CARING FOR DIFFERENT TYPES OF COATS
Shearling Coats: Shearling is a soft lamb's leather. This suede-like material should be professionally cared for because it is so delicate. If you do soil a shearling jacket, do not let the stain set. Take it immediately to be cleaned or it may never come out. Keep shearling leather away from heat and sunlight. Do not store it in a plastic bag. Use a breathable garment bag or you risk losing the softness of the leather. Have it cleaned before you store it for the summer so that chemicals and oils do not damage the leather while it is in storage.
Wool Coats: Wool can generally be brushed with a natural bristle brush to remove any moth larvae, moth eggs, or dust. Wool coats should be spot cleaned and should not be subjected to full cleanings very often. Take wool coats to a dry cleaner about once a year and then store in a breathable garment bag. Do not store it in the plastic bag from the cleaner or lingering dry cleaning chemicals can damage the coat. Plastic also traps in moisture and encourages mold and mildew to grow. Use a cedar coat hanger to protect your wool coats from pests.
Fur Coats: Fur coats require special care because humidity can cause the fur to fall out. Valuable furs should always be kept at a professional fur storage facility. If you choose to store your fur coats at home, you will need to take special precautions. Furs require a low temperature and low humidity environment. Even air conditioning can cause humidity to damage fur coats. You may have to create a special, cedar closet in a garage or basement where the temperature is always below seventy degrees. You will need to use a dehumidifier in the closet to keep humidity out. Cedar helps to absorb moisture as well. Make sure that your cedar closet has ventilation as well.
Synthetic Leather and Suede Coats: These types of fabrics should be cleaned according to the manufacturer's directions. This is because synthetics could contain different types of rayon. Some rayons can shrink drastically or lose their dye if not cared for properly. If your synthetic coat says to dry clean only, you should take it to a professional to have it cleaned. If not, you can generally find products formulated specifically for synthetics that will help you to remove dirt and grime while retaining the softness of the material.
Hang all of your coats on a good coat hanger or wood hanger with curved shoulders. This will help you to keep your coats in good shape while they are in storage. Hangers that are designed to hold heavy weights are best. The clothes hangers that you choose can help you to keep your coats looking like new for years.