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Thread: Machine washing and drying a leather jacket.

  1. #21
    Senior Member comedyzen's Avatar
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    I am pleased about the outcome. The fit is slightly more snug than before and the jacket is clean. Not a significant amount of shrinkage.



    POST-WASH

    Pit-Pit: 20.85" (most noticeable change).
    Top of front collar to bottom: 27" (no change)
    Pit-End of Sleeve: 19.25" (no change, but I did pull on the sleeves while wet).
    Shoulder-Shoulder: 19.10" (slight change)



    Leather got a little wrinkled but I'm not worried. The shine dulled down a bit too. Another change was the collar. Before it was quite buttery, and would flop down if the collar was flipped up and jacket unzipped. Now it will jut up on its own. Overall, the leather got stiffer, but I imagine it will be a quick break in.

    Last edited by comedyzen; 06-02-2011 at 12:52 PM. Reason: forgot to mention

  2. #22

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    That turned out pretty good!

    I tried the same on some older calf jackets and I got the same type of result.

    It definitely makes the leather more matte but I found that using some moisturizer brings some of the softness back.

    Now I want to shrink a Neil Barrett washed buffalo leather that I have. I am a bit on the fence about this one as I quite like the sheen and don't really want to make it more matte. Ideally it would shrink 1 size

  3. #23

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    ok, didn't want to entirely hijack eton's thread, so i'll post it all here. i forgot to take pictures of a lot of this, which is unfortunate. oh well.

    anyway, i have a size large white blistered lamb intarsia jacket that's always been a bit too big one me, so i decided i'd wash it. i did a hot water hand wash last night, let it lay out to dry overnight, and now i've thrown it in the dryer for a few minutes because it wasn't shrinking like i'd wanted. hopefully i didn't just fuck everything up beyond reconciliation.

  4. #24
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    really appreciate all the tips here! I purchased an allesandro del acqua leather from century 21 last year, size 48... normally I'm a 44 but this fit like a slim 48 and it was super cheap so I grabbed it anyway. decided to throw it in the washer / dryer yesterday, since its been bored in my closet and I figured I couldn't resell it for much profit anyway.

    glad I did! fits more like a 44-46 now, and the original sheen is gone, leaving more of a matte, grainy finish. definitely recommend giving your oversized leather(s) a wash.

    note: I live in an apartment building where the washer / dryers have very basic settings (lacking any sort of nuanced preference). so if you're worried about particular settings, I wouldn't give it too much thought...

  5. #25

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    this and etons thread inspired me to finally do something about a leather jacket i haven't worn for ages because it's a size too big

    so far everything looks to have gone better than expected :) some shrinkage, a duller (nicer) color and some of the "crumpled" treatment on the jacket has evened out which is good because I wasn't that crazy about it in the first place.
    Suede is too Gucci.

  6. #26

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    Julius leather jackets can never be washed! I tried washing my black rider and it turned out in ruins.

  7. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by the breaks View Post
    this and etons thread inspired me to finally do something about a leather jacket i haven't worn for ages because it's a size too big

    so far everything looks to have gone better than expected :) some shrinkage, a duller (nicer) color and some of the "crumpled" treatment on the jacket has evened out which is good because I wasn't that crazy about it in the first place.
    nice one buddy - same process as me?

    before and after pics?
    you can't polish a turd, but you can roll it in glitter...

  8. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wiggles View Post
    hopefully i didn't just fuck everything up beyond reconciliation.
    and the conclusion to the story is?
    you can't polish a turd, but you can roll it in glitter...

  9. #29

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    The real question here is, why do so many people have very expensive leather jackets that are too big for them?

  10. #30

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    Quote Originally Posted by casem83 View Post
    The real question here is, why do so many people have very expensive leather jackets that are too big for them?
    Forgot to take pics in all the excitement


    Quote Originally Posted by casem83 View Post
    The real question here is, why do so many people have very expensive leather jackets that are too big for them?
    It's called losing weight.
    Suede is too Gucci.

  11. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by eton97 View Post
    and the conclusion to the story is?
    ah yes - had to leave you in suspense for a little. the conclusion was that i'm not as big a fool as i thought i was! the jacket came out great! it shrank a solid amount (not as much as i'd like, but it's a good size now so i'll actually wear it). i was really surprised it kept the softness after everything - the leather never got hard at all, and the processing (blistering) wasn't affected at all. i'll post measurements/pics to compare in a little.

    extremely happy i did it - just like you said, it's like finding 2.5 grand in my dryer.

  12. #32

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    Wiggled. Chuffed for you buddy. It's a great feeling to bring an expensive jacket back to life. Maybe the 60 degree machine wahni did had the realmimpact on shrinkage. I think It shrank a whole size down.

    The breaks. Same reason as you. Lost a bit of weight and been shifting some of the bigger sized pants I own. Just wasn't willing to sell the fencing for a eur1500 loss. And bloody glad I didn't.

    Nice one boyz.
    you can't polish a turd, but you can roll it in glitter...

  13. #33

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    I finally did my NB buffalo and it turned out perfectly. Shrunk it about 1 size. It all went down proportionally as well.

    The last two jackets I threw in the wash lost a lot of the sheen. I conditioned them afterward but they are still quite a bit more matte.

    For the NB I flipped it inside out, ran it under hot water until it was soaked, threw it into a pillow case and tied it up. Threw it in the dryer on max until it was dry.

    It lost a little bit of the shininess, but not too much which is what I wanted.

  14. #34

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    thanks, eton! without you i'd still be aggravated - helping the masses one thread at a time. also wanted to second eton and the breaks, bought it a while back and lost enough weight to make it 2 sizes too big. it's still a little larger than i'd like, but it's small enough to wear and not feel like a fool.

    just threw my other leather - "darkness" calf stooges, size m - into the dryer after doing a hot water hand wash. i noticed the leather took on the most beautiful color and texture when it was soaking in the tub. this great grey/eggplant color - just gorgeous. interested to see what color(s) it is when it's done. feeling much less stressed this time through, much more excited.

    edit: i also expected this jacket to bleed more dye, since it's blackish and all. oddly enough it just turned the water in the rub a very, very slight yellow. that mean anything to anyone? maybe it's just sweaty from wear haha

  15. #35
    Senior Member comedyzen's Avatar
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    I realized I mentioned, but didn't stress the fact that the washer I used was a front loader....which means there is no center spool that churns the clothes like top loading models. I assume all others in this thread did the same? Wouldn't want to risk tearing or excessive wrinkling of the leather via top loader.

  16. #36

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    yea front loader here
    Suede is too Gucci.

  17. #37

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    Front loader
    you can't polish a turd, but you can roll it in glitter...

  18. #38

  19. #39

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    Yes front loader as well. Miele to be exact. It has a lot of settings but I had it at:

    Wash- normal/hot/high spin
    Dry- sturdy/very dry

    Didn't use any soap during the wash cycle. I tried to put other soft items like towels in with the dry cycle to absorb impact. I had the jacket in a pillow case tied up which prevented the hardware from hitting the machine too much.

    The weight and impact sometimes caused the machine to make a warning stop

  20. #40

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    i have a toploader, but i don't think you actually have to machine wash your leather. i just throw mine in a bathtub of hot (and i mean hot) water, then squeeze out as much water as possible, and then throw it into the dryer. works well for me and causes less anxiety.

    also an update on my stooges: came out fantastic. was a size m, now it's definitely a size s, bordering on xs. perfect. wavy zips and all. only downside was that an old tear i had fixed opened back up - easy fix though, brought it back in and they're repairing it for no charge. can't wait to get it back in a few days.

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