Ensuring safe longterm storage of your leather items, whether it's clothing or furniture, begins with choosing the right type of storage facility. You must also prepare and store the items properly to prevent any damage. The following guide can help.
Storage Unit Tips
Not all storage units are created equally, and even the same facility may offer several different types of units. When it comes to leather goods, your best option is to opt for the climate controlled option. These units are cooled in summer and heated in winter, so they maintain a consistent temperature. They also have humidity control. Although this isn't necessary in dry climates, it's a must in areas with high moisture.
Although not necessary, indoor units are nice if you are worried about moisture getting in from outside. You can also protect outdoor units from this problem by placing pallets on the ground inside the unit to elevate furniture and other items off the floor and above any water that may get into the unit.
A full professional cleaning is a must before storing leather furniture. This removes any food debris, skin oils, and other dirt that could damage the leather or attract pests. Make sure the furniture is completely dry before you store. Mildew and mold is your main concern and both require moisture to grow.
Finally, cover the furniture with a sheet or cloth, but don't use plastic because it can retain moisture. The sheet keeps the dust off and protects the leather. Don't stack anything on the furniture, either. This can cause permanent indentations on the leather upholstery.
Clothing and Small Items
Clothing and small items require similar preparation as furniture. Begin by having the item professionally cleaned, especially if it is a lined item like a jacket. You can usually wash smaller items yourself using leather soap and a leather conditioner. As with furniture, make sure the item is dry before you store it.
It's best to hang leather clothing on thick padded hangers during storage. If you can't hang them, lay them flat and do not fold them. Insert shoe trees in leather shoes and boots to help hold their shape. Place items in cloth clothing or storage bags to protect them. If you must box the items, opt for cardboard instead of plastic bins, since cardboard can breath and is less likely to hold moisture. Much like furniture, avoid placing anything on top of these small items that could damage them.