1. Wash clothes less frequently
Constantly submitting fabrics to soaking, detergent and spinning can wear them out, so try to hold off washing items until they really need it. Some jeans brands even advise never washing your denim, instead simply spot-cleaning. It can be all too easy to throw pieces into the wash basket at the end of the day, but instead hang them up to air, preferably outside of the wardrobe, until putting them back to store the following morning.
2. Pay attention to care labels
When you do wash them, pay attention to how they should be washed. While some brands may err on the side of caution when it comes to the care labels they assign, it's better to be safe than sorry.
3. Handwash your underwear
Yes, we know it takes time, but when you're investing in beautiful lingerie, it's important to keep it that way. Underwiring in bras can become misshapen in a washing machine, which can also affect the support.
4. Use garment-storage bags
While it's tempting to put your dry-cleaning straight back into the wardrobe, plastic dry-cleaning bags can trap moisture and the chemicals used in cleaning, and cause clothes to yellow. Instead, remove them from the plastic bags and put them in specialist garment-storage bags that protect but allow the fabric to breathe.
5. Invest in good hangers
Wire or plastic hangers can often stretch the shoulders of garments, so replace them with wooden or padded ones.
6. Use a clothes shaver to remove any pilling
Even the most top-quality wool and cashmere can suffer from bobbling after time. Contrary to popular belief, a gentle scraping of the textile with a specialist tool will ensure it looks like new again.
7. Wash dark clothing inside out
Dark fabrics can bleed when washed and fading is slightly inevitable over time. However, try turning clothes inside out when washing and using a specialist colour-protecting detergent to lessen the effects.
8. Prevent moths
The most destructive thing for your clothes is not the moth itself but the larvae it lays, which are invisible to the naked eye. Cedar balls and lavender sachets can deter moths, but new product The Moth Decoy aims to stop the reproductive cycle entirely. A small tablet draws male moths away from your wardrobe with female pheromones and then blocks receptors with an electrostatic powder; this then prevents the moth finding a female mate and producing eggs, putting an end to the cycle entirely.
9. Care for your leather
For emergency cleaning, wash marks and scuffs by hand with water and a mild soap, and hang to dry. Leather conditioner can be applied afterwards to retain the texture. By far the safest option, however, is to take it for specialist leather cleaning at your local dry-cleaner.
10. Storing for the season
When changing from your winter to summer wardrobe, separate clothes into those that need to be washed or dry-cleaned and those that are ready to be stored. This is also a good time to hoover your wardrobe and give it a once-over with a damp cloth. Be warned: you may have worn that cashmere jumper just once, but if moth larvae have got to it and you store it straight into a storage bag, you'll end up with a sweater resembling Edam cheese. If you can't wash the garment, place it in a freezer bag for at least 10 days. The low temperature will kill any eggs that may be there.