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373 Overtoom
Amsterdam-West, NH, 1054 JN

+31 20 681 5792

De Oost Bespoke Tailoring is an Amsterdam based tailoring house with a contemporary sense of style & personal attention. We design and tailor suits, shirts, jackets, trousers, skirts and coats for ladies & gentlemen. 

 

 

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How to care for, clean and maintain your suit

Jean-Paul Samson

At De Oost Bespoke Tailoring we are justifiably proud of the garments we make and would love you to feel the same way long after the first time that you put your new suit on. Here are a few helpful tips to ensure your suit enjoys a long and immaculate lifespan. Our pricelist.


First the basics.

  1. No Washing
    It is not possible to wash the garments tailored by De Oost. Not with a washing machine and not by hand. Dry cleaning is therefore the best option.
  2. No Bleaching
    Your clothes can not be treated with bleach. The garment is not colorfast or structurally withstand use of such products.
  3. Ironing
    Ironing, steaming and drying, at a temperature of 110 degrees Celsius.
  4. Dry cleaning
    Each detergent can be used safely except Trichloroethylene.

Caring
 

Although it may sound obvious, you have to begin by handling your suit with care. A tailored suit is an investment in your (business) future and should be treated accordingly. 

For the first timers, you spend proper money on your first great suit, so there’s no worse feeling than seeing it fall apart before your own eyes. Careful care can help you prevent this fate, but so few people are really aware of just what is involved in suit maintenance. Like polishing your shoes, or learning to shave properly, or how to tie a bow tie, it’s become part of that lost esoteric knowledge of manhood.

A suit that’s been cared for properly can outlive the man who bought it, making proper suit care not just a matter of style, but economy as well. The small rules that make up suit care are simple, take only a bit of time, and add years to your suit. So before you send that three piece off to the cleaners, please observe all the other steps mentioned below.


Resting

After a long day at the office you need a rest; so does your suit. For each day of work a suit needs at least a day of rest. If it has been worn for several days in succession – and we’d much prefer that it wasn’t – the rest period should be lengthened to match.


Hanging
 

In practice, this means that the suit should be hung up on a broad, well-shaped hanger after it has been worn. Ideally, the hanger should be broader at the ends to better fill the shoulders. Make sure you have emptied all your pockets before you hang up your jacket.

Hang your suit when you are not wearing it. As we have already noted, you should never use flimsy metal hangers and should take care, hang your suit in a space where it isn’t cramped up against other clothes. The right hanger will have a contoured shape that matches the shape and drape of your jacket, will be wide enough to touch each edge of the shoulders and will be made of a natural wood that helps absorb moisture from fabric. Cedar wood hangers also work as repellants for predators such as moths.

Cedar wood coat hanger.

Cedar wood coat hanger.


The suit hanger will also help smooth out any wrinkles that you end up with during the course of your day, whether its from driving or leaning up against a wall.  If you do wear suits to work and take off your jacket during the day, I advise keeping a hanger at the office versus hanging it over the back of your chair as this could impact its shape as well.

Hangers are crucial when it comes to suiting. Your choice of hanger can help maintain the shape of your jacket and ultimately help it last longer. Just as with the suit brush, it is up to your pockets to determine how much you want to spend on one.


Brushing

Before you hang your suit away it should be given a quick brush. Brushing your suit after every outing is the best way to ensure that it stays in top form. The fabric of a suit loses its integrity over time as dirt and unseen particles build up. A decent suit brush will help you prolong its life. This should be done with a clothes brush made of natural bristle, available from most good department stores. A suit brush looks much like your hair brush, with a wooden or plastic body/handle and bristles made from either synthetic material or real animal hair. Natural animal hair is your best bet, to ensure that the bristles are not so coarse that they damage your suit. Apply your shaving strategy and brush downwards only. 

Clothes brushes made with horse hair.

Clothes brushes made with horse hair.

We advise against the use of sticky rolls that are designed to pick up fluff as these can leave behind traces of adhesive on the material, which can cause considerable damage. We've found it much easier to remove hairs and fluff with our fingertips.

We advise against the use of sticky rolls.

We advise against the use of sticky rolls.

Go gently when you brush your suit. Although we do our best to ensure that your buttons are fastened securely, over exuberant brushing can cause premature wearing to the thread.


Airing

A suit should not disappear into the wardrobe immediately after it has been brushed. It is better to let it air for a while by an open window or in a bathroom.

