Before laundering, check your sweater for missing or broken buttons.

How to Dry a Cardigan

by Mimi Bullock

The style flexibility of a cardigan makes it a wardrobe must-have; however, if you rush the drying process during laundering, this essential garment may shrink. Whether wearing this button-up sweater with a sheath dress or a simple tank top and jeans, it should complement your outfit and shape -- not look misshapen or tight. Before you attempt to clean the cardigan, read the care label. If the manufacturer suggests dry cleaning, you should rely on a professional service for the cardigan's care.

1 Fold a white towel in half. Ball up the wet sweater and place it on the folded towel. Gently squeeze the water from the sweater without crinkling or creasing it.

2 Replace the towel with a fresh, dry one -- you do not need to fold the towel in half. Spread the towel on a flat surface. Place the the sweater on the towel, spreading it out to prevent wrinkling.

3 Gently roll the sweater and towel together, starting at the bottom. Do this repeatedly to continue to force the water from the fabric.

4 Lay the sweater on a drying rack or on a piece of mesh fabric. It is essential to dry the garment flat, on a surface that allows air to circulate underneath it to prevent mold from growing.

Items you will need

  • White towels
  • Drying rack
  • Mesh fabric


  • Spin a small sweater in a salad spinner to remove water quickly. You should not use this shortcut if the cardigan has beads or embellishments.
  • Damp iron a cardigan to get a neat pressed look.


  • Wool, including cashmere, sweaters can take days to dry completely.

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Photo Credits

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