If that silk sweater you bought is a little big, you have a good chance of shrinking it by changing a few steps in your normal laundry routine. Silk is taken from the silk worm's cocoon, and according to Fabrics.net, "a natural glue, sericin, secreted by silkworms and not totally removed during manufacturing of the silk, is a natural sizing which is brought out when washing in warm water." So washing silk can actually tighten up the weave of a loosely woven sweater.
Things You'll Need
- Clothes washer
- Alkaline-free shampoo
- Hair conditioner
How to Shrink a Silk Sweater
Machine wash the sweater on the delicate setting in warm water. Silk fiber is much like human hair, so use an alkaline-free shampoo to "remove oil and revitalize your silk." Avoid shampoos with waxy or oily ingredients because these could stain your silk.
Instead of fabric softener, which can stain silk, use a good hair conditioner in the rinse cycle to prevent static cling.
Roll up the sweater tightly in the towel to remove any excess moisture. This will prevent the strain that wringing would put on silk.
Lay flat to dry and iron on a cool setting, if needed.
Tips & Warnings
- If hoping for dramatic results, you may need to consider buying a smaller size because it's not the silk itself, but the weave that shrinks.
How to Shrink Clothing
Shrinking clothes depends on the fibers involved. But if your wool pants are too long and your cotton t-shirt fits to loosely,...
How to Shrink Cotton Sweaters
Shrinking is usually something most people seek to avoid, but for people looking to create a tight, form-fitting look, sometimes buying a...
How to Shrink a Cashmere Sweater
Cashmere is a beautiful and delicate fabric that requires special care. Re-sizing delicate cashmere clothing can be challenging. The only reliable way...
How to Shrink a Wool Sweater
If you have a wool sweater that's just a little too big, shrinking it on purpose might solve your problem. Shrinking wool...
How Do I Get the Smell Out of a Silk Sweater?
Silk comes is lovely colors and caresses your skin with its soft surface, but laundering silk is often not as simple as...