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CELEBRATE EARTH DAY

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I know lately you’ve been hearing a lot about Earth Day.  Earth Day is tomorrow, April 22nd.  If you’re not familiar with Earth Day I’ll fill you in…

Earth Day is a day to promote awareness and appreciation for the Earth’s environment.  It was founded by U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson (D-Wisconsin) as an environmental teach-in in 1970 and is celebrated in many countries around the world every year.

At Koalaty Cleaners we use an environmentally friendly cleaning process and we don’t use “perc”, which is a very toxic chemical used in the dry cleaning industry.  We also recycle our plastic dry cleaning bags and metal hangers.  You can help with this effort by bringing in your bags and hangers along with your laundry/dry cleaning and we’ll take care of the rest!

Other ways you can protect the environment and reduce your carbon footprint are:

  • Participate in your community’s local recycling program, i.e., aluminum cans, glass bottles, plastic containers and paper items.
  • Many cities have a recycling program for “organic” materials such as your grass clippings and tree branches, etc.  The city will collect these items and turn them into compost and mulch, which you can in turn pick up from the city and use in your garden and flower beds.
  • Adjust your washing machine’s water level to the appropriate size load; don’t set on high, when you only have 4 or 5 items in the washer
  • Use environmentally friendly laundry detergents
  • Purchase clothing made from natural fibers such as bamboo, cotton and even hemp.
  • Start your own compost program at home
  • Turn off lights and electronic equipments when not in use
  • Consolidate trips when running errands, thus cutting back on your gasoline consumption
  • Park your car and ride your bicycle, walk, or ride public transportation

Celebrate Earth Day by consciously doing something “environmentally friendly”!  Whatever you choose to do, know that every little bit helps to preserve the Earth.  Whether you do a little or a lot, it all helps!

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SUIT UP

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Guys, it’s that time of year.  Fall is here…time to get out the fall wardrobe.  You’ve gone to the closet and pulled out a few suits.  They look a little out of date, a little worn, and oh, maybe are a little snug.  You find yourself in need of a new suit or two.  Most men dread the process of picking out clothes, and a suit is the worst!

Going to buy a suit is a whipping for some because they have no idea what style looks best, what color to buy, cuff or not, etc.  A suit is an investment in your wardrobe and you want to get one that fits well, hangs well on you and makes you look like a million bucks!

Below are some great tips to keep in mind when shopping for your next suit:

Pick a classic style – not a trendy style; this way you’ll be able to wear the suit for several years and it won’t go out of style or look dated.

  • Consider the “cut” of the suit.  There are 3 basic cuts:
    • American cut – this is the industry standard, middle of the road cut.  This is the most popular cut for a man’s suit.
    • Full cut – this is a great suit for a fuller figured build.  It hangs straight down and does not taper at the waist, thus giving more room at the waist.  It generally has 2 vents.
    • European cut – This is the cut of suit you want if you are a trim, fit guy.  It tapers at the waist for a trim, fit look.
    • Your jacket should fit well.
      • The collar should lay flat in the back, across your neck without puckering or pulling.
      • The lapel notches should lay flat on your chest and not buckle or bulge out.
      • The sleeves should end at the point where your hand meets your wrist, allowing ¼” of your shirt sleeve to show.
      • Be sure the jacket is comfortable by stretching your arms out straight in front of you.  Sit in a chair and bring your arms up as though you might be resting your arms on your desk or writing.  You don’t want the jacket to bind you.
      • Vents – there are either none, one or two.  Any are OK; however, the men with a more rounded backside should select two vents.
      • Pants should not fit tightly.
      • Cuffs make the pants hang nicely, and should be reserved for taller men.  The cuff should be a standard 1”.
      • Pleats are excellent for fuller figured men.
      • In order to cut the perfect fit, your suit may need to be altered, and your pants may need to be hemmed.  Many department stores have alterations departments, as do many professional dry cleaners.

Accessorizing your suit is important as well, pulling your look together.

  • Your belt should match your shoes.  Select leather shoes with leather soles.
  • Your socks should match your pants and should be “dress” socks, not athletic socks.
  • Shirts – select white dress shirts or plain light blue.  Try to avoid patterned or striped shirts.
  • Ties – this is a place to add a pop of color or a little more “style” to your suit.  You should select a tie that matches your shirt.  If you’ve got a black suit and white shirt, don’t be afraid to add a red tie with a white and black pattern.
  • By changing your ties and shirts out, you can wear the same suit a couple of times each week, but give it a fresh look by changing out the accessories.

