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Thread: Machine washing and drying a leather jacket.

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  1. #1
    Senior Member comedyzen's Avatar
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    Default Machine washing and drying a leather jacket.

    So I picked up a Rick, reversed lamb, Scuba leather from 07 at a very good price but it came with a god awful smell like some leather treatment gone bad. So I had it pro cleaned and that got rid of 65% of the smell. It was also tagged as an XL and a tad loose on me. So I called Arthur at The Archive and he suggested I machine wash it then run it through the dryer to shrink it (and I hoped it would kick the smell). I had it professionally cleaned for around $70, but the smell still lingered a tad.

    So instead of sending it to cleaners for another round, I rolled the dice and threw it in the washer then dryer....and to my joy, it worked. Smell is out but it shrank a tad too small, the good news is that after some wear, it stretched out to fit. FYI, the leather is suede like and thick.

    So I recently picked up another 07/08 Rick leather and want to do the same thing. But this cost much more and it is hammered lamb that is thinner than the Suba and has treatment on it. But I want to clean it since it is used and wouldn't mind some shrinkage. I came across this:

    http://helloblackbird.blogspot.com/2...-by-peter.html

    And wondered if anyone tried this with a higher grade RO leather?

    If I do machine wash the high collar, I plan on taking pics and measurements but I really do not want to risk ruining this beauty of a jacket. But would love to hear from anyone who has done it.
    Last edited by comedyzen; 04-22-2011 at 11:40 AM.

  2. #2

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    I have no advice, but I'd love to see pics of the jacket you've already washed & dried.

    Frankly, washing it would scare me enough...let alone machine washing it. Drying it in the dryer...eek! Kudos to you for the 'nads.

  3. #3
    Senior Member diorowen's Avatar
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    as said in Blackbird, washing it will actually take away the finishes.

    personally I tried washing leather before, but not with machine washer, and not throwing it in the dryer.
    I handwash it carefully just to remove the dirt. afterward, I just lay it to dry. takes around 1 week to dry, but its ok.
    the result is the same as what you got, shrinkage, and color become dull. :).

    as for your hammered lamb, I don't recommend to throw it to washing machine. I am not sure about what will happen, but imagining the thin leather spinning around in the washing machine. I cant definetely hold my tear. haha.
    moreover the treatment will most likely fade due to the washing machine method.
    so if there is no other option, maybe carefull handwash is a better alternative, while personally I suggest just bring it to leather expert to get it cleaned.
    still trapped in my juvenile state

  4. #4

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    ugh
    im so tempted to do this to my margiela
    but im weary because it is by the far the most expensive piece of clothing i have ever bought and i just got it
    it fits decent as is, but the shoulders are too large and it throws off everything else (i never thought a 44 would be too big!)
    its pretty thick deer leather, but it is already treated and super soft...
    would washing/drying it do the trick?

  5. #5
    Senior Member diorowen's Avatar
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    ^. erm, when I said shrink, its every part of them shrink. so you may can't fit in anymore after you shrink it, if everything else is correct, except the shoulder.

    so I would suggest you to actually try to bring it to tailor first.
    let they see, some of them can actually shorten the width of the shoulder.
    cost more of course, and it didnt guarantee you get the exact stuff you want, because tailoring the shoulder will completely change the jacket silhouette.
    but, just ask them. they may know what you need to do :)
    still trapped in my juvenile state

  6. #6

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    it would be great if it shrunk everywhere by 1 inch!
    is this possible? approximately how much will it shrink from the dryer?

    i dont want to tailor it as im sure it will ruin the fit.

  7. #7
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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...

  8. #8

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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.

  9. #9

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

  10. #10

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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...

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