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Can I WASH my pair of 100% linen pants?

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
The care label clearly states the pants should be drycleaned but I know I can wash my 100% linen shirts, so why can't 100% linen pants be washed, as well? These pants are unlined, by the way.

I'd probably wash in cold (or lukewarm) water, gentle cycle, and then hang to dry (or perhaps machine dry using the lowest heat setting possible).

What is everyone's thoughts on this?

Thank you.
post #2 of 22
Thread Starter 
I also have two 100% silk shirts whose care labels state "dryclean only" but I've washed both over the years with no damage to the shirts whatsoever.
post #3 of 22
Thread Starter 
post #4 of 22
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SuitMyself View Post

For what it's worth, I washed two pairs of linen pants tonight and I just took them out of the washer right now. I laid them flat and measured the outseam and one pair (which was too long for me by about 1 inch) is now exactly the perfect length for me; the other pair is only about 1/4 inch shorter than it was before washing.

I'm now putting both pairs in the dryer on high heat (yes, I did indeed say HIGH heat) for about 5 minutes just to get out the excess moisture and will be hanging both pairs to dry after that.

I'll post the results afterwards.
post #5 of 22
I tried it and had further shrinkage on the second wash I gave them...
post #6 of 22
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SuitMyself View Post

For what it's worth, I washed two pairs of linen pants tonight and I just took them out of the washer right now. I laid them flat and measured the outseam and one pair (which was too long for me by about 1 inch) is now exactly the perfect length for me; the other pair is only about 1/4 inch shorter than it was before washing.

I'm now putting both pairs in the dryer on high heat (yes, I did indeed say HIGH heat) for about 5 minutes just to get out the excess moisture and will be hanging both pairs to dry after that.

I'll post the results afterwards.



Contrary to what I said earlier, I decided to machine dry both pairs on HIGH heat for about 20 minutes until they were completely dry.

I again measured the outseam on both pairs and the length is now absolutely perfect for me. I figured, right at the beginning as I was making the decision to machine wash them, what'd be the worst that could happen? Since both pairs have cuffs at the bottom, I can always have a tailor lengthen them if they shrink too much in length.

I am extremely happy with how both pairs turned out especially the length which is now perfect for me.

The challenging part was, of course, pressing both pairs perfectly. That took about 10 minutes per pair but in the end, I think I did a pretty good job.

For the record, the waist size did NOT shrink on both pairs when I tried them on after I pressed them.

I am extremely happy with the results, as I've said.

If anyone is thinking of machine washing their linen pants, I would advise, in summary:

-- make sure you use cold water and gentle cycle

-- machine dry the pants (medium or high heat) ONLY if you want to shrink the length; otherwise, either hang them or lay them flat to dry

-- be prepared to do a bit of intense pressing to get them just perfect.

Thank you for reading my posts.
post #7 of 22
I always launder my linen trousers, but you may find them a nightmare to iron the wrinkles out having machine dried them.
post #8 of 22
I have never had linen pants shrink when washed in cold water and hung to dry.

30-40 degrees isn't cold, btw.

If you have any shrinkage at all, you're doing it wrong.
post #9 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by holymadness View Post
I have never had linen pants shrink when washed in cold water and hung to dry. 30-40 degrees isn't cold, btw. If you have any shrinkage at all, you're doing it wrong.
No matter how properly you wash it, Shrinkage can happen, if it was not pre-shrunk and ironed before cutting,
post #10 of 22
The issue is different with trousers than shirts. Trousers have the linen cloth, pocketing/ curtain and different materials that make up the waistband plus any hardware. These will all respond differently to washing and drying. It will take at least 6 washings to get the shrinkage out of the cloth and you may get more after that. If you insist on washing them yourselves, do this before you hem them. Depending on the quality of the linen, some shrink more than others.
post #11 of 22
My experience with cotton/linen blend trousers is that they stretch out with wear, and laundering them (wash & dry) "re-corrects" the fit. Has anyone else noticed this?
post #12 of 22
Especially if you put them in the dryer afterward, on high heat for 70 minutes.
post #13 of 22
I wash mine in cold water and line dry, but they aren't very expensive pants.
post #14 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by holymadness View Post
I have never had linen pants shrink when washed in cold water and hung to dry.

My results exactly. I've even washed my un-lined linen jackets this way and no worries.
I iron while they are still damp. Works fine for me.
post #15 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Man Of Lint View Post
My results exactly. I've even washed my un-lined linen jackets this way and no worries.
I iron while they are still damp. Works fine for me.
I also have success washing my unlined linen jacket. It comes out fine after every wash.
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