Hang in There
At Bryn Keith, we spend significant time talking to our clients not only about the clothes we craft for them, we also share the right ways to best take care of the garments, not just the ones we hand-craft. While we talk about the frequency of cleaning for shirts or infrequency for cleaning suits, little time is spent talking about the time between cleaning and wearing… closet time.
Hangers are as important to your clothes as your cleaning approach. Choosing the wrong hanger for the job is the equivalent of choosing a ’70 Volkswagen Beetle to drag race a ’97 Mercedes SL500. Sure they both are cars, 4-wheels, rear-wheel drive, etc. yet there is no real comparison.
Great for making a make-shift basketball hoop, when your mom confiscates your Nerf hoop— because the lights are flickering from the dunk-contest you and your friends have entered- ala Jordan, Dominique, and Vince Carter in their primes. (Note: She took the ball too, though never considered the multi-purpose use of gym socks. We’ll talk about socks in a later post.) After a few days, wire hangers leave “poke” marks on anything with a sleeve, shape collars perfectly for anyone with a flat neck, and are likely to lose shape if you hang anything an ounce heavier than it is designed.
Plastic hangers hold heavier garb than their wire counterparts and the rounded ends minimize the shoulder poke that wire hangers produce. Plastic hangers tend to be a little bit bulkier than wire ones and this bulk aids in bearing the weight of heavier clothes. Depending on the weight and size of clothes vs. these hangers, overtime the clothes may win resulting in a deformed hanger which is as useful as a garden shovel in an avalanche. Overall, plastic hangers are a good option as they come in various sizes, styles and colors. They are better for clothes, in comparison to wire hangers, and costs are reasonable.
The holy grail of hangers is designed for everything in your closet. Shirts, suits, coats, dresses even hefty overcoats have a firm place on wooden hangers. No more shoulder pokes, gone are the days of the square necks; we’ve seen wooden hangers that accommodate size 60 suits. For all that is noteworthy wooden hangers do have some hang-ups (sorry, couldn’t help it). First, while most large retailers sell these hangers in volume for a good price, they are more expensive than plastic ones and the wire hangers that dry cleaners dispense. Second, wooden hangers tend to take up a bit more real estate in closets both because of their heft and in some cases contoured shape. Last, for the environmentally conscious, if the day ever comes that a wooden hanger breaks, these hangers are not recyclable and either makes their way into a fire place, sans hook, or the trash.
In the end, the right hanger for you depends on many factors- clothing style/ size/ weight, space restrictions (or lack of), personal taste, obligation to Mother Nature, favorite color, etc. Whatever the case, clothes are an investment; the better you treat them, the better they show the world how to treat you. My home is full of plastic and wooden varieties… and a Nerf hoop- whenever the opportunity arises that my 3 year old questions Daddy’s ability to sky walk!