If you’ve invested time and money in creating a beautiful wardrobe of heirloom baby clothes for your little one, caring for and storing these precious belongings correctly will allow them to be treasured, handed down and loved again in years to come.
A lot of care and attention goes into crafting these high-quality, timeless pieces. Preserve them well, and they will be yours to cherish and pass on as heirlooms to your children in the future.
What’s Special about Heirloom Baby Clothes?
“Heirloom” clothing is crafted with love, made to high-quality standards and stands the test of time.
An heirloom garment is timeless and would be appropriate to wear now, in 20 years or in 50! Classic styles and colours make these baby clothes extremely versatile. Good quality buttons and ties are favoured over zippers, and quality fabrics such as organic cotton and Modal are used.
Because you want your child to enjoy their heirloom clothes for as long as possible and then pass them down to future generations, these beautiful garments need a little TLC when they are laundered and stored.
How to Wash Your Heirloom Baby Clothes
Clumsy laundering of clothing is one of the quickest ways to cause damage. Be sure to check the manufacturer’s label before washing any of your precious heirloom garments.
The “correct” way to wash your little one’s clothes will vary depending on the type of fabric — what works for our Cotton Cord pieces could significantly damage our delicate knitwear or cotton muslin pieces.
Organic cotton contains some of the softest fibres in the world, keeping your baby snug and cosy while allowing their skin to breathe. From organic cotton bloomers to organic cotton headbands, this delicate yet incredibly durable fabric should be laundered on gentle machine wash in a laundry bag and line dried in the shade.
Cotton muslin is the perfect material for light and cool spring/summer clothes and winter layers. Due to its delicate nature, gentle hand washing is the best way to launder garments made from this fabric. If you must machine wash cotton muslin, use a gentle cycle and pop in a laundry bag and line dry in the shade.
Cotton knitwear allows the skin to breathe while keeping your little one’s body warm. 100% cotton knitwear is soft, snuggly and perfect for all seasons. Hand wash or machine wash on a cold setting and do not tumble dry. For best results, select a delicate wash and pop your heirloom baby clothes in a laundry bag. Washing and line drying on the same day will keep your cotton knitwear in the best shape. Always keep knitwear folded. Putting knitwear on a hanger will distort the shoulders and stretch the knit weave.
Cotton ribbed fabric is often used for essential everyday garments such as baby leggings and bodysuits. Choose a gentle machine wash and line dry to prolong the life of garments made from ribbed cotton.
For clothes made with natural wooden buttons, avoid folding when damp and ensure garments are not left in the washing machine while damp, be sure to lay flat to dry as this can result in colour running from the buttons to the fabric.
How to Store Heirloom Baby Clothes
Whether you plan to save your favourite baby heirloom clothes as keepsakes or pass them on to your children in the future, careful storage will help to preserve them in the best condition possible.
- Wash and dry — make sure that every piece of clothing is laundered and completely dry.
- Prevent stains forming — Always ensure to act on a stain quickly and do not let it soak into the garment for a long period of time.
- Keep moisture out! — avoid wrapping your precious baby clothes in plastic bags as this will trap moisture and could result in mildew. Plastic storage containers are the best choice.
- Wrap each garment — line the container with acid-free tissue paper and wrap each piece. Stuff booties, hats and similar items to help them keep their shape.
- Banish moths — several fragrant herbs help repel moths, including lavender, rosemary, thyme, cloves and bay leaves. Lavender is most commonly used when storing previous clothes as it protects them from damage by moths and gives them a delicate scent. Pop a few sprigs of lavender into several bags and bury them between the layers of tissue-paper wrapped clothes.
- Label and store — label each box and each garment if you choose. This will help you find exactly what you’re looking for when the time comes to retrieve your beloved heirloom clothes. Store in a place with a moderate temperature — avoid extremes such as cold, damp basements or toasty lofts!
No matter how carefully you wash and store baby heirloom clothing, it can become stained over time, or those pesky moths could sneak past your carefully positioned lavender bags and wreak havoc. So it’s a good idea to check on your previous keepsakes once a year. Don’t see this as another chore to add to the list. You’ll enjoy taking a trip down memory lane and looking ahead to the future when the time is right to pass your beautiful and perfectly preserved baby heirloom clothes on to your children.
Shop Jamie Kay’s gorgeous range of heirloom baby clothes online. Browse through our entire catalogue or shop by collection. From organic cotton essentials and beautiful dresses to cosy bloomers and stylish playsuits, we’ve got everything you need to create a collection of heirloom baby clothes you’ll be eager to care for and pass on.