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SamIAm's avatar

I have wool blanket that is dry clean only - but it's shedding like crazy! What are my options?

Asked by SamIAm (8628 points ) December 11th, 2011

It’s a beautiful blanket but it sheds like crazy. Will dry cleaning it stop this? I feel like it needs a good bath. Think I can wash it myself – on delicate?

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18 Answers

marinelife's avatar

Dry clean it. Washing it will shrink i really badly.

Coloma's avatar

I have often washed “dry clean only” items.
A cold, gentle wash cycle with Woolite and hanging it dry should be just fine.

Do not put it in the dryer! Obviously.

Once it is dry you can then fluff it in the dryer with some ant-static dryer sheets and that will help remove any extra fuzz and soften the blanket again.

I’d say it’s pretty safe to do this, but, disclaimer: Proceed at your own risk. lol

I have a 100% wool Odabashian oriental rug in my living room and yes, it sheds quite a bit. I vacuum it and then go over it with a damp washcloth to peel off any layers of shedding, then, vacuum again.

tranquilsea's avatar

I routinely washed my wool sweater in cold water and then hung it dry. I would re-shape it after it hit the hanger.

Then one day my husband decided to “help” with the laundry. He threw in the drier and viola it became a beautiful sweater for my 8 year old daughter.

Coloma's avatar

@tranquilsea

Haha…recently I really blew it and tossed a little throw rug in the washer with a white micro-fiber bathrobe.
Big mistake!
The rug is a nappy rust and beige pile design and my bathrobe came out covered in orange fuzz. It was hopeless. It’s now been recycled as a cat blanket in the garage. lol

HungryGuy's avatar

I know this won’t help you now, but I have a queen size bed, so I buy king size blankets so they can shrink in the wash. Just sayin’...

SamIAm's avatar

It’s just a throw blanket…. I don’t use it because it sheds so much. But I want to use it because it’s very soft and comfy. I think I’ll try it on cold/delicate and no dryer. Thanks guys!

cazzie's avatar

Just to let you know, it’s not the heat that shrinks wool, it’s the agitation. I’m wondering if it’s a wool blend of some sort, and not just wool. I guess, giving it a gentle wash in the machine might get the wool fibers to matt and felt together a bit and stop shedding. Good luck.

JLeslie's avatar

If you wash it, it has to be cold water, absolutely no heat in the dryer if you choose to tumble it a little, and I mean none. If you don’t have a good place to lay it flat to dry you will have a problem getting something as large as a blanket dry. If you live in a cold climate and your heat is on in your house, the dry air should help it to dry, but still stay on top of flipping it over if it is on a flat service so both sides dry as quickly as possible. Long drying time is a bad thing, the moisture can cause the item to smell mildewy.

The problem with your blanket, from what I can tell in the photo, is the weave is rather loose, and tons of room for shrinkage, and even tightly woven wool can shrink easily.

JLeslie's avatar

How can wool be comfy? Do you mean warm?

Coloma's avatar

So I wonder, if I give the neighbors sheep a bath in hot water and blow dry them will they shrink? lol

JLeslie's avatar

@cazzie Heat does indeed shrink wool.

HungryGuy's avatar

@Coloma – Ooooh! Kinky… :-p

cazzie's avatar

Heat alone does not shrink wool.

JLeslie's avatar

@cazzie If a garment is wet I think it does, even if the garment was not agitated. Let’s do an expirement. Take one of your wool garment, measure it, wet it, and then dry it dry, let me know. That way I can dry my wool garments in the future, which would be very convenient.

cazzie's avatar

@JLeslie It’s been done. Just google it. And I didn’t say in a dryer, did I? If you are drying it, it is being pounded about. When things are agitated and tossed about in a dryer, the fibers will matt and felt. Heat, in this environment, makes it worse. Heat, ALONE does not shrink garments.

JLeslie's avatar

@cazzie I actually have a shelf I can put in my dryer so things don’t tumble. I am not willing to try it though. I’ll google it, but I am resistant to believing it. I do agree agitation harms the fibers.

judochop's avatar

@JLeslie Oh, Pendelton Wool blankets are most comfortable things on earth. It’s like being wrapped back up in the womb.

I would highly suggest doing just what the maker suggests, dry cleaning. You could spring for a dry cleaning bag but I would not risk it.

Dry clean only on the wool stuff. The combo of hot water and hot air will in fact shrink your blanket. Not only shrink it but bunch it up in strange places. It will never be the same again.

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