How to Safely Store and Preserve Suede Shoes and Clothing

Learn proper care and storage methods to maintain delicate suede shoes, clothing and accessories preventing permanent staining, moth damage, shape distortions and fading over time.

February 8, 2024
min read
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Few feelings exist more sumptuous than slipping on buttery suede boots fresh for the season - until a raindrop splashes leaving behind a darkened crater on the plush taupe facade. Harsh weather, dirt and body oils easily mar velvet finished leather seemingly beyond salvation without proper care.

But by understanding suede’s sensitivities, treating surfaces preventatively plus storing items with monitoring in optimal conditions, treasured nap textiles survive pristinely for years enjoying enduring softness countless wears longer.

Why Suede Requires Special Care

Understanding what makes suede so heavenly soft yet temperamental helps inform smarter storage solutions preventing permanent damage from improper handling.

Delicate Textured Surface

Suede constitutes the underside interior skin layer naturally adhered onto hide backings. Since gently buffed retaining a napped texture without heavy chemical tanning, suede remains permeable and quick staining without protective top finish. Dyes only minimally penetrate so liquids alter color instantly.

Traps Water and Oils

The delicate fiber ends latch onto grime tenaciously driving stains deeper below. Without swift removal care, marks become inescapably embedded and oils rancidify leather structure from within. Suede can not withstand complete saturation.

Highly Susceptible to Permanent Staining

Unfortunately the same properties giving suede sensuous soft tactility also increase vulnerability towards0101 irreversible staining if met with liquids or friction damage. The key becomes prevention and prompt treatment during rare liquid encounters before permeability becomes downfall.

With clearer understanding how suede constitution demands greater vigilance, next survey storage readiness...

Checking Items Before Storing

Before sealing away suede pieces for seasonal hibernation, ensure each passes inspection evaluation and preventative treatment steps:

Inspect Soles and Lining

Scan shoe linings and soles for any tearing loose possibly allowing exterior humidity or insects entry damaging heels during off-season downtime. Repair separations with cobbler adhesive beforeCatalog storing.

Brush Thoroughly to Remove Dust

Gently whisk away carpet crumbs, environmental dust accumulation and other debris with a specialty suede massage brush weekly and especially before storage. This lifts embedded particles from imprinting texture permanently over stacked dormancy.

Apply Protective Sprays Before Boxing

Mist suede surfaces with silicone polymer sealants adding limited barrier against moisture and soil transfer consequences without heavily altering coveted plush tactility. Cover overspray flooring to avoid slips! Let dry fully 1-2 hours before packing.

With preliminaries addressed, now delve into footwear storage specifics...

suede shoes different sizes

Storing Suede Shoes

Selecting appropriate containers controls two anti-leather elements: ambient moisture drying out hides over time and closet moths nibbling away nutritious proteins.

Space Conscious Boxes With Heel Dividers

Enclosed yet breathable dropdown lid shoe boxes allow neatly filing away multiple pairs stacked while preventing squashing delicate toe shapes out of form. Integrated heel dividers prevent leather scuffing too.

Individual Shoe Stretchers

Further retain form resilience by fitting paired shoe stretchers inside each before nesting in tissue paper. This stretches leathers gently preventing creasing collapse that cracks upon rewearing when improperly compressed long term.

Cedar Shavings

Line shoebox bottoms with aromatic red cedar wood shavings or panels deterring moths seeking uncovered feast grounds. Just avoid direct cedar contact against suede itself which potentially transfers pigment staining lighter hues over time.

Now onto apparel storage elements shielding precious hides during lengthy neglected phases...

Storing Suede Clothing

Preserve buttery plush jacket interiors and lush scarf sheen this winter by incorporating cedar and vacuum packing into seasonal suede storage strategy:

Cedar Lined Closets

Safeguard all suede apparel year round including fringed purses, cozy lounge pants and cropped jackets by installing aromatic cedar plank panels inside entire closet enclosures. This elegantly yet potently confusing moths during housing hunts keeping eggs off treasured nap fabrics so larvae infestations never start!

Lightweight Garments Bags

Before shelving, button or zip piece into jumbo lightweight white cotton or ripstop nylon garment bags with aeration side vents. This prevents dust and debris soiling while allowing airflow circulation keeping contents fresher year to year.

Cedar Sachets

Include additional cedar protection placing small muslin sachets filled with red cedar wood chips or shavings inside bags before sealing closed. Bonus: enjoy subtle forest essence wafting when unveiling next winter!

Layer with Silica Gel Packets

Toss moisture wicking silica gel desiccant packs on top pooling below closed garment bag zippers to actively pull ambient humidity keeping microenvironments dry as the Nevada desert.

