Knitwear can be made of a variety of different fibers, ranging from wool to cotton and acrylic. While different materials have different requirements, there is one aspect all knitwear has in common: the delicate knitted surface. To preserve the quality of your knit pieces, always wash them by hand using cold water and eco-friendly laundry detergent (use a wool laundry detergent for woolen items). It’s important to avoid harsh detergents and bleach, as those can damage your garments. Try not to rub and scrub your knitwear, as it can cause surface wear; instead, let the garment soak for up to 10 minutes before thoroughly rinsing it with clean water.
Note: Wool has temperature-regulating and self-cleaning properties, is breathable, and doesn’t absorb odors, so it will often be enough to simply air out your woolen knit pieces by gently shaking them or laying them flat on a chair overnight. Read more about how to care for woolen clothes in our Wool Care Guide.
To maintain their quality and shape, never wring or hang-dry knitwear pieces, as it can stretch the fabric. Instead, roll the garment in a clean and dry towel before gently pressing it. Once the towel has absorbed the excess water, carefully ease your knit into shape and lay it flat on top of a dry towel or a drying rack.
What to do about Pilling and Pulled Yarn
Although it can’t be fully avoided, you can reduce pilling (small pieces of fluff) by reducing friction where possible, for example by avoiding bags and belts that rub against your knit pieces. You can also remove pilling by gently plucking it off by hand. Avoid de-pilling devices such as ‘wool-razors’ as they can damage the fibers.
If you snag your garments on jewelry or other objects and pull a thread loose, you can easily pull the yarn to the back of the garment using a crochet hook before securing it in a knot. Avoid pulling it too hard, and don’t cut the thread, since this will create a hole.