized “pants topper” device. If they pass our quality inspection, they’re ready for you fresh.

Shirts are a little more involved. We press sleeves on a machine called a “sleever.” We do collars and cuffs together on another specialized machine. Full-body machines press the front and back perfectly flat. Then, we place the shirt on a form to give the collar it’s natural round shape.

Inspection & Assembly
Following the finishing process, we inspect for missing, loose, or broken buttons. We also give the items a detailed final quality exam to make sure they are truly Ready to Wear Fresh®.

Items identified as less-than-100% Ready to Wear Fresh® go back for correction. The real magic of professional cleaning is how you feel 100% confident because you know you look your best. You know because you trusted the experts, us. Our only job is making you look your best.

Here are some of the things we look for in our quality inspection:

Pants
No wrinkles at the waistband
No pocket impressions
No gaping pockets
No crotch wrinkles
No uneven crease heights
No double creases
No uneven cuffs

Blouses
Sleeves and collars rolled (creased
if requested)
No creases in gathered section
Front edges are even
Darts and tucks are pressed along stitch direction

Suit Coats
Sleeve cuffs are firm and straight,
lining not showing
Collar properly formed
Lapel is rolled to top button and top buttonhole
No pocket impressions
No pocket flap impressions
Vents correctly finished
No lining hanging below coat

Pleated Dress

Sleeves and collars rolled
No creases in gathered section
Front edges of bodice are even
Darts and tucks are pressed along stitch direction
Hemline is even
Pleats are well defined, edges straight

We hope you enjoyed the tour!

Caring for Household Items

Home-Morocco-bedding

Open the windows and let the sun shine in! But be careful where those rays go because they could fade some parts of your home envirHome-Morocco-beddingonmHome-Morocco-beddingent.

Sometimes we forget about household items that blend into our homes so much they become a part of the scenery. These items collect dust and dirt and can become damaged, faded or discolored in their inactivity. Since we see them everyday, gradual changes come about without our noticing.

Guest room items are often overlooked, as many comforters on guest room beds sit in direct sunlight and are rarely noticed. Draperies, upholstery, rugs, and pillows all fade into the background. While these items brighten our homes, they are collecting dust, grime, food crumbs, and stains.

Trained fabric care professionals like us have the knowledge and equipment to care for your household items so you can enjoy them even longer. Here are some tips you can use to get the most out your household items.

Comforters
Comforters rarely become soiled as they rest atop other blankets and bed coverings. Sooner or later they will acquire a stain or collect enough dust to warrant cleaning. Comforters left in direct sunlight can fade in some areas. It is best to keep comforters and heirloom quilts out of direct light to prevent damage.

We can process your comforters and quilts to get the dust and grime out of them safely. Many comforters will not fit into home washers but fit easily into oversized professional cleaning machines.

Handmade quilts are especially susceptible to dye bleeding since the fabric components of the quilt vary. We test quilts to ensure no bleeding will ruin it.

Blankets
Blankets are available in many fibers and construction types, including wool, cotton, acrylic, polyester, and polyurethane. A blanket’s construction plays a direct role in its thermal qualities and should be cleaned to protect its ability to contain heat. Our team is skilled in the methods of cleaning blankets to preserve their heat-retaining qualities and appearance.

Decorative Pillows
Upholstery fabHome-Morocco-beddingrics used for furniture are usually used to cover decorative pillows. Occasionally, pillows are also made to match draperies or other home furnishings. Most of these items are not supposed to be cleaned unless the manufacturer recommends a procedure. Do not remove the stuffing from cushions for cleaning.

Drapes
Drapes can hang for years between cleanings. Often, exposure to sunlight and changing temperatures lead to fabric damage in drapes. In time, soil and dust in the room, as well as outside atmospheric dirt and gasses from industry, automobiles, and construction, may soil the drapes. Many of these soils can be removed through careful cleaning practices.

Water stains appear when moisture from condensation on the window, humidity or spilled liquids causes the soils to disperse, leaving a stained area.

Moisture may also be responsible for displacing drapery sizing. After the moisture evaporates, a ring or streak may be noticeable because soils can be removed. You may notice discoloration due to light combining with oxygen, which tears down certain chemicals in fibers.

We often hear about white drapes that have yellowed noticeably in certain areas. Most fibers have a natural tendency to slowly oxidize and yellow from aging and atmospheric exposure. Any drapery material used to cover a window is exposed to both direct and indirect light.

The best way to prevent excessive damage or fading is to rotate a few different sets of drapes, blankets or comforters periodically, or with the seasons. Keep furniture out of direct light to minimize fading. This will not only brighten the look of your home, but it will ensure that you get the most mileage out of your household items.

Colors Sometimes Run

color run

Garments lose color for various reasons. Contact with bleach or household cleaning products can disturb dyes, resulting in white discolorations. Same with hair preparations and other moisture solutions or perfumes and other substances containing alcohol.

“Fugitive dyes” are not colorfast to cleaning solutions and are the biggest manufacturer-related problem reported by the International Textile Analysis Laboratory (ITAL), an independent organization based in Laurel, Maryland. In these cases, the dyes dissolve when an item is cleaned in drycleaning solvent or water despite the instructions on the care label. The color loss may occur throughout the garment or be localized in certain areas. For instance, the pink flowers on a pink-and-white print may be solvent-soluble but may come out completely white after cleaning.

Some dyes are more susceptible to loss of color than others. Pink, red, blue, and black are usually the most troublesome colors and can be expected to show some type of variance regardless of the precautions taken.

How can you minimize color loss?

Follow the care label. Instructions that specify that the garment be washed with similar colors, separately, or in cold water may indicate unstable dyes.

If you suspect a dye, such as red or pink, will bleed during washing, wash with similar colors in cold water on short cycle to minimize any color loss and dye transfer to other articles in the load.

Clean all the pieces of a matching outfit at the same time to avoid any color discrepancies.

Store garments away from natural and artificial light. A cool, dark closet is a good location for storage.

Treat all spills immediately. Blot – do not rub. Some spills like soft drinks may dry invisibly but can show up later.

Use care when applying perfumes, hair spray, and other alcohol-containing substances, bleach, and skin preparations.

Have garments cleaned as soon as possible after wear to prevent color loss from perspiration.

Point out any spills and examine the garment before cleaning for any type of color loss.

If you purchase a drycleanable garment that you suspect may have color problems (multiple colors or red/white combinations), ask us to test it for colorfastness. If tests show the colors may bleed, you may opt to return it to your retailer for a refund.

Remember that some garments may have color problems in spite of the care label and testing.