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knitted dresses - shrink or stretch?

(10 Posts)
cheesebaby Tue 27-Oct-09 19:10:04

As the title says - with (careful hand) washing, can one expect wool knit dresses to get tighter or to 'relax'?

bigTillyMint Tue 27-Oct-09 19:57:48

I would say stretch (unless it's wool and you shove it in with a normal wash by accident blush), but it depends on the quality of the knit, I guess?

cheesebaby Tue 27-Oct-09 21:25:50

Background is a couple of White Stuff dresses I have bought - I am apparently a size 11 hmm, and have been getting size 10s as they look just that bit better than the 12s. But it occured to me I have no idea how they'll wash, and maybe there's a reason WS knits seem on the large size compared to their non-knits (in which I'm better in 12s) ... I hope I don't end up with too-small frocks after the 1st wash, is all! I'm asking now as I have just recieved an order with a 10 and a 12 in the same dress, and both look good; I prefer the 10, but don't know how much shrink is designed into them?!

Hope some of that made sense... blush

bishboschone Tue 27-Oct-09 21:52:57

You are supposed to expect about a 5% shrinkage on all items when washed. Wool can stretch if washed wrong though.not sure that helps you really.

bigTillyMint Wed 28-Oct-09 07:31:37

Is that a 5% shrinkage on everything? I'm sure that doesn't happen with my clothes (unless I get 5% thinner after I wash something new, LOL!)

bishboschone Wed 28-Oct-09 08:46:18

thats what the experts say after the first wash..well I think its on average 3-7%.

cheesebaby Wed 28-Oct-09 20:51:31

Hmmm, thanks folks!

Anyone else got a more definitive answer?

hmm wink

ThisPhantomPlopsPumpkins Wed 28-Oct-09 21:41:09

Well I have a couple of knitted dresses that I shove in the washing machine on a 30 degree wash and then tumble dry and they look exactly the same as they did when new, if they've done anything they've shrunk, but not noticeably.

Buntytea Wed 28-Oct-09 21:50:26

Cooler / hand wash = stretch

Warmer wash / machine wash = shrink

Depends which way you want to go!

Also, if you lie the dress flat on a worksurface to dry to shouldn't get too much longer. Otherwise all the water in the wool drops to the bottom and pulls the hem with it as the garment drys.

I have done this quite successfully (on purpose!) with a knitted dress as it was just that bit too short!

HTH smile

cheesebaby Wed 28-Oct-09 22:50:04

Cool, thanks!

On the basis that I'll prob use a machine wool wash, which is v. gentle, I think I'll go for the smaller size and try and keep my dinner off it not let the baby puke on it too much!

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