LOOK #3: LACE & LEATHER
Another strong year for sheers saw lots of gauzy peek-a-boo fabrics lend an airy dimension to all kinds of garments. Designers used lace wherever and whenever they could, under and over silks, woolens and leathers—often bonding the most delicate materials to the toughest.
“My main concern is the integrity of the bonding,” says Chris Allsbrooks, director of training operations for ZIPS Dry Cleaners. “That bond can degrade as it’s cleaned, and cause changes in the original design.” Laces and sheers are easily damaged in cleaning, she adds. “Put them in a net bag to prevent them from being snagged or abraded by other garments.”
In spotting, “know when to say when,” and extract gently, says Joseph Hallak Jr., vice president of Hallak Cleaners. “Program the machine to control tumbling to once every 30 or 60 seconds. We drain without tumbling, then use a light extraction and a gentle dry cycle.”
If the garment features leather, send it out to a professional leather cleaner, advises Alan Spielvogel, garment analyst with the National Cleaners Association (NCA). “I see a lot of drycleaners try to clean leathers and suedes in hydrocarbon machines. Unless they have the capacity to finish them, they shouldn’t be messing around.”