Caring for your suit is easy.

  • Never put it in a washing machine or dryer at home.
  • Always take it to a professional dry cleaners for proper cleaning and pressing.  There’s nothing worse than a wrinkled suit!

It’s been said many times before, clothes make the man.  By selecting the proper cut of suit, having a great fitting suit, and proper cleaning/pressing of your garments, you’ll look and feel like a million bucks!

Written by koalatycleaners

November 16, 2010 at 2:19 pm

WHEN THE SEASONS CHANGE – HOW TO STORE YOUR CLOTHING

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It’s time to pack away the summer clothing and roll out your fall wardrobe.  When doing so, you should carefully store your clothing to ensure that it will be in good shape for next Spring and Sumer.

Here are a few tips to keep in mind when storing your clothing:

  1. Always clean your clothing before storing it.  Stained clothing is harder to clean the longer the stain remains, and stains also attract insects that will destroy your clothing.
  2. Store your clothing in a breathable container such as a rattan trunk.  This will allow air to circulate.
  3. Never store clothing in hot attics or cold basements.  Clothing is best stored in a dark, well ventilated, temperature controlled closet.
  4. If using mothballs in a storage area, be sure to put them in a white sock so they do not directly touch the clothing.
  5. Never store clothing in plastic or vinyl clothing bags.  Instead, cover the garments with a white cotton sheet or white muslin.
  6. When hanging leather or suede garments, use a sturdy wooden hanger in order to preserve the shape of the coat or jacket.
  7. Rayon, knitted and silk fabrics should be stored flat, with layers of tissue between each garment.  If you must hang them, pad well with tissue.
  8. Linen clothing should be rolled in order to keep the fabric from becoming permanently creased.
  9. Fur garments should be stored in a cool, dry place and covered with a white cloth (as mentioned above).  However, cold storage especially for furs is best.
  10. Wool clothing should be cleaned prior to storage.  Wrap the item in white tissue and add mothballs to the storage area.

By taking just a few extra minutes while packing your wardrobe away, you can add seasons of wear to your clothing.

Written by koalatycleaners

November 2, 2010 at 11:38 am

DRY CLEANING – IT’S NOT REALLY “DRY”

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Dry cleaning is really a “wet” process used to clean clothing by using a chemical solvent instead of water.

Dry cleaning was discovered in the mid 19th century by Jean Baptiste Jolly when is maid spilled kerosene on his tablecloth.  He noticed that it was cleaner after that.  He soon created a service to clean clothing with this process, and called it dry cleaning.

In those early years, dry cleaners used petroleum based solvents such as gasoline and kerosene.  Due to the flammability issues, an alternate, less flammable solvent was created by William Joseph Stoddard, an Atlanta dry cleaner.

After World War I, chlorinated solvents were used.  These solvents were much less flammable than the earlier solvents and cleaned much better.  By 1935, tetrachloroethylene (perchloroethylene or “perc”) was invented.  This solvent was nonflammable, stable and gentle to clothing.  There has been much controversy in the industry regarding perc, and it is now being replaced with other chemicals and/or methods for cleaning.  Koalaty Cleaners does not use perc and we are environmentally friendly in our cleaning process.

A dry cleaning machine is a combination of a washing machine and clothes dryer in one.  The garments are loaded into the machine and washed with dry cleaning solvent.  During the process, the solvent is collected, filtered, purified and reused.  After the garments are washed, they are rinsed with clean solvent and spun to remove all traces of solvent and cleaning fluids.

Once the spin cycle is completed, the machine starts the drying process.  The air is heated and circulated through the machine, removing any last traces of solvent.  After the drying cycle is complete, a last cycle cools the garments and deodorizes them by passing the air through a filter containing carbon and polymer resins.

Once the garments are cleaned, they are ready for finishing, pressing/ironing.

Dry cleaning can be used on virtually every type of fabric….the label does not have to say “dry clean” only.  However, if you are unsure whether a garment can be dry cleaned, please ask us when you drop off your order.

LEATHER CARE

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Cooler weather is on its way, and with that change in the weather; our wardrobes will be changing too.  Leather coats, skirts, and jackets are an expensive addition to your wardrobe, and if cared for properly, can be worn for many years.

Leather is a tanned and treated animal skin.  These animal skins are porous and need to be treated with care to retain their beauty.  Here are a few tips to help keep your leather clothing in tip top shape:

Treat the garment with a leather protector.  This is an inexpensive way to preserve the item and protect it from drying out.  It also makes it easier to clean.

