Aran Sweaters dreaded bobbles

When it comes to knitwear, there's nothing worse than coming to the devastating realisation your favourite jumper has got those . No matter how careful you are washing your cosy knits, the wear and tear of every day life can sometimes be enough to cause those fuzzy little bobbles to form. 

Here's how to fix your bobbly jumpers this season:

A common clothing complaint is bobbling or pilling of knitwear, which can make jumpers look worn and weary.

Pilling is where the textile fibres break up and form little fuzzy bobbles. It is a result of daily wear and will be most noticeable in areas where the garment rubs against your skin (such as under the arms or elbows), or where the knitwear rubs against another layer of fabric (such as under a coat). 

It is usually most visible after washing, as the washing-machine agitation will add to the aggravation of these broken fibres. Both natural and synthetic knitwear is prone to pilling, but it is more common with garments made of looser and soft fibres, such as cashmere and mohair or mixed-fibre blends.

To minimise pilling, wash vulnerable knitwear inside out by hand, using a delicates liquid detergent and only when necessary – over-washing will hasten any damage.To minimise pilling, wash vulnerable knitwear inside out by hand

If washing by machine, choose a delicates cycle that will lessen the agitation of the knitwear in the drum. Avoid using fabric softeners when washing knitwear; these will soften the fibres making them more susceptible to becoming loose and forming a bobble.

Consider also what type of jacket or coat you wear over delicate knits like cashmere – if you wear an unlined coat, for instance, or a rough denim jacket, then this is going to be very abrasive against the soft knit and will hasten the appearance of bobbles.

Top tip: A knitwear de-pilling comb is the best tool for removing bobbles on delicate knits.

Brush your knitwear gently after wear, using a natural bristle brush for clothes – this will smoothen the beginnings of any loose ends while also removing dust and lint, keeping the jumper fresh and lessening the need for washing. A knitwear de-pilling comb is the best tool for removing bobbles on delicate knits. 

Mechanical jumper razors will also trim the bobbles effectively, but take care if using these as you risk damaging the good fibres within jumpers if you are too rough. Brush the jumper with a clothing brush after de-pilling to remove any stray fibres.

Don’t pull on the bobble by hand as you will loosen the fibres further and weaken the yarn