Alongside proactively moth and mildew proofing storage spaces, what about preventing suede distortion?

Maintaining Shape and Color

When remaining tucked away so long shielded from damaging elements, seemingly pristine suede emerges next season with subtle fading cracking from improper storage positioning. Minimize closet casualties through a few adjustments:

Periodically Re-Brush and Reshape

Gently smooth out creases and refluff matted pile by brushing napped grain direction then stuffing pieces with acid free paper. Reshape abdominal crouch on boots or re-form rounded clutch corners softened angularly over time squished together.

Sunlight Fading Prevention

Avoid direct UV light exposure which oxidizes and fades dyes. If hanging jackets between off season wears, keep cloaked in opaque garment bags or shielded behind darker apparel blocking window light bleaching.

Seek Professional Leather Cleaning

Seeking qualified suede and leather conditioning cleaning experts remains well worth the investment for rejuvenating lackluster hues and refreshing supple structure too fragile attempting personally without proper machinery and chemical training knowledge. Luxe items deserve master craftsman handling!

Suede Protectant Sprays

Spritz proprietary suede sealant sprays before returning items into off-season storage or wearing outdoors. Water repellant formulas maintain vibrant dark pigments and withstand light precipitation encounters better. Reapply after professional cleanings strip away old solution buildup.

Proactively addressing shape and appearance between storage stints prevents unpleasant surprises the subsequent season. Lastly, let’s cover ideal wearing strategies combating daily deterioration...

woman wearing suede shoes

Correctly Wearing Suede Items

Even while actively sporting beloved staples before storage, remain vigilant avoiding easily preventable damage incidents through smart precautionary habits:

Avoid Rain and Snow

When unexpectedly caught in precipitation, immediately cease wear pulling up hoods and carefully clutch suede items inward avoiding direct contact with wetness until safely transitioning inside again. Never stomp through puddles or trudge across salty slush!

Waterproof Seasonally

Employ aftermarket waterproofing sprays like Apple Guard Rain & Stain Repellent or Jason Markk formulas building protective barriers making suede footwear cautiously rain friendly. Re-treat after several long wears or before switching back into rotation after months packed away.

Rotate Shoes Regularly

Allowing adequate rest days between repeats wears distributes weight and friction evenly across insoles avoiding premature weak spots wearing holes into frequently stressed zones. This optimizes longevity and retains pillowy cushioning.

Hang Scarves and Jackets on Velvet Hangers

Avoid wiry hooks damaging dainty fringing threads by instead using thick velvet shoulder hangers or padded cloth ribbons for hanging suede garments between off season storage sessions without ripping through.

With mastered preventative care, suede favorites endure delivering heavenly tactile enjoyment for years more than originally expected thanks to careful handling reducing unnecessary damage risks this delicate leather innately courts.

How to Restore Suede

Inevitably, despite your best protective efforts, suede pieces eventually suffer scuffs or discoloration from unforeseen incidents. Before resigning items to the donation pile, attempt restoring using household remedies:

Rub Salt on Stains

Table salt's abrasive crystals lift lingering substances from textured pores better than trying scrubbing alone. Pour directly on stains like wine or mud, gently rub with soft bristled nail brush then wipe away residue with dry cloth sections.

Lift Indentations With Steam

Run iron kinetically 1-2 inches above dented suede, allowing penetrating steam to re-expand flattened fibers without triggering heat risk melting underlying glue laments. Use towel buffer protection.

Dab Hydrogen Peroxide On Dark Stains

Gently sponge lightened round coffee drips or oil smears with cotton balls soaked in effective yet non-bleaching low concentration hydrogen peroxide household formulas. This bubble-lifts stubborn pigmentation without lightening overall hue like fading bleach disaster.

Massage With White Vinegar-Rubbing Alcohol Mix

Combine distilled white vinegar with 99% isopropyl alcohol in 1:1 ratio into spray bottle, shake then mist over soiled or crusty suede. Massage the emulsifying fluid deeply with a suede brush to break down and dissolve debris from within porous leather without saturation damage. Allows slow drying without sticker residue.

With some craftiness reviving suede using ordinary kitchen cabinet staples, treasured pieces survive surprising spills another season keeping favorable houseguest status long after assuming goners. Always start gently when attempting restoration techniques then address professionals for safer approach on cherished items.

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About Wood Blocks

Our mission is to empower you with the knowledge to curate a wardrobe that not only reflects your personal style but also aligns with environmentally friendly practices. From exploring the wonders of natural mothballs and sustainable garment storage to diving deep into DIY solutions and green living, we're here to guide you on a journey towards a more eco-conscious, stylish, and intentional lifestyle.

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