How To Care For Your Smitten Clothing

With the exception of our Cable Knits, Chunky Knits, Envirowoolly items, Possum fibre items, Classic Jumpers (all hand wash only) and Cashmere fibre items (dry clean only), Smitten clothing is machine washable with a gentle approach. So many other makes of knitwear are hand wash only; we hope this makes your life easier! Please however ensure you use an appropriate spin speed and temperature setting.

More info: About Our Fabrics

Try it on! Make sure to try everything you purchase – even if you have purchased the same style in the past, or multiples of the same. We do our best to keep you updated but sometimes styles can change, fabrics can vary or elements can be slightly different from piece to piece.

No need to wash before wear as Smitten is pressed and quality checked before dispatch, Found some fabric creases from the journey? Simply hang and allow to fall out.

The more care you give your merino wool clothing, the longer it will last.

As merino wool requires less washing than other fibres, we recommend the ‘every other time’ rule when it comes to washing. Merino wool is anti-microbial and doesn’t hold odour meaning you can wear it again, again … and again before it requires a wash! Don’t have time? Simply hang your Smitten in the bathroom while you shower – steam rejuvenates the fabric.

With the exception of our Cable Knits, Chunky Knits, Envirowoolly items, Possum fibre items, Classic Jumpers (all hand wash only) and Cashmere fibre items (dry clean only), Smitten clothing is machine washable with a gentle approach.

Make sure to use a wool/delicates cycle with a water temperature no higher than 40 degrees (Celsius). This ensures a gentler spin speed of 600 rpm or less.

Fast spinning can stretch your fabric and temperatures over 40C can matt and shrink the wool.

Pair your wool cycle with an approved wool garment powder or liquid (look for the Woolmark symbol or a PH neutral detergent).

We recommend washing like colours together and avoiding washing your Smitten with sharp objects (like zips or buttons where the teeth may catch on the fine merino fibres – causing holes!)

No – our merino wool is a stable product, therefore it should not shrink, when washed under suitable conditions (see above).

Wool specific detergents are available at all supermarkets and many sell Woolmark approved own brands.

Pair your wool cycle with an approved wool garment powder or liquid (look for the Woolmark symbol or a PH neutral detergent).

Remember – Never use biological detergents or stain removers on wool fibres because the enzymes contained in these products will literally digest the fabric.
Also, non biological products which contain bleach will lead to progressive fading and may weaken the fabric, leading to holes in the garment … scary but true.

A regretful customer writes “I just popped my favourite Smitten in with a quick 30 minute load without thinking. My previously perfect dress now has at least seven holes in it. I can’t believe that stuff is so powerful”.

Never use bleach, whiteners/brighteners or fabric softener!

Products to avoid are often advertised as ‘tough on stains’, ‘heavy duty’ or show as ‘bio’ detergents containing enzymes.

NEVER put your Smitten in the dryer.

Superfine merino wool dries very quickly, often less than 30 minutes making it perfect for travel. Excess water can be removed by gently rolling in a towel (a top tip for camping!).

Dry out of direct sunlight, fold or hang garment and warm iron if preferred.

Yes you can – using a cool/warm iron is fine but often creases disappear when drying or fall out with body heat.

During initial wear all knitwear can shed some of its fibres and create small balls on the surface of the fabric. This is a normal and a temporary issue and not a sign of poor quality yarns. The small balls that may appear are easily removed with a safety razor, pilling comb or fabric shaver. In time they will naturally drop off during washing and wear.

We recommend storing your Smitten clothing in a sealed bag or container.

Our Garment Bags are a great deterrent for pests like moths as they add a barrier to prevent the fibres from damage. These bags are also ideal for travel as they keep your garments neat, tidy and separated for easy access.

