Although an everyday essential for many of us, black abaya can easily lose their lustre and look worn out before their time if we don’t take some special care when washing and ironing them. This goes without saying for the more intricate abayas with delicate bead and stonework which you may have paid a small fortune for. Even casual abayas are not necessarily inexpensive, so taking some time to care for them properly will ensure you don’t end up replacing them more often than you need to. We have compiled a list of top tips for your abaya care 🙂
How to Wash Delicates
Hand wash if you can – Hand washing is probably the best way to wash delicate abayas as you can be as gentle with the garment as you like. If hand washing is not possible for you, wash on a cold or delicate cycle in the washing machine. Washing at cooler temperatures is not only better for the environment, but it helps prevent shrinkage and protects any needlework or embellishments from unravelling.
Use a good quality softener
As well as helping your clothes smell nice and feel softer, fabric conditioner can help reduce the build-up of static and avoid the dreaded ‘static cling’ of abayas. However, go for a good quality one as cheaper ones don’t wash out as well, making the problem worse and also leaving powdery streaks on your abaya when it dries.
Active spinning in the washing machine can cause unnecessary creasing, loosen stone or bead work and stitching. Instead try drying the abaya on a hanger. It will take longer to dry but it will help the abaya to keep its shape and not require so much elbow grease when ironing.
Test the temperature when ironing
We’ve all done it. Burnt our favourite abaya when ironing in a rush. It’s worth testing the heat of the iron on the inside of the abaya, close to the hem. If it does end up catching, it’s in a discrete position and easy to mend.
Iron inside out – As well as being useful for testing the temperature, ironing inside out helps avoid those annoying silver iron marks, which can show up on black abayas.
Avoid ironing over embellishments
Ironing on crystals, beadings or motifs can leave an undesirable imprint of the pattern on the garment. In addition, any fabric used for motifs or ribbons can react differently to heat than the main fabric of the garment. It’s best to avoid ironing it all together, or lay a piece of fabric over the motif and iron over it so it acts as a barrier against the heat of the iron.
Abayas with pearls
Take particular care with abayas that have pearl detailing. With plastic imitation pearls, vigorous washing and drying can result in the iridescent coating peeling off the bead. This can reveal the unsightly white plastic underneath, which can ruin the whole look of the abaya. Ask before buying what kind of beads have been used and try to avoid plastic imitation pearls.
Good washing and ironing etiquette is key for keeping abayas in your life for longer. Do you have any tricks or tips that work well? Share below, we would love to hear from you!