The summer is a great time to wear all your favorite t-shirts, shorts, and sandals. It’s not the best time to wear your leather jackets so it is important you know how to store your leather jackets properly in the summer for the next round of cold weather.
Here is a step-by-step guide on how to store your leather jackets in the summer;
Step 1: Clean Your Leather Jacket
The very first step of storing your leather jacket for the summer season is to clean it. This is important because if you don’t clean your jacket, the dirt and dust will become embedded in the leather and could cause damage over time.
So essentially, cleaning your jacket before storing it removes stains, body oils, sweat, food, and drink stains that can attract insects to the leather jacket.
There are many different ways to clean a leather jacket, but I will recommend using a gentle soap or saddle soap and a soft cloth. Make sure not to get the leather jacket soaking wet when cleaning them.
Be sure to read the instructions on the cleaning product you pick out to make sure it is safe for your particular leather jacket.
To clean your leather jacket for storage during the summer;
- Start by wiping off the jacket with a damp cloth.
- If there are any stains mix a small amount of gentle mild dish soap with water and using a soft brush, work the suds into the stain.
- Rinse off the soap residue with clean water with a damp cloth and follow up using a dry microfiber cloth.
- Leave the leather jacket to completely and thoroughly dry.
- Once it is completely dry, move on to the next step.
Note: If your leather jacket is already clean, simply use a microfiber cloth to remove any loose dust particles or debris from the surface and move on to the next step.
Step 2: Conditioning The Leather Jacket
Once your leather jacket is cleaned, the next step is to condition it.
Leather conditioners help keep the leather jacket soft, supple and help prevent it from drying out and cracking.
There are many different types of leather conditioners available on the market, so be sure to read the instructions carefully before use.
I usually go for leather conditioners that are designed for smooth leather.
However, if you have a suede or nubuck leather jacket I recommend using the conditioner made specifically for those types of materials.
To condition your leather jacket;
- Apply a small amount of leather conditioner to a soft cloth and wipe onto the entire surface of your leather jacket.
- Continue to apply small amounts of leather conditioner to your leather jacket until it is completely covered.
- Massage the conditioner into the surface with a circular motion, working from the outside for about two minutes.
- Finally, wipe off any excess liquid and allow time for your jacket to dry before moving on to step three.
Step 3: Hanging The Leather Jacket
For this part of the process, you will need a wooden hanger that is specifically designed for leather jackets.
You want a good hanger that is nice and sturdy because you don’t want the weight of the leather jacket to cause any sort of sagging over time.
If you do not have a wooden hanger designed for leather jackets, then I recommend using a thickly padded hanger instead.
Do not use wire hangers as they can damage the shape of your leather jacket over time.
Also, you want to make sure the width of the hanger you pick out is wide enough to accommodate the width of your jacket. To hang your leather jacket;
- Slip the shoulder straps of the jacket over the hanger and make sure the jacket is hanging in the correct position.
- Make sure the hanger grips are supporting the weight of your leather jacket, but not causing any sort of indentations.
- It may take a little bit of fiddling to get everything positioned correctly, so be patient with it.
- If you notice that there is an area where the leather has sagged or bent out of shape on one side; carefully push it back into place and hang the jacket up again.
- Once your leather jacket is hanging correctly on the hanger, move on to the next step.
Step 4: Stuffing The Leather Jacket
To keep your leather jacket in great condition during the summer, you need to stuff it.
Leather jackets are very susceptible to wrinkles and creases even when they’re hanged. So it is important to stuff your leather jacket before putting it into storage.
You can do this by fixing acid-free tissue paper around the chest and arm areas of the leather jacket. This will help to keep those areas from becoming wrinkled, creased, or collapsing in.
The acid-free tissue paper also draws out any moisture and neutralizes any smells that would have built up over time. To stuff your leather jacket;
- While your leather jacket is still being hanged, slide in some acid-free tissue papers into the chest and arm areas.
- Make sure to slightly crumple the paper before using them to stuff the leather jacket to help keep it in position throughout the summer.
- Once everything is in place, zip up or button up your leather jacket and then move on to the next step.
Step 5: Bag The Leather Jacket
Now, place the stuffed leather jacket into a garment bag. You want to go for garment bags made of fabric instead of plastic.
This is because garment bags made from fabric are more breathable while still effective at stopping dust, and will also help to protect your leather jacket from any moisture or humidity that may be present in the air.
Make sure to zip up or button up the garment bag before placing it into storage. Make sure to get one garment bag for each leather jacket that you’re storing – especially if you have different colored leather jackets.
Step 6: Storage Locations
Ideally, you want to store your leather jackets in a dark and dry location away from any direct sunlight or humidity.
You should also consider storing your leather jackets in a climate-controlled place, away from direct sunlight, humidity, and heat from radiators.
You can store them in a closet, a spare room, or even in your own wardrobe if you have enough space.
Just make sure that the place is not too humid and does not contain any moisture or condensation from humidity.
Step 7: Retrieve, Air-Out, And/Or Condition
After about 3-6 months, it is time to take the leather jackets out of storage, condition, or air them out. This is very important because if you don’t, the leather will start to crack and become brittle. To air out your leather jacket;
- Remove it from the garment bag and hang it up in a well-ventilated area.
- You can condition it or simply air them out.
- Make sure that there is no sunlight or humidity present when doing this.
- Leave it hanging for about 12-24 hours and proceed to put it back in storage or if the cold weather has arrived, you can start wearing it again.
What Happens If You Do Not Store Your Leather Jacket Properly In Summer?
If you do not store your leather jacket properly in the summer, there are a few things that can happen.
The Leather Jacket Would Have Mold Or Mildew Growth
If your leather jacket is stored in a humid or moist environment, it can cause mold and mildew growth. The moisture will make the leather soft, which will then lead to bacteria and fungus growth.
The leather will also start to rot, and in the worst-case scenario, it will cause the jacket to fall apart.
The Leather Jacket Would Become Dry And Brittle
If you do not store your leather jacket properly in the summer, the leather will start to dry and crack.
This is because of how hot it can get in the summer, which means that the essential oils and moisture that are in the leather will evaporate quickly.
Once the oils and moisture have evaporated, the fibers in the leather will become brittle and eventually break. The jacket may also start to look faded and lose its color.
The Leather Jacket Would Lose Its Shape
Leather jackets are meant to be stored hanged, but if it is not stored properly, it will lose its shape.
The leather jacket could become saggy and the shape will not be as crisp as when you first bought it.
The Leather Jacket Would Start To Smell Bad
If your leather jacket is stored in a humid or moist environment, the bacteria and fungus growth will cause it to start to smell bad.
The smell can become so overpowering that it might be hard to wear the jacket again. This is why it is important to stuff your leather jackets before storing them in a well-ventilated place.
Now that you know how to store leather jackets during the summer; it’s time to put everything into action!
Make sure to follow all the steps to ensure that your leather jacket is in perfect condition when you’re ready to wear it again. I hope this article was helpful and I’ll see you in the next one!