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How to thrift, part 1

Know your fit and know what can be successfully altered. Carpe item. In other words, grab it when you find it. Time your visits to take advantage of thrift store stocking schedules. Look for damage. Hold it up to natural light and check for spots, holes and stains. Then try it on to make triple sure it fits. We can remove musty smells and wrinkles, and fine-tune the fit to make your new find an old favorite.

Happy Fourth of July.

In the words of Harry S. Truman, “America was built on courage, on imagination and an unbeatable determination.”  Today we celebrate the courage, imagination and determination that has made this a great country. We’re with our families today, celebrating our nation’s freedom, liberty and blessings. Happy Fourth!

Summer wedding tips for men.

Women have it easy with a simple non-white dress. In summer, a man’s traditional dark suit can be too warm, somber and predictable. For a city wedding, choose a lightweight suit in gray, blue or a subtle pattern. Style it up with a pastel Oxford or poplin shirt. In the country, blazers and sport coats reign, paired with well-cut chinos. Seaside or resort? A tailored white shirt, colored chinos and a light-colored linen blazer. Keep everything understated and appropriate for the venue. And always be ready with a clever toast.

Lasting memories.

Preserving treasured garments is a specialty that allows sharing today’s moment with tomorrow. We carefully remove stains, repair damage, clean and archivally package wedding gowns, veils, even gloves. In an easy-to-store package, your memento is safe for the future. And we go beyond bridal, with christening gowns, special event garb, uniforms and textiles. When you want it to last for generations, start with our preservation service. It’s the best way we know to save the happiness forward.

Uncode the invitation.

Your clue to choosing the right garb is sometimes confusing. Here’s a quick guide. Black tie is formal wear, tuxedos and cocktail or evening dresses. Black tie optional allows a dark suit. Resort formal is warmweather code for bright and lightweight clothes. For semi or business formal, wear a cocktail dress or dressy suit that would be appropriate in the board room. Cocktail attire is short, elegant dresses and dark suits. The little black dress is perfect. Dressy casual is trousers and a sportcoat for him, a dressy pants look for her. Casual includes jeans, tshirts and sneakers. Got it? You’ll always have more fun wearing the right outfit (and we’ve seen every variation including red sneakers and white tie).

Cleaning up down.

Before you store that down vest or comforter, make sure it’s perfectly clean. Small items can be washed in a front-loading machine, on the permanent press cycle, using a detergent that’s safe for down. If the item is really soiled, stop the machine midway and let everything soak for an hour. To make sure you’ve removed every bit of cleanser, run an extra wash cycle with water only. Use low heat and lots of time for drying. Add a few new white tennis balls to the dryer to break up clumps and restore fluffy loft to the down. Or bring your down to us. Our experts use specialized cleaners and commercial-size machines for perfect results.

The secrets of men’s underwear.

Ten percent of men have underwear in the drawer that’s at least ten years old, have designated a “lucky” pair or wear the same underpants up to four days in row! 35% have their partner or mother buy their shorts. 65% wear different underwear for sports and 30% admit underwear has caused a wedgie. What do men wear? 43% boxers, 32% briefs, 19% super-briefs and 5% go commando. Men’s underwear is a booming business that’s gone well beyond the classic whitey tighties. Bright colors, technical fabrics and graphic patterns are popular.  No matter what the trend, 91% of men look for comfort and good fit.

Summer housecleaning tips.

Summertime cleaning will be fast and easy with these tips from Real Simple. Grind vinegar ice cubes to freshen a musky garbage disposal. Use wadded up aluminum foil and a drop of detergent to scour off baked-on food. When pet hair is a problem, grab a rubber glove, dampen slightly and run over the mess. The hairs will cling to the glove, not the upholstery. Dingy cutting board? Slice a lemon in half and rub juice over the stains, let stand for 20 minutes and rinse for a lemony-fresh surface. Household bedding and linens piling up? Our professional laundry to the rescue.

Dress the table.

Let our linens department help put the finishing touches on your tablecloth and napkins. Nothing’s as nice as professional pressing – and our experts can remove most stains, even on delicate lace and linen. Bring your holiday linens in now and they’ll be clean and crisp for your Thanksgiving festivities next week.

Between cleanings.

A few simple steps can save a trip and add at least another wear to your dressy clothes. After wearing, hang the garment on a sturdy wooden hanger, remove pocket contents, belts or accessories, then give jackets, skirts or pants a thorough brushing to remove lint, dust and surface grime. Ease out wrinkles with a steamer or a hang near the shower. Let the garment air overnight before storing.