See them here: Garment Bags

Before storing garments, freeze overnight (min 12hrs). This helps to prevent moths/silverfish damage – read more below [link to Help, small holes have developed in my clothing!]. Garments come out ready to wear, just a little cold to start!
You can also pop your garments in the sun but ensure to do this in a sealed bag.
When stored (whether in a wardrobe, drawers or when storing for the season), add a few Herbal Clothing Protectors to drawers, wardrobes or storage boxes Mists are a popular new option and add a refreshing scent to the room. Don’t apply directly to fabric – simply scatter or mist nearby.
It is best to store garments quickly – do not leave lying around for long periods of time (not even in the laundry basket!).

Things don’t always go to plan and accidents happen! It is best to treat stains as soon as possible and it is important to ensure they are fully removed before ironing or washing as this can make a stain permanent.

The most common items to remove -

Alcoholic Drinks
Dab gently with an absorbent, lint-free cloth to remove as much liquid as possible. Sponge sparingly with warm water and rubbing alcohol (equal parts). Rinse well and wash as per usual.

Black coffee
Rinse under cold running water to dilute the coffee 
If the stain has dried, make a mix of 1/2tsp baking soda with 1cup tepid water. Soak a lint-free cloth in the solution and lightly dab the stained area. Press gently with an absorbent cloth.
If stain persists, apply a solution of 3 parts rubbing alcohol, plus 1 part cold water. Press gently with an absorbent cloth. Rinse well and wash as per usual.

Lipstick and make up
Gently dab from the edge of the stain with a cloth soaked with spot-cleaning spray. Press gently with an absorbent cloth or towel to soak up excess solvent then allow to dry. Wash as per usual.

Remove excess blood immediately with absorbent towel. Gently dab the area using undiluted white vinegar followed by cold water. Wash as per usual.

Looking for something else? The Woolmark website has more great info on Stain Removal

Biological washing products (mentioned under care, above) which contain bleach may weaken the fabric, leading to holes in the garment. These holes will show after washing, often quite noticeable straight away.

The most common reason is moths and silverfish. These are less obvious and harder to detect.

Holes appear as small snips in the fibres and often do not appear until a garment is worn or washed and the fibres are stretched/moved.

These awful critters lay their eggs in the fibres of the garment and when the larvae hatch they eat through the high protein fibre as a first meal.
Moths and silverfish do not need to be present in your home and often pick just one piece of clothing to damage, even if all clothing has been stored together, in very short amounts of time.

They are not a sign of an unclean home as they are purely opportunistic (often appearing if you have been travelling – hotel rooms etc – or if natural fibre garments have been stored).

Superfine merino wool is often the first target due to the high protein content.

See ‘How do I store my Smitten’ (above) for more info.

smitten-craft-patch-repair-kitsGeneral wear and tear can appear in many ways. This can be small holes, fraying edges, marks/stains or seam wear. This is not a sign of poor quality and is often easily mended.

Our top recommendation is always a fabulous method called ‘invisible mending’. This method closes the hole with a fine stitch to ensure it is not easily seen from the inside or outside. It also helps to reinforce the surrounding threads to ensure the hole does not spread or fray (if ripped). Invisible mending is ideal for small holes e.g those causes by moths or small snags.

Any seamstress should be able to do this for you. Specialist dry cleaners or clothing alteration specialists often provide these services at a very affordable price.

Repair patching works wonders on larger holes including split seams or tree snags (a bushwalkers trademark!). A piece of fabric can be sewn into the back of the garment to provide coverage over these larger holes. This can be done in the same fabric/colour or a contrast for something fun!
Get creative with our Smitten Craft, Patch & Repair Kits. Thoughtfully curated, each bundle contains 10x strips of merino wool fabric off-cuts approx. 1cm x 20-50cm of varying fabric colours, compositions and weights. These kits are ideal for small repairs in your Smitten – choose a bundle to match what you need or choose a contrasting feature.

Smitten Craft, Patch & Repair Kits.

Applique is also a very popular option at present and provides a fun way to add some personalisation to your garment! Add beads, stones, special stitches or patterns to close and cover holes. Each piece is unique and we love to see the range of creativity emerging in the Smitten community.