Rescue my favorite wool sweaters
December 20, 2015 8:32 AM   Subscribe

I tumble air dried (no heat) my favorite merino wool sweaters in the dryer, and now they have weird little (possibly?) synthetic fibers that want to stay in the weave. Best guess is one of the other sweaters in there had a loose weave that wove itself into the wet wool. We are using a sticky clothing roller to get them out but having a devil of a time removing them. How do we get these out? Pic of the situation here.
posted by lieber hair to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (7 answers total)
You could try a sweater shaver
posted by WesterbergHigh at 8:55 AM on December 20, 2015

I tried a sweater shaver first, and put a hole in one of them accidentally. The wool is too thin.
posted by lieber hair at 9:24 AM on December 20, 2015

Have you tried sticking it in the dryer again, without the offending sweater? If that fails or if you're too worried about shrinkage, tweezers should do the trick.. very slowly.
posted by acidic at 10:13 AM on December 20, 2015 [2 favorites]

Is your roller really sticky? Some brands are better than others. Scotch brand rollers are pretty sticky; Ikea or generic brands are ok, but maybe for this problem you need more glue.
posted by pseudostrabismus at 11:58 AM on December 20, 2015

You should be able to do this with a sweater shaver, but the trick is that you need the area to be stretched out (say over an ironing board, or something similar), so none of the threads of the sweater can be caught up in the shaver. I don't think this is the best option since these are foreign threads - it would be better to get them out entirely than cut them off.
The other thing you can try is a de-pilling comb. Again, you need to stretch the fabric out over something, and be quite careful that you don't catch any loose threads from the sweater.
Reusable lint rollers are generally much stickier than the normal disposable sheet ones. Anything marketed for pet hair is likely to be stronger too.
posted by neatsocks at 1:05 PM on December 20, 2015 [1 favorite]

Cheap hairbrush. Trust me, I'm a fiber professional. ;) (seriously, though, I've been in the industry for over a decade now). Stretching it over a flat surface while you do it will help, as neatsocks recommended. I've found when working with deliberately felted pieces that a cheap plastic-bristled brush will help sort out the surface faster than anything. Sweater shavers aren't the greatest (and anyway, I'd use a brush after a shaver anyway just so the surface wouldn't look weird).
posted by at 6:43 PM on December 20, 2015 [5 favorites], can you show me a picture of the type of hairbrush you're talking about? What should the bristles be made out of? This sounds promising!
posted by lieber hair at 8:20 AM on December 21, 2015

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