How to store your caps without damaging the shape
Do you make these cap storage mistakes?
Do you line your caps up with military precision or are you a ‘chuck it behind the sofa’ cap wearer?
Importantly, do you commit one of the two cap storing sins which could be damaging your collection and costing you money?
Sin #1 – Not having a designated place to keep your cap
Where did I put it again!?
Are you tired of reaching for your cap to find it’s a) not were your think or b) bent and dusty?
Having a designated spot for your caps may seem like a chore. However, adding just one extra step to your routine can keep your caps looking their best, which ultimately saves you money in replacement costs.
If you stash your caps in no place in particular, it’s a sure way to losing or damaging your cap. I’m not judging, but the fact that you’re still here, reading this, shows me you’re searching for a better way.
Imagine you just stepped in your house, hung up your jacket and are about to sling your cap onto the hook next to your jacket. Woah! Let's pause right there. Unless you want to ruin the shape of your cap, back away slowly from the hook....
Sin #2 - Hanging your cap on a hook
Back way from that hook!
I get literal chills each time I see a cap hung on hooks or clips. The first big cap collection I restored belonged to my friend Chris. He loved his caps and proudly displayed them on his wall. Unfortunately, the wall hooks and clips he used caused shape damage to most of his collection.
Hooks and even pegs are the enemy! The pointed hooks apply too much uneven downward pressure. Over time, this causes your cap to droop down, ultimately stretching it out of shape. In fitted caps, this is especially noticeable.
If you made this mistake, don’t despair. Is your cap misshapen? Depending how deep the crease is, you may be able to sort it using steam. Please don’t try to steam your cap unless you know what you’re doing, I’ll cover this in another blog post soon.
Even worse than hooks, the dreaded clip. Never clip anything onto your cap. Not a clothespin, not a bag clip, nothing that constricts the fabric.
Clips leave behind an imprint which distorts the shape, if attached onto the fold of your cap; that fold line will likely remain. Not only that, if the cap is hung in a room with sunlight, the fabric covered by the clip will remain bright while the rest of the cap becomes faded.
The best method to clean your caps (if you absolutely have to) is to gently blot the stain with a clean cloth. Get a step-by-step walk through of the most effective, least likely to damage method for spot cleaning in my in-depth guide to stains.
Prevention is better than a cure
If you search for cap storage on the internet, a slew of options appear. Careful! Some of these storage solutions use clips or hooks.
This applies to some DIY solutions from sites like Pinterest. They look super creative, and I’m sure would make a great feature on your wall, but if there is a single hook or a clip in sight — you’re not doing your cap any favors. Here are a few effective, safe ideas for how to store your caps.
How to display & store your caps whilst protecting the shape
1. Retail cap stands
If you’re able to get your hands on a retail cap stand or wooden cap forms, stock up since these are the perfect way to store your cap safely.
2. Cap forms
A great place to find these are Ebay or local vintage shops. They come in various head sizes, which makes it a great option to keep your cap the right size for your head.
3. Hanging fabric storage racks
While I don’t personally own one, I’ve heard good things about the New Era foldable cloth cap storage rack (ouch, what a mouthful!). IKEA also sells these.
4. Two words: Hat Tac!
These were designed by people who actually wear and care about caps. I had to support and order one. I am really impressed with how these maintain the shape of the cap whilst hanging. Great job guys! Check out their site here.
5. Storage Boxes
The best drawer units for caps are made of fabric or plastic. Avoid cardboard or wood, they may contain chemicals which could transfer onto your cap and mess with the colour.
For an in depth review of various storage options check out this video from our friends over at View From The Vault.
Once you’ve chosen the best way for you to store your caps, keep them out of direct sunlight. My blog post on 'How to protect your caps against colour fade' will help you navigate this minefield!
Once you’ve sorted the ultimate spot for your cap to live after you step through the door, use this next tip to ensure your cap only leaves your house looking on point:
Keep a cap brush next to where you store your caps.
That’s it! Simple, right? Keeping your trusty brush right next to your caps acts as a reminder for you to actually brush them!
Regularly brushing your cap makes a huge impact on keeping it looking fresh. In fact, brush your cap before and after each use, paying particular attention to the sweatband and brim. By keeping your caps free from dust, you won’t have to clean them as often.