As the rule of thumb goes, when it’s too warm to wear your furs, it’s time to store them safely away until next season. Your options? Have them professionally stored at a furrier or stash ’em away at home. Before you decide which route to take, take a minute to evaluate the condition and age of the pieces you are considering storing. Furs older than 20 years are generally not worth storing professionally. (That said, some furs, like mink, age really well. Talk to a pro if you’re on the fence!) If your furs are all 20-30 years old, keep on loving them and skip right to “Tips For Home Storage.”
Option #1: Store your furs at a professional furrier.
Pros: A good furrier will have a storage facility that’s kept at a stable 40 degrees and around 55 percent humidity…conditions proven to extend the life of your fur. Your garments will also be safe from moths and other vermin. Another bonus? When a furrier stores your garments, they can also clean your fur, which boosts its life expectancy, or make any necessary repairs like fixing a ripped lining or replacing a missing button or hook.
Cons: It’s not cheap. At the L.A. Rockler Fur Company in Minneapolis, storage runs $40 per garment or $75 for professional cleaning and storage. (This cost does however, include home pick-up and drop-off. Win!)
Option #2: Store your furs at home.
Pros: It’s free and convenient.
Cons: Maintaining perfect conditions for storing fur at home is nearly impossible, and you run the risk of moth damage and premature aging.
Tips For Home Storage
-Store your furs away from direct sunlight, in a place that isn’t damp (like a basement). A spare bedroom closet is a good choice, as long as your rooms aren’t kept too hot.
-Hang your furs on quality hangers, making sure there’s plenty of space or breathing room in between them. You don’t want to crush or smush the fur!
-Cover them with clean cotton sheets or cotton garment bags. DO NOT use plastic garment bags to store fur—it needs to breathe!
One more tip!
-If you decide to store your furs with a professional, ask to see where they’ll be kept. (God forbid they charge you an arm and a leg to stuff them in a back room!)
What am I doing? Since most of my fur pieces are vintage and/or thrifted, the majority of them will stay at home with me this summer, in a closet, covered in sheets. I do have two inherited pieces that are sentimentally important, and those are going into professional storage. Any investment I can make to keep wearing them longer is well worth it to me!
***A big thank you goes to Rockler‘s General Manager Wally Hennessy for answering my many questions!***