At Origami Doll, we care about making clothes that last, and can be worn over and over again. Our clothes are inspired by classical styles from the 40s-60s and are made from high quality cotton or polyester to allow the longest life possible for these timeless designs.
Dressing well shouldn’t be at the cost of the planet, which is why we’ve collected some quick clothing care tips for you to increase the lifespan of your clothes and care for the environment. If you can swear by any of these, or think we’ve missed some really good tips be sure to let us know! We love hearing from all of you.
None of the tips in this article are sponsored, it’s just advice we’ve found while researching eco-friendly garment care that we want to share.
Wash less, and wash cold
There seems to be a real conflict around how often you should wash your clothes, and it seems that no hard and fast rule works for everyone: even something as universal as sweat is all so based on personal preferences it’s impossible to keep track of! It is true though, that the more you wash your clothes, the more damage can be done to your garments. Particularly with how vibrant our prints are, the more often you wash them, the quicker these prints will fade. Of course, this is normal, but to hold off this fading as long as possible, turn your dresses inside out and put them on a gentle cold wash. Avoid soaking the clothes, as this can also impact the strength of the fabric (particularly for any viscose or rayon you have) as well as the fit and colour. The aim of this step is giving your dresses the most vibrant and long life possible!
- Aim to buy gentle, eco friendly detergents whenever possible. Just because they can go down the drain doesn’t mean they
Avoid the dryer
This step is a tricky one, especially since we live and work in Sydney, which this week along has rained Every. Single. Day. But not only do dryers cost a pretty penny to run, they’re also bad for your clothes. I’m sure everyone has an “I put this in a dryer and it will never fit me again” story, but did you know that dryers also reduce the lifespan of your clothes? The high heat and tumbling motion puts strain on the strength of fabrics, which causes garments to lose their shape and wear out quicker. Always check the care instructions on your garments to check if they’re dryer safe and try to put your dryer on a lower heat setting whenever possible. Alternately, if the skies are clear, hang your washing out so it can enjoy the beautiful weather.
- If washing our polyester dresses, skirts, or trousers, try using a Cora Ball or other microplastic collector to reduce the amount of microplastics draining into waterways. Studies have found that the Cora Ball specifically captures around 26% of microplastics shed from washing your clothes. Which when you think about the amount of microplastics being released every time polyester is washed, is no small feat. If you’re looking into higher numbers, look into getting a filter system installed for your machine.
- Use bleach and bleach-based solutions only when absolutely needed, as bleach can not only impact waterways, but anything left in your washing machine might go on to bleach your future garments. (Trust me on this one, after using plenty of laundromats while at uni, my dresses would attract all the bleach left over in those machines, even after a rinse cycle.)
Freeze your garments!
Now this one is a little unorthodox, and we can’t fault you for being unconvinced. This is a trick used by vintage collectors who want to wear their garments but are cautious of putting delicate vintage pieces through our rough-and-tumble machine washing process. If there are no marks in the clothing that need removing and really you just need to get rid of the smell, consider putting it in a large zip-lock bag and freezing it overnight. The theory goes that because it is bacteria that produces this smell, putting these garments in a cold enough environment will kill the bacteria, giving your clothes a refresh without using any water. (link)
We’ll be honest: none of the Origami Doll team has quite had the courage to give this one a try yet, but if we can consider the internet a reliable source on this, the results are… varied. If you or anyone you know has given this trick a try, we’d love to hear from you! We’re always on the look out for ways to reduce our environmental footprint while still always looking stylish.
Until next time,
Calina and the Origami Doll team.
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