Why It’s Important To Pick The Right Dry Cleaner When It Comes To Your Luxury Wardrobe Items 

“Pssst, go for Gucci!…”

“Yoo hoo, it’s YSL!…”

“Over here for some Hermes!”

Anyone who has walked by a high-end retailer or specialty department store display can almost certainly relate to the siren calls of these designers. Perhaps that’s why luxury apparel is the top performing sector amongst the world’s 100 biggest brands, according to global brand consultancy Interbrand. Louis Vuitton and Chanel lead in brand value, while Gucci is cited among the fastest growing. Additional labels that fall into the report’s top fashion brands include Hermes, Dior, Burberry, and Prada.

The look, feel and workmanship of designer items are undeniable, setting trends, while retaining a timelessness. This level of quality and the way you feel wearing it; however, comes with a steep price tag. Such an investment warrants equally exclusive care, making dry cleaner selection an important choice. Not all cleaners have expertise in the proper care of luxury pieces. In fact, very few of them do. So, how can you tell the difference?

“Ask questions,” says Sudsies President Jason Loeb. “Do they know what a hand rolled hem on a scarf is and do they know how protect it when pressing? Do they know how to hand clean? Do they have speciality equipment that accommodates high-end clothing? Do they offer wet cleaning capabilities… all of these options are necessary to be able to provide care that’s best for the individual garment.”

Image depicts a row of silk scarves

In depth knowledge of fabrics, garment construction, and workmanship, coupled with the proper tools and techniques to care for an item is necessary to avoid exposing the article to complete submersion in solvent and harsh mechanical action. Gentler processes like hygienic steam disinfection, followed by hand-emphasis cleaning on key areas (ie underarms, collars, etc.) and treating stains relieves the stress imposed by commonplace cleaning practices. These time consuming, yet minimal contact process avoid wear on the delicate fabrics, hand stitching, and embellishments associated with many luxury wears.

Loeb goes onto provide some tips on how to best help your luxury cleaner before bringing an item for care.

“When purchasing a designer or custom made piece, ask for a swatch of the material. We can use this to help us determine how exactly the fabric will react to select cleaning formulations and best make any adjustments if needed. This swatch can also come in handy if you ever experience any rips or tears. Our tailoring team can make a much more seamless repair if they have the original material. The same theory applies to securing any extra beading, thread, buttons, and all other unique embellishments as a safeguard in helping maintain the original integrity of the garment.”

Furthermore, try and clean your garments upon wearing them. Loeb explains that while you might not be able see any visible stains, the fabric is hosting perspiration, body oils, dead skin cells, and airborne contaminants, all of which micro-abrade fibers, oxidize over time, and even become aggravated with delayed cleaning.

If you do know there is a stain, make sure to advise your cleaner what it is, so technicians can treat it with the most effective formula to counteract it. And although tempting, try not to remove a stain yourself, for then the technician will have to first remove whatever you used to fix it before actually getting to the original culprit. And the sad truth is, using the wrong pre-treatment could make the stain permanent, remove color, or damage the fibers.

Sudsies is a preferred dry cleaner for luxury shopping areas, including Brickell City Centre, The Design District, Bal Harbour, and Lincoln Road. Sudsies’ reputation has become so renowned, that the cleaner receives items daily from clients around the world via its Sudsies Express mailing service. Locally, label lovers can enjoy complimentary pick up and delivery across Miami-Dade county, as well as Fort Lauderdale, Boca Raton, and Palm Beach or visit one of Sudsies’ boutiques.

More information about designer and couture services can be found at sudsies.com. Please dial 305.864.3279 or email info@dev.optfirst.org for any questions, concerns, restoration information, or specific queries and requests regarding your garments.