How to Care for Hand Knits - Pro-Tip Tuesday

Once you’ve finished your knit project, there are two important steps:

1. Wear it. Accept the compliments and admiration of your friends. You’re awesome.

2. Care for it. 

You know how to do step 1, let's look at step 2.


Knits do not typically need to be washed after every wear, but if you spill food or other organic material on them, wash them right away. It is particularly important to wash your wool items before storing them for the winter in order to avoid moths. Moths are attracted to the dirt on the wool item, not the item itself. So clean woolens will not typically get munched.


  1. Wash in a basin, sink or other container of tepid water filled with a small amount (teaspoon or so) of detergent. An official wool wash, such as Eucalan or Soak, is a great idea, as you do not need to rinse them, therefore avoiding excess handling.

  2. Swish the detergent around with your hand to mix thoroughly. Then place your knit in the soapy water and let it sit for 15 minutes.

  3. Rinse (if necessary). Gently lift your item and squeeze the water out. Lay the knitted item on a bath towel and roll it up. Press it to remove more water.

  4. Dry flat. I use this hanging sweater dryer with 2 layers of mesh, allowing air circulation and space to dry two items.

  5. Be patient. Some items, especially cotton, may take a long time to dry. If necessary, when your item is partially dry, lay on a blocking board or yoga mat and pin out.

Once your item is completely dry, fold it carefully and put it away. If you are storing for the winter, consider packing it in acid free paper.