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Blacker blacks.

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Every cycle through the laundry removes more black dye and roughs up the surface, creating a fuzzy fade effect. Consumer Reports says, when you absolutely must wash, turn black garments inside out to protect the surface, sort items by color and weight, and wash in cold water in the shortest cycle possible. Avoid detergent with bleach and measure carefully to avoid streaking. Hang inside to dry, laying sweaters flat on a lint-free towel. Dry cleaning your favorite black items will keep the just-bought look a lot longer than laundering.

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White whites.

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According to the experts at Consumer Reports, greying white clothes are picking up soil from other garments in a crowded washer without enough detergent. Wash white separately, don’t pack the washer and measure the detergent. If more whitening is needed, try a detergent with bleaching components, an oxidizer like OxiClean or hang clothing in the sun for natural whitening. Of course, we’re experts at keeping whites white — removing stubborn stains and brightening vintage wedding gowns are just two specialities you’ll find behind our doors.

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Bridal planning 101.

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Book early – caterers, venues, florists and popular bands and DJs are first-come, first-booked. Visit a bridal fair for ideas, connections and free advice from wedding professionals. Is this a good time to mention we are very, very experienced with wedding gowns, alterations, formal wear and the inevitable last-minute emergency. You can count on us for more than archival gown preservation after the event. Let’s get your date on our calendar so we can be part of your wedding plan.

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Hanging out.

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If you’re lucky enough to enjoy an outdoor clothesline, there are a few tricks to drying laundry outdoors. Shake damp laundry to smooth out wrinkles before hanging. Dry shirts on hangers for crease-free results, ready for touchup ironing. Hang pants by the bottom hem. That’s the way to hang t-shirts and polos, too. Hang “departments” of like items to make sorting and folding go faster. Splurge on good wooden clothespins and don’t forget to wipe down the clothesline when it gets grimy.

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Eco-awareness.

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Summer’s a great time to change habits for a cleaner, healthier environment. Start by cutting down on water waste with shorter showers, full loads of laundry and dishes, filtered water instead of bottled. Repair and recycle appliances, furniture and clothing. Instead of tossing (eventually into a landfill) repair worn heels, replace zippers or restitch a sagging hem. We do more than clean – we can help keeping your wardrobe repaired, fitted and functional. And please, bring your wire hangers back for recycling!

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Necktie wisdom.

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“A well-tied tie is the first serious step in life,” said poet Oscar Wilde, famous for his “living well is the best revenge.” Before your well-tied knot has a chance to help, be sure your tie is spotless. It’s another universal truth that the more expensive the tie, the more prone it seems to attract soup, café au lait or wine stains. Our stain experts know how to gently restore your neckwear to like-new condition.

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Wash or clean?

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When to dryclean, when to throw it in the wash machine? Convenience and quality aside, there are situations when dry cleaning simply is the best choice: Acetate, rayon or silk, leather or fur garments or trim, tricky to iron, structured or tailored with interfacing, specially finished, stiffened garments. The number one reason to trust it to us – your garment is expensive, fragile or special. We do it all, from dungarees to designer.

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Post-winter cleaning.

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Before you stow away your warm winter items, make sure they’re thoroughly clean. Down items can often be home laundered, but woolen or cashmere overcoats and scarves definitely need dry cleaning. Don’t forget your footwear—salt stains can ruin expensive leather. White vinegar mixed one to one with water can remove salt: dampen a soft cloth with the mixture and rub vigorously into the stain until all traces of salt are removed. When completely dry, rub in a small amount of leather conditioner to prevent dullness or cracking.

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Stain no-nos.

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Beware D.I.Y stain remover tips – they often do more harm than good. Remember three basics: 1. Never pick or scratch at the stain, it breaks the fabric and causes permanent damage. 2. Don’t rub anything into the stain – you are pushing the stain into the fabric, not taking it out. 3. Do not put anything on the stain, it can cause color loss. Trust our cleaning experts. Save your favorite garment and bring it to us immediately – and be sure to tell us what you spilled. We’re trained to get stains out, professionally.

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