Keep your suits in a place where they can breathe. Be aware that keeping a suit in an airtight bag for storage might seem like a good idea, but don’t be surprised to find mold or even moths eating at your favorite blazer. If you have got a suit bag, some recommend leaving the zip open a bit to let air in and out.


Moths

Moths.

Moths.

Moths are a real danger, and often times, once you’ve spotted them, it’s too late. Moths lay around one hundred eggs, and once they hatch, the little jerks are going to be hungry. Needless to say this is a virtual death sentence on a suit.

Lavender pouches.

Lavender pouches.

Though some advocate mothballs as a prevention method, the smell is unpleasant, and they only work in a sealed enclosure, like a suit bag. Dried lavender leaves, sealed in pouches and kept in pockets, repel moths just as effectively without the same drawbacks. Barring this, cleaning your closet and vacuuming the space regularly will work wonders.


Steaming

Steam clean your suit after wearing, but only if needed. This will clean it and remove wrinkles at the same time with the need for ironing. A good steamer isn’t cheap, but it’s a worthwhile investment. Steaming your suit is a delicate method of removing wrinkles and odours and won’t damage the fibres. Avoid using a regular iron to press your suits as the high temperature may cause damage. Also avoid steaming the chest area, which may disrupt the shape of the internal canvas.

Steamer by Tefal, similar to the one we use.

Steamer by Tefal, similar to the one we use.

Some suit enthusiasts also invest in a trouser press, a machine that gently and automatically presses suit pants. The trouser press is a time tested method of clothing care that’s stood up to fifty years of scrutiny and use.

Trouser press.

Trouser press.

Wool fibres need moisture to maintain their elasticity. Your clothes can be steamed easily in any bathroom – this is a great tip for those of you who travel. Close all the windows and air vents, run hot water until steam forms, and then hang up the suit for a while in the misty atmosphere you have created. This gets rid of most wrinkles and helps remove unpleasant odours.


Dry Cleaning

We would prefer it if you kept dry cleaning to a bare minimum. The traditionalists on Savile Row say that it is quite unnecessary: brushing, airing and steaming are quite sufficient, while stains should be treated individually.You can also do a lot yourself, after a big night hang your suit outside and use a damp cloth to clean any spots. Others see no danger in dry cleaning. Our major concerns are associated with how a garment is ironed afterwards. Anyone who has seen how a suit is treated at the dry cleaners around the corner will definitely stick to brushing and airing

There’s a perception that if your suit gets dirty or wrinkled, you need to have it cleaned. It’s absolute nonsense. Dry-cleaning should only happen when your suit gets irrecoverably dirty, and some purists have their suits cleaned as little as once a season.                                                                                                                             
The chemicals involved in dry cleaning can wear out the wool, and if your suit is just a bit wrinkly, and not dirty, they should simply be pressed rather than dry-cleaned. The suit will come back from the cleaners just as crisp, but without having been subjected to the same chemicals.                                                                             
As for the rest, there’s nothing that says you need a dry cleaner. Small stains can be steamed out with a hand-steamer, or brushed out with a good, stiff suit brush. Base your dry cleaning habits on your suit’s fabric. Fabrics of higher micron numbers (higher than Super 150s wool) are richer and softer, but also finer and more fragile. Dry clean these as infrequently as possible. 


Travelling

When you receive your brand new De Oost bespoke tailored suit, it comes with a cloth bag. A cloth bag is the way to go, because it encourages greater air flow and allows your suit to breathe. A bag also protects against moths and wrinkles. Wait a dayor so after wearing your suit to put it into a bag, and make sure your closet is not packed so tightly that air can’t reach it.

A garment bag is a must if you are a serious traveller with a suit. Look for one that is easy to carry, light and breathable. If a garment bag is totally out of the question, learn how to properly fold and pack a suit in a way that minimises wrinkles and offers maximum protection. 

Garment Bag.

Garment Bag.

When packing your suit for a business trip/travel (without the use of a garment bag) always turn the Jacket inside-out making sure to pull the shoulders all the way through. We've found that lining rubbing against lining causes far less creasing than wool against wool. Some fabrics like Mohair are wrinkle-proof and are therefore ideal for travelling.


De OOST Prefers to dryclean YOUR GARMENTS by ourselves, please Have a look at our pricelist.

Questions? Please contact us by email; deoost@deoost.nl or call us at 0031-(0)20-6815792.  Your Dry cleaner can also contact us for questions. We are at your service.

With regards,

JEAN-PAUL SAMSON