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Clothes for specific weather

How to autumn-proof your wardrobe

How to autumn-proof your wardrobe

Gone are the days of entirely separate winter and summer wardrobes. With seasons bleeding into each other as the weather becomes less predictable, light cotton is as handy right now as it was two months ago.

But odds are you’ve not been wearing your thick knits, enveloping coats or heavy boots during the heatwave. Which means they’ve gone at least six months without an airing. Before they rejoin your wardrobe rotation full time, it’s worth giving them a once-over to make sure they’re ready for foul weather.

“The best time to prepare your wardrobe for winter is at the start of spring,” says Will Lankston, from premium dry cleaner Jeeves of Belgravia. If you weren’t quite that organised (join the club) then don’t panic. There’s still plenty you can do to give your wardrobe a spruce up before the weather turns.


Clean your coats

You can’t survive winter without a proper coat, and whether you go for a wool pea coat or a down jacket, they need some TLC if they’re going to keep you warm and dry. “It’s best to get your coats dry cleaned,” says Lankston. “They’re often more cumbersome and specialised than other clothes so benefit from a proper clean twice a year.” Keeping them free from grime and hanging them properly also ensures they’ll last longer.


Polish (and waterproof) your shoes

Keeping your shoes polished is about more than making sure they’re shiny; the polish acts as another layer on the leather, protecting them from rain or snow. If you’re still braving canvas or opting for suede, spray liberally with shoe protector before you head outside. Check your soles too, or any holes will become very apparent on the first sodden day. If they look worn, visit a cobbler to get them replaced.


Check for moths

Clothes moths love knitwear (and therefore autumn wardrobes) and unfortunately there’s a rise of them in the UK this year. But you can protect against them. “Any clothes that have been stored for a long period of time should be checked for moth damage before wearing,” says Lankston. If you spot telltale holes, especially along seams, then you need to eradicate the infestation with a professional cleaning, ideally of as much of your wardrobe as possible.

Prevention is always better than cure and Lankston recommends updating anti-moth products every couple of months, “Modelli or Acana moth sachets are great for drawers or to hang in wardrobes.”


Reproof your jackets

Waterproofs can lose their resilience over time, and again, it’s not something you want to discover on your commute. Wax jackets need regular re-waxing – if you see light spots, that’s where the rain’s going to get in – which you can do at home with a tin of paraffin wax. Trench coats can also lose their rain-fighting abilities and need re-proofing every season. Just spray, leave to do its thing, then feel smug the next time the heavens open.


Words: Nadia Balame-Price
Illustration: Tom Jay