Tips and Tricks for Storing Purses in Your Wardrobe We live in an age where women fantasize over owning a Fendi Baguette or hanker after a Hermes Birkin bag, and are willing to join a waiting list of five years for the privilege. Such is our obsession with handbags that purses have replaced shoes are objects of lust. Whether it be a tote, shoulder bag or clutch purse, many women today are obsessed with arm candy.
However, if you are the kind of person who throws everything in the bottom of your closet, including your precious Prada purse, then think again. Storing your bags and purses carefully will prolong the lives of these necessary accessories, keeping them in pristine condition and making your money go further.
Storing your Handbag
The handbags you use regularly need to be easily accessible, so store them on the top or side shelf in your closet, standing upright in a line. You can organize them by size, type or color. Place your bags on wardrobe shelves rather than on the floor, unless you are storing them in boxes.
One of the best ways to store handbags, just as with storing shoes, is to put them in plastic boxes or wicker storage baskets which allow air to circulate in the same way as a shoe box. This protects them from the elements, stops them being damaged, lets them breathe, and makes them easy to store/stack. Make sure the boxes are big enough so that you are not folding over the bag handles.
Any purses you don't use so often can be wrapped in cotton pillow cases or cloth storage bags. Do not put them in enclosed plastic dry cleaning bags, or boxes without air flow - they must be able to breathe.
If storing bags together make sure you cover any brass or mental chains, rings, studs and so on to stop them marking other bags. You can do this with a piece of tissue or cloth. Tuck chain handles inside the bag. This prevents the chain from scratching or marking the outside leather. Undo metal fastenings and buckles on straps so that they do not leave an impression.
To keep bags in proper shape you can stuff them with tissue paper or any alternative acid-free filling, but do not use old newspapers. Bubble wrap is better than tissue paper for padding out or wrapping bags as it doesn't attract moths in the same way as tissue paper.
Make space by clearing out your closet and deciding which pieces you are never likely to use again.
Caring for your Purse
If you are going to store purses for a long time then give them a thorough clean. "Empty every nook and cranny, vacuuming out the debris at the bottom," advises Cerentha Harris in her article "How to Sort Out Your Wardrobe", in Marie Claire,'s August 2007 Australian edition. Wipe the outside of your bag all over with a barely damp cloth and make sure that the bag is completely dry before you store it.
For leather bags, you can use commercial leather cleaner to give them a thorough cleanse. In her October 2006 eBay guide, "Storing and Caring for your handbag ? plus tips and tricks", eBay member 403 Halsey says "I have found a product at Walmart in the automotive section for leather seats. It actually smells like leather and rubs on like lotion. As stated on the bottle - test an area first to make sure it is compatible with your bag. This product cleans, conditions, and protects it against UV and heat."
Halsey also suggests that suede bags can be cleaned with a suede and nubuck cleaner available from shoe retailers or shoe sections of large stores. However, the article "How to care for your handbag," on the online shopping site SheFinds, advises against using any kind of treatment and just using a suede brush to reduce dust and grime.
If using an air freshener to freshen the inside of your bags, then make sure to choose one that has a natural smell such as vanilla rather then an artificial floral fragrance. Also you don't want the fragrance to be too strong, so consider keeping it in its wrapping and make small slits for the fragrance to escape.
A tip from Harris in her Marie Claire article is to place a saucer of baking powder on the floor at the back of your closet to absorb odors, should your storage space smell musty.
With the many kinds of caps that are available today, here are some tips for storing those that are not currently in use.
Hats are an important part of our apparel wear for several reasons. They keep us warm in winter, fend off rain in summer, and add a dashing accent to an attractive outfit. With so many kinds of hats to choose from throughout the year, it is inevitable that some of them will have to be stored at various times. Here is a brief index of suggestions for keeping your head gear in good condition. 1. Winter head warmers. Winter is the season when many of us are most likely to keep our heads covered when we are outdoors. From earmuffs to fur headpieces, a multitude of styles, sizes, textures, and colors provide numerous choices. Since winter lasts approximately three months, you will need to put away those warm hats during the rest of the year. A felt fedora should be kept in a hatbox if possible to help retain its shape. But a fur piece might fare better in cold storage with a professional company. Wool toboggans or pull-on hats for kids can be washed and kept in a chest of drawers for the next year, along with matching mittens. 2. Spring caps. Lightweight and whimsical, many types of spring caps are versatile and fun without serious form or design. These can be kept in an airtight container to keep the moths away. Easter bonnets may be more substantial and require additional care, such as a dry cleaning at the end of the season before placing them in a hatbox or sealed container to preserve them for next year. 3. Summer bonnets. A cotton sun bonnet can be washed and placed in a dresser drawer until it is needed again later. Straw hats, however, need to be carefully brushed or wiped and stored in a large box to prevent them from losing their shape. You may need to get special cleaning solution if they begin to look dingy or dark. 4. Autumn hoods. Windbreakers, "hoodies," or other jackets with attached or detachable hoods usually are made of washable synthetic or natural fibers, so throw them in the washer before tucking them into a plastic storage bag for the winter. Wool beak caps may hold their shape without bending if they are placed in a hatbox or a firm container that won't bend or leak during the winter. 5. Random accents. Silk scarves need to be hand washed and then folded and placed in a special box for their protection, as they snag easily. Cotton kerchiefs can be washed and stored in a drawer or on a closet shelf. Stylish pill box hats, making a potential comeback after a long hiatus, will likely need to be carefully stored in a hatbox on a closet shelf. Wool head wraps or cotton turbans can be hand washed and placed in a separate box for safekeeping.
You may want to place matching accessories, such as gloves or scarf, with their hats if they fit and won't mash the hat itself. If in doubt about how to care for a hat or other piece of clothing, contact the manufacturer through the store where you purchased it. The only long-term problem with hats is that they typically go out of style before wearing out; but the good news is if you wait long enough, they will be back in style before you know it!
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