How can I make my suits last longer?
The life span of a suit depends on various factors:
First: The number of suits you own
This factor is by far the one that has the biggest affect on durability. If we assume you have to wear a suit 5 days a week, if you only own three suits, two of them are going to be worn twice every week, assuming you're rotating them correctly.
Ideally anyone who wears a suit 5 times a week should have at least seven suits.
Anyone who flies to hot countries extensively on business will need more than 2 lightweight suits.
One way of improving durability without buying so many suits is to buy an extra pair of trousers. Typically the trousers will tend to wear out first as the jacket is often removed at work. If the trousers are rotated then the suit will take far longer to wear out.
Second: Where and how often you have them cleaned
Suits do not benefit from being cleaned and it does shorten their life. As a result they should be cleaned as seldom as possible.
Dry cleaning can seriously affect the life of a suit; therefore, if the suit is to last, it must be done properly. General dry cleaners will clean your suit with other garments that could include riveted jeans, studded leather jackets etc. that can damage the fabric. The suit may also suffer if pressed at too high a temperature.
To ensure your suit is dry cleaned carefully we would recommend specialist dry cleaners. As the garments are sponged and spot-cleaned individually rather than thrown into a drum.
Third: How you look after your suits
Do not put heavy items in the jacket pockets, as it will pull the suit out of shape. Why not put your Mobile, wallet, cheque-book etc. in your brief case or trouser pockets?
If you ride a motorbike or push bike this will also reduce the life of your suit.
How long should a good suit last?
This is an impossible question to answer as it depends on how many suits you own and how well you look after them but as a general guide, anything between 3 and 8 years.
What makes a suit look worn out?
Take a close look at the suits in your wardrobe. Do they still have a shape or do they hang like an old sack? Are they starting to go shiny or threadbare in certain places?
These are the usual signs that a suit is worn out.
If any of your suits look like this they are probably more comfortable than career enhancing.
It is important to examine how suits wear out in order to avoid it happening.
When a soft fabric like wool is constantly rubbed against a hard surface, the fibres break and this shows visibly. Eventually a suit will just look too worn out to wear.
Consequently it's a good idea to look at the kind of seat you're sitting on. Many office chairs have hard polyester meshing upholstery, which isn't all that good for wool.
Remember that many people spend most of their day sitting on the same chair putting the trousers of a suit under extreme pressure.
If you take a cigarette break three times a day and you always rest on the wall outside your office, the seat of your trousers will wear through quickly. If this is the case it is advisable to order an extra pair of trousers to extend the life of your suit.
Try to avoid loading up the jacket of your bespoke suit with too much clutter. This pulls it out of shape and spoils the silhouette.
Why do suits go shiny?
That horrible shiny look that usually appears on the seat of a pair of trousers is caused by the dry cleaners pressing the garment too hot and drying out the natural oils inherent in wool. A bad dry cleaner can also turn your suit shiny by mixing the chemicals badly.
How should I care for my suit when travelling?
When driving, always remove your jacket and hang it on the clothes peg above the rear passenger door, or lay it flat on the back seat of the car. Otherwise seat belts can wear a shiny band across the top of your suit.
When travelling overseas on a business trip a suit should be carried in its suit carrier and stored in the overhead compartment.
If you are going on a business trip that requires you to arrive wearing your suit, wear casual clothing on the plane and then change into your suit whilst waiting for your luggage. The suit will be far less creased than if you'd worn it on the plane.
Is it acceptable to wear the same suit twice in one week?
There is nothing wrong with a suit being worn twice in the same week, especially if those days are a few days apart, but obviously the more often a suit is worn, the shorter its life span. Try to avoid wearing a suit two days in a row. If you own at least 5 suits and you rotate them properly, they should last a decent length of time.
Before storing my winter or summer clothes that I can't clean at home, should I have them dry-cleaned?
You will want to have any article of clothing cleaned before you store it so that stains and odors don’t become permanent. And this is especially important when we are talking about wool since food stains can attract moths. But if you are only battling wrinkles, try steaming before spending money on dry-cleaning or professional pressing.
Is it safe to take my nice cotton dress shirts to be professionally laundered?
When it comes to nice cotton shirts prefer to launder. However, do take black and dark shirts to the dry-cleaners which preserves the dark color better. But do not launder any of the shirts because they use chemical detergents, really hot water, high heat in the pressing process. The result is a loss of color, shrinkage and accelerated wear and tear.
Wash shirts in cold water and drip dry them. Also press them with less heat and steam than they would if professionally laundered
How To Maintain Fabric With Stains?
Soak a piece of cotton in alcohol. Rub gently.
Fresh blood stains can be removed with cold water. For dried in blood stains use cold water but add a drop or two of hydrogen peroxide (use a 3% solution). Draw the area firmly and pour the solution over the stain. This will prevent the stain from spreading when reacting with the solution.
Rub gently with glycerin. Rinse in lukewarm water.
Do not use soap! Try leaving a few drops of glycerin to soak in. Then wash in lukewarm water. For old stains try adding a thimble spoon of egg yoke to the glycerin.
On wool rub with a piece of cotton soaked in hydrogen peroxide (24% solution). Leave the soaked stained area exposed to direct sunlight for a few hours until scorch mark disappears. Repeat a few times if necessary. Do not overuse peroxide!
Use some very fine salt and rub gently.
Apply a little lemon juice to the stain. Not a good idea on silks etc.
Rub the stain with the following solution; 2 tablespoons of alcohol, 3 tablespoons of hot water and 1 tablespoon of ammonia.
Iron Overpressing Marks:
Place a well dampened cloth under the marked area. Place a white handkerchief on the outside. Leave for a day, then iron with a freshly dampened cloth. The iron should be warm and not hot!
Mix a teaspoon of sugar with water and rub over the stain. Remove the solution with a damp cloth.
Soak a cloth in pure alcohol or ether and apply until clean.
Apply turpentine carefully and then rub gently with a cloth soaked in soapy water.
Use turpentine on the stain and rub with a cloth.
On a fresh stain use some salt and then rub very gently with lemon juice and soap. You may have to repeat the procedure a few times. Rinse thoroughly. This preserves the integrity of shirts for much longer which saves money not only in laundering costs but in replacing worn shirts.