Decoding Clothing Labels:
It will either say "Dry Clean" or "Dry Clean Only." For the most part, "Dry Clean" can be hand-washed, and "Dry Clean Only" should be dry-cleaned.
What Items Should Always Be Dry Cleaned?
What HAS to be dry-cleaned? Leather, suede, velvet, embellished fabrics (beads, sequins etc), pleated or structured garments, such as an evening dress or a man's suit.
The items that I like to save money on are: sweaters (particularly cashmere), silk tops and dresses, and rayon tops.
What Do We Need To Hand-Wash Our Dry Cleaning?
You will need:
• 2 few large clean towels. • Shampoo and Conditioner. • A drying rack. • An iron or steam ironer (optional, but VERY good to have). Fill a sink full of tepid water, and add a few drops of gentle shampoo, and about ¼ tsp of conditioner (only use conditioner for cashmere, not other fabrics). Wash gently, and then rinse 3 times in COLD water. It helps to have 2 people, because you are going roll the garment in your towel and twist the towel, wringing out all excess moisture. Gently squeeze out excess water, and then lay it in a twist along the length of a large towel. Next we lay it out flat on the mesh part of the drying rack. Once The Garment is Dry, How Do We Safely Give it That Dry Clean Press?
When it's dry, you can gently iron it inside out on the "wool" setting, or you can steam iron it. If you are hand washing silk, it's a huge plus to have a steam-ironing machine for a professional-looking finish. You can pick one up from Target for under sixty bucks it will have paid for itself inside of 6 months.
Always have a de-pilling gadget to hand, because a quick de-pill can make your sweater look brand new. What About Those Under Arms?
If you've worn something once and it's been a sweaty day, you are left with that awful underarm odor, but don't want to have to dry clean the whole garment, right?
So, all you need to do is fill a spray bottle with VODKA!!! Spritz the underarm area a few times and let it air dry – the whiffy smell will disappear. This is great for travel.
You can get more great eco-friendly tips from Sophie Uliano on Facebook at