Style & Beauty

Preserve Clothes And Save Money With These 6 Tips (PHOTOS)

01/09/2013 03:39pm ET

A few weeks ago, our fashion editor wrote a piece about how she doesn't shop. Instead, she wears all the clothes she bought years earlier (and let me tell you, she looks amazing and so do her clothes). Although I have tons of pieces I bought years ago that I still adore, they are now worn out, faded and quite frankly, not wearable. All my clothes look like they went through the wringer, making them impossible to keep season after season.

While some of my favorite pieces have sustained a wine stain or the odd tear, most of my clothes need to be tossed because they are discolored, stretched out or got ruined in the wash. It's sometimes hard to avoid spilling your lunch on your outfit, but there are many tips and tricks that everyone can practice to ensure that you get the most mileage out of your wardrobe.

We spoke with vintage expert Laura Wills, owner of New York City retro emporium Screaming Mimi's, to get some advice on how to preserve clothes, both vintage and new. Here are her six best tips:

  1. It is very important that garments be stored in a clean area away from light. I have come across many pieces that have become faded especially along the shoulders from being hung on hangers in lit closets for too long.

  • Make sure that clothing is cleaned before storing. Invisible stains from deodorant residue or perfume can set and discolor clothing.
  • Knits need to be stored rolled or flat as they can become stretched and misshapen on hangers.
  • Store more delicate items flat between layers of tissue paper.
  • Make sure to bring your vintage pieces to a reputable dry cleaner who understands the fragility of the garments.
  • Invest in a steamer which does wonders in freshening up garments and cuts down on dry cleaning costs.
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