There's no use building a wardrobe of perfectly-fitting, on-point menswear if you don't take the time to care for it, especially when it comes to your suits. The more you look after your clothes, the better they'll make you look. So here's a quick guide to keep your sartoria in head-turning order.
Apply a little prudence when planning your outfits. If you're expecting wet weather, leave the velvet at home. If it's going to be warm, heavy wool will make you sweat and absorb a little body odour. So dress for the occasion as best as possible, and rotate your clothing to slow the degradation of wear and tear.
2. Know Your Dry-Cleaner
To keep your suits in top condition, know your dry-cleaner. Learn their first name. Ask how quickly they can press a suit in times of crisis to remove those forgotten stains and deep wrinkles.
But don't be fooled into believing that a dry-cleaner is a problem-free solution to your lavish lifestyle. Dry-cleaning your suits can reduce their lifespan. The finer quality the fabric the more quickly they'll wear out, especially for finer threads like super 150s wool. And if incompetence comes into play, a dry-cleaner can irreparably shrink and damage your garments, so choose wisely. If you're unsure, ask your local luxury boutiques if they have any recommendations.
So to be safe, leave dry-cleaning for major emergencies. Wherever you can, ask to have only the soiled areas spot-cleaned. Or better yet, do it yourself by gently rubbing the stain with a damp cloth and hanging your suit out to dry.
3. Lose The iron
Suits wrinkle, especially if worn whilst sitting, but don't even think about using your iron to get those creases out. Instead, invest in a quality steamer, which will remove wrinkles and odours without damaging the fibres of your suit, or endangering its shape and form. And if you're caught out with a wrinkled suit and no steamer, hang it in the bathroom and take a long, hot shower - the steam will do the job for you.
4. Store Your Suits
If you're like me, you'll have a favourite sport coat or suit that gets worn far more than some others that haunt your wardrobe. You might have some that suit certain occasions, or are so situationally boisterous that Dolce and Gabbana would be proud to have designed them. Either way, proper storage is imperative to keep them in good condition.
Firstly, use a proper suit hanger. This will prolong the shape of your jacket and diminish lesser wrinkles sustained during wearing. A wire hanger will never, ever be adequate. Instead, look for something strong and wide that allows a jacket to hang freely yet firmly. If possible, choose wood over plastic.
Then hang it inside a cloth suit bag. You want air flow to your suit to allow it to lose any odours that it may have picked up, and to dissuade any from forming whilst in storage. A plastic suit bag, or anything similarly non-breathable, will do the opposite and should be binned as soon as possible.
5. Brush Your Suits
Like a good beard, suits need brushing too. Over time, dust and dirt will settle onto the fabric and damage the integrity of the fabric. Hunt down a quality suit brush, which will look a lot like a hair brush with softer, paint brush-like bristles. If possible, find a brush with real animal hair as these will be gentler on the fabrics of your suits and be far less likely to cause any damage. And to be doubly sure, only brush downwards.
6. Take Care When Travelling
When they travel, your suits too need protection and care. So care for them and invest in a quality suit/garment bag that allows you to hang and bi-fold your outfits whilst they're in transit. Breathability too is important, especially if you're passing through humid regions, as is a tough exterior that will protect your suits from careless handling.