Caring for vintage

Dealing with decades of accumulated dirt and stubborn stains requires longer and riskier processes in many cases, and plenty of patience and experience. For this reason,these pieces have been already thoroughly cleaned and repaired for you. Not only to bring you ready-to-wear clothes, but to simplify their care from thereon. Find below my general tips for keeping your Golden Crane Vintage garments in great condition.

Over-laundering may compromise the lifespan of  your vintage clothes. Rotate the garments in your collection regularly and try to freshen them up between washings by steaming, spot treating if necessary and airing them outside.

I am in favor of, whenever possible, hand washing vintage clothing. Very exceptionally, we send some pieces to an environmentally friendly dry cleaner. We recommend you to search for a PERC-free dry cleaner in your area whenever you need to use this method.

Steps for handwashing:
  • The first thing is to treat the stains. Most of them will disappear by leaving a small amount of soap for delicates on for five minutes. Massage carefully the stain only if necessary and remove soap by gently blotting the area with a clean napkin. If you are not going to wash the garment afterwards, be sure to completely remove soap to avoid water marks

    If you buy a garment in this shop described with a stain, I invite you to accept it, as you would with other signs of use.
    If it is there, it is because We tried to remove it without success. Repeatedly trying to remove old stains will only weaken the fabric.

  • We love white vinegar. It deodorizes, prevents color bleeding and softens fabrics. Before washing your garment, add half a cup of white vinegar and fill the bathtub or sink with cold water. Let it sit for about 20 minutes and then rinse. Don't worry about the smell, it will disappear when the garment dries.

  • Prepare to wash by turning every item inside out to avoid friction and fading. Always use a mild soap suitable for delicate fabrics such as wool or silk. Submerge your items and gently agitate them with your hands to evenly distribute soap on cold water. Soak for up to 20 minutes.

  • If you are dealing with a garment that tends to expel a lot of color into the water, especially if it is not a solid color, I recommend cutting steps 2 and 3 in half the time. Vinegar can make the difference between ending with a piece full of color bleeding or an impeccable result.

  • Run cool water through items until rinse water is no longer soapy. Do not wring. Instead, gently press the water out of your items between your hands or against the sink.

  • Then, roll the garment in a clean towel to absorb excess water before laying flat to dry, ideally on an airy space hidden from direct sunlight. Lay the items flat in their natural shapes on a hard surface or on a drying rack.

  • For me, iron and clothing steamer are complementary tools. For example, I use the iron for stronger fabrics like cotton or linen, because it removes stubborn wrinkles very well. For the most delicate fabrics, and to refresh the garments between washes, I use the steamer, not only because it removes wrinkles but also odors and bacteria. If you only have an iron, I recommend you adjust the temperature depending on the type of fabric, always iron on the wrong side and with steam option, and put a piece of fabric in between your garment and the iron when dealing with a fine or delicate fabric.

Some very delicate, structured or antique pieces cannot be washed. In that case, I recommend you to spot treating following step one, airing the piece and steaming it with special care instead of attempting to wash it.

About certain materials:
  • Cotton: A strong fabric that handles warm water. However, I always recommend you lukewarm water unless the piece is really dirty.
  • Wool: Tends to shrink easily, so it is very important to always use cold water. Being an organic fabric, when wet it gives off a unique, cozy smell that disappears when it dries.
  • Polyester: A very strong fabric that accepts higher temperatures and the only one that you can wash in the washing machine if you want. However, I recommend that you always put the garment in a protective bag.
  • Silk: An organic fabric that must be treated with care. In many cases, it is easily colorfast, so I recommend using cold water and shortening washing times, especially if you’re dealing with a printed or multi-colored garment. Always use vinegar during the process, which will also help you restore its unique shine and softness.
  • Rayon: It is a fact that rayon can shrink when it comes in contact with water. However, it is possible to wash it by hand and return it to its original shape afterwards. If you don't have enough time or patience, I recommend you to go for dry cleaning.
    Always use cold water and add vinegar to prevent color bleeding. When washing, handle the piece with care, as the fibers become delicate when wet. Drain the water carefully, without twisting the fabric and placing it on a towel as indicated in step 6. In some cases, rayon will now be shrunken.  When it's almost dry, use a clothing steamer and it will gradually get back to its original size and shape. If you don't have a clothing steamer, you can iron on the wrong side of the fabric (with the garment inside out). A damp cloth between the iron and item will be safest, since heat can melt these fibers and create shiny patches all over the fabric.

Always store knits folded to prevent stretching or distorting.

Use wood or padded hangers for all your vintage clothes.

Keep your heavier or most delicate pieces (beaded pieces, chiffon, delicate) inside a box instead of hanging them on a hanger to prevent damage.

Store your pieces clean and in a dry place with lavender drops on cotton balls, bay leaves or cedar wood balls to keep moths and other unwelcome guests away.