Hello NimNim fam! We hope you’re all enjoying this fall season and staying safe– if you’re in the Boston area like us, maybe you saw some snow recently too! As winter approaches and we start thinking about bundling up, we decided this would be a great time to talk about different dry cleaning options, as a lot of sweaters and other outfits for the winter require dry cleaning as opposed to a regular wash. As you might know, here at NimNim, we’re passionate about partnering up with local businesses and supporting the community. We service our dry cleaning orders through Carter’s Cleaners over in Everett, Massachusetts. Carter’s takes their dry-cleaning process very seriously and we were so happy to have the opportunity to chat with them and get some information about some of the big questions in dry cleaning. We’ll go over the dry cleaning process, different types of dry cleaning, and whether hand pressing or machine pressing is a better fit or your dress shirts. However, no matter which option you choose, know you can rely on Carter’s for the best quality and service.

What is the initial process for inspecting garments?

We review every shirt by first inspecting for stains. All buttons are opened and pockets are checked. The shirts are then cleaned depending on the type of fabric, design, and care instruction label on the shirt. It is important to note that the majority of shirts we receive are laundered and machined press.

Caring your button down shirts

What makes dry cleaning different from doing laundry regularly?

Dry cleaning differs from regular washing because shirts enter and leave the machine dry. We use only safe, environmentally-friendly, green cleaning agents instead of water. We also have special stain removal products and stain-testing methods to remove even the toughest stains.

When would dry cleaning be a better option than regular laundry?

Dry cleaning shirts help to preserve colors, remove stains that water cannot such as oils and grease, helps prevent shrinkage, and preserves the texture and finish of fabrics. However, dry cleaning takes more work. A dry cleaned shirt, for example, is hand-pressed on a utility press with a steam iron which requires substantially more time and labor. If you’ve ever pressed a shirt yourself, you will know!


Cloths pressing at NimNim Laundry

What is the machine press process like? 

It is important to note that this only applies to button-down dress shirts, as other shirts usually don’t fit on the machine press! Laundered shirts are placed into an oversized commercial washer using top of the line biodegradable detergents. We also include degreasing agents during the wash program along with a liquid conditioner during the final rinse cycle. The shirts are then removed wet from the washer and put onto our state-of-the-art machine pressing equipment designed for mid-weight cotton dress shirts between size 15-18 with standard buttons which automatically presses the shirts to dryness.


automatic cloths pressing machine

When would hand pressing be a better option than machine pressing?

There are several reasons why a shirt would be hand-pressed versus using the automated process. Even though most button-down dress shirts can fit onto the machine press, hand pressing may be the ideal choice for other reasons besides size issues. Shirts with unique and/or fragile buttons, designer shirts with unique embroidery, textured shirts, and dark shirts which could develop a shine on the cuff and collar are all ideal candidates for hand pressing because it is more gentle. Materials like linen, silk, polyester, and spandex shirts with a lightweight fabric are at risk of being flattened and/or losing their texture after the automated process. Generally, delicate and intricate shirts, such as garments with beading, sequins, ruffles or other embellishments may be better off hand-pressed. Additionally, fitted slim designs and shirts that are too big or too small to fit onto our automated pressing machine would be hand pressed. The bottom line is, if you’re concerned that the automated process might be too hard on your garments, hand pressing is a viable option!

Wearing a shirt image

Is there any post-inspection process for dress shirts?

After all shirts are cleaned and pressed, they go through a detailed quality inspection to check for any broken or missing buttons, which are then replaced by our seamstress at no additional cost.

Thank you so much to Carter’s for your valuable advice! And to the NimNim fam, stay warm as it gets colder outside! Next time you’re looking to get a fancy sweater or other garment dry cleaned, check out Carter’s!


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