Broomstick Pleats

Q: A customer complained that a broomstick pleated skirt lost its pleats after cleaning. What happened?

A: The general procedure for cleaning any broomstick pleated skirt that is labeled as "Dryclean Only" is to clean it in a net bag to prevent loss of the pleats. As soon as the cycle is completed, the skirt should be removed from the machine and twisted and knotted while still warm. This will help keep the random pleating effect in place. In addition, these garments should not be steamed or pressed. This is especially true for skirts made of silk, rayon, or other natural fibers. These tend to lose their pleated effect more readily than those made from polyester or other thermoplastic synthetic fibers.

Further reading:

For more information see the following bulletins in DLI's Drycleaning Encyclopedia, available with DLI Standard, Gold, Premier, and International memberships. If you can’t access the Drycleaning Encyclopedia, join as a Standard, Gold or Premier member to access DLI’s Drycleaning Encyclopedia, an absolute treasure trove of fabric care information:

  • Fabrics & Fashions No. 436: Broomstick Pleats
  • Technical Operating Information No. 676-A: Pleats
  • Technical Operating Information Focus  No. 5:  How to Handle Various Finishing Problems
  • Textile Analysis Bulletin Service (TABS) No. 485: Opening of Pleat Designs in English & Spanish