  • Keep your garment dry.  If your leather garment should become wet, allow the garment to air  dry.
  • Always hang your leather coat or jacket on a wide wooden hanger to retain its shape.
  • Store leather garments in a cool, dry place, away from direct sunlight.
  • Do not store leather garments in plastic bags.  If you want to cover them, use a cotton clothing bag that can breathe, or wrap a cotton sheet around it.
  • If you should have stains on your leather garment, be sure to have it professionally cleaned ASAP.  The stains will be easier to remove.

Black jacket photo – clothingtutor.com

Dress photo –  Hubpages.com

Motorcycle photo – Daily-freepics.net

Written by koalatycleaners

September 21, 2010 at 1:01 pm

KC, OUR KOALA “MASCOT”

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As I mentioned last week at the end of the blog “Koalaty Cleaners – What’s In A Name”, we would talk about our little friend, KC, our koala “mascot”.  If you’ve been into the store, you have no doubt seen him “hanging” around.  The story behind KC is this…….

Prior to opening Koalaty Cleaners three years ago, several of my friends, my wife and both kids were asking if we would have a “mascot” associated with our business.  After some thought I decided that would be a good idea…after all, every successful business has a cool logo, or mascot, or tagline associated with their business…..Koalaty Cleaners deserved that as well!

I had no idea what direction to go, so I placed an ad on Craig’s List to audition for an official mascot.  We received many applications and interviewed many interested candidates.  There was Porky the pig, Bessie the cow, George the giraffe, and also, a close contender, Harry the hippo.  But the one candidate that really stood out was KC, the koala.

KC was full of personality….just arriving from the eastern coast of Australia, he was eager to find a home, meet new people and make friends.  He quickly informed us that he is not a koala “bear”, but simply a koala….and a member of the marsupial family.  He was young and eager to be part of Koalaty Cleaners’ team….we just couldn’t resist his charm, so we promptly anointed him as our official mascot.

Since that time he has been a faithful part of the Koalaty team.  He’s there every day, hanging out on his little pole, and greeting every customer with that cute little face.  He is a happy guy, but recently shared with us that he is lonely and looking for his dream girl.  He said it was hard to meet girls, as no other koalas have come into the cleaners, so he said he signed up for an on-line dating service called ejungledate.com in order to meet Ms. Right.

Let’s all hope that KC meets his dream girl soon.  In the meantime, be sure to say hello to him when you drop off and pick up your dry cleaning and laundry.  And if you have any referrals, I’m sure he would be happy to hear about them.   Check back here and we’ll update you with his dating experience.

BACK TO SCHOOL

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Just another couple of weeks and the kids will be back in school!  Where has the summer gone?

With back to school, comes the clothes shopping.  Clothes are very expensive, and you want to make sure that your child will be able to wear them long enough for you to get your money’s worth out of them.  Something to keep in mind while buying clothes for the kids is their “livability”.  How sturdy are the clothes, will they be easy to clean, and can they be altered or repaired if necessary.

You want to avoid “special care” fabrics for kids if you can.  Cottons, twills, and synthetic fabrics are easier to deal with when it comes to kids.  They are easier to launder and keep looking fresh.

Here are some tips to keep in mind while shopping for clothing that will help you make the grade:

  • Read the care labels for special cleaning instructions.  You may not want to hassle with “hang dry” or “delicate” items for your children.
  • Check all the buttons, sliders, zippers and snaps on the garment prior to purchase to insure that all “moving parts” work properly.
  • Closely inspect the item for frayed or open seams, poor stitching, snags, tears or pilling.  These problems will only become worse with more wear and laundering.
  • Check hems to make sure that they haven’t been torn loose.
  • Check for make-up stains inside the neckline of blouses and jackets, and deodorant stains under the arms.

Of course, the favorite article of clothing for almost anyone at any age is the trusty blue jeans.  They are tough, typically easy to care for, comfortable, and go with anything.  Let me give you a few tips to care for your blue jeans and make them last as long as possible.

  • Don’t forget to pre-treat those grass and mud stains by pre-soaking to remove them prior to washing.
  • Dry clean your jeans – yes, that’s right, have them dry cleaned….it keeps them from fading and shrinking, and they will last twice as long.

By doing a little homework prior to shopping, you’ll be sure to pass the test!

*Don’t forget – Our Koalaty CARES! program donates 3% of your cleaning bill to your favorite school, school organization, or charity.  Be sure to let us know where we can make that donation for you!

Written by koalatycleaners

August 9, 2010 at 5:11 pm