ok, since my last blog posts have been waaaayyyy to heavy, here's a nice little break. this post is all about how to show some sweet love to that soft cotton gently caressing your skin. i love laundry, and i love my tees, and i want them to last. so here is how i have found to best take care of your since-broken-up band t shirts, ones you got that proudly show you have been to gainsville florida or niagara falls, or one from that boy/girl friend that broke your heart and left you but forgot their shirt, and you still sleep with it every night. although, be warned, washing will remove the boy/girlfriend smell, so if you are really that creepy, do not follow this advice. instead, go get yourself laid.
t shirt care starts as soon as you take of your shirt. forget what your mother told you about putting all your shirts right side out so she doesnt have to do it when folding. dont. take the shirt off over your head like a normal person and leave it inside out. this will be important for both the washing and drying steps.
alright, the wash. do separate colors, at least to some extent. if all you listen to is metal, i'll assume all you have is black. but for those of us with more diverse interests, remember that your whites will really look blah if you just throw it all together. for detergent, i have never really found that the detergent matters much, but thats just me. just something mild, colorsafe if you want, but i dont bother. just dont use very much of it. seriously, like 1/4 of what is recommended on the package. put it on a gentle cycle with cool water, and let it go. chose a short cycle time. now, the reason it is best to have the shirt inside out is the design on the outside will be protected from rubbing up on everything as it is sloshing around in there. also, if something got in the wash that you didnt mean to, something that was in a pocket or something, if it stains the shirt it will hopefully just be on the inside of the shirt. it may leak through, but hey, youve got a better shot this way.
ok, drying is the most important part to protect your beloved t. now, living in asia, i have gotten used to line-drying my clothes for years, because people rarely have dryers. it is cheaper, more eco friendly, your clothes dont wear out as fast and they dont shrink. if you cant be bothered to line dry, stop reading right now cause i dont give fuck about your laziness. others more inclined, follow along. now, if you do have a washer that will do a quick spin to get rid of the excess water, you can use that. then take your wet shirts to your line. your line should be in the direct sunlight if you live in a humid or cold area, indirect if you live in a very hot, dry location. i dont like to hang the shirts on a hanger, because i am a girl and i dont want them too long if they stretch. so i hang them on a drying hanger or rack thing, usually used for towels. its great cause i can hang a bunch together. now, when you hang them, the inside of the shirt is out, and the front should be facing down, so if anything touches them, or the line is dirty, or you forget and leave your clothes out for days and days and they get sun bleached, its the inside of the back of the shirt that gets messed up. leave them there for as little time as possible as to avoid sun damage, but make sure they are totally dry. you dont want them getting mildewy later.
ok, time to fold. now is the time to turn the shirt right side in again. i used to just leave them inside out at this step, because i liked to grab a shirt at random not knowing whet it was, and wear whatever i got. but is a reason to turn them out. obviously, if you can see the design you can find the shirt you are looking for. but the more important reason in this: you know when your shirt with a vinyl design starts to get cracks? that is from both the dryer and from folding. you can see sometimes the cracks are right around the middle, because that is a fold line. to reduce the fold line as much as possible, the vinyl should be as far away from the crease as it can be, which means the shirt should be folded right side in with the front (or design side) folded to the outside. it would be better to fold in thirds, but they always seem to get messed up on my shelf that way, so i like to fold them in quarters. so grab the bottom corners of the shirt so it is upside down, shake out the wrinkles (this will also line up the seams, and fold in half and then in half the other way. now you can see the design, and i recommend putting them all in the same direction so when you stack them they are easier to look through.
now, this is obviously not the best way to protect a shirt., its just the best way with my particular means. if you wanted, you could hang them (but i dont like the shoulder points), or lay them all flat (i dont have the room). basically i wrote this because every time i do laundry i have a reason for each step, and i wanted to organize it. this is clearly not important at all, but it really does work. i have tshirts that i absolutely love, and i know they will wear out eventually, but i want to wear them for as long as possible. i know the vintage look is in, but i dont want that fir my colorful, artsy t shirts.
oh, and another thing i noticed is that messenger bags or any bags that go across your chest will wear out a vinyl design if the shirt is not of the highest quality. there are tons of awesome small time t shirt designers where i live, but a lot of the time the shirt quality is sub par. so i am extra careful with these. this is my most recent favorite.
hope my rediculous method of caring for t's has helped someone out there. probably not, cause if you havent already figured this out for yourself, or have your own method, then you probably couldnt care less. but i realize i do so many things in my life pragmatically (even if my reasoning is sometimes incorrect), maybe i should keep track of just how loony i am. so there you go.