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Hanging a Garment Properly

Certainly, the lion’s share of making a garment is the designing, the fitting and the sewing – but there are always a few little finishing details to take care of, and among those is how to hang the finished item properly.

Some garments are best folded carefully and put in a drawer (something heavily beaded, for instance), and a sturdy padded hanger does the trick in an awful lot of cases, too.

But – there are times when one has to get a little more inventive.  Here are a few solutions:

This beautiful soutache lace top could certainly be put on a hanger, but it’s light and delicate and could easily slip off.  Hanging loops are pretty much out of the question – they’d be visible through the lace – but small snaps do the job.  The sew the socket side snap to the inner shoulder seam of the top (it’s flatter against the body), and sew the ball side snap to a padded hanger.

This linen dress is heavy (it’s got a very full, floor-length skirt), and again, hanging loops wouldn’t help.  Even the kind that are attached under the arm have a way of working their way to the outside of the garment.  So, a small hook and eye do the job.  The eye is attached to the shoulder seam of the gown, and the hook is on a padded hanger.

It can be tricky to hang a strapless dress – there might be ornamentation or a fabric treatment that can’t be smashed with a clip hanger, and if the back is lower than the front, then the edges don’t line up, anyway.

A length of ribbon, its position guided by a couple of thread chains, does the trick.

The ribbon is sewn in place…

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  1. User avater
    MamaEuny | | #1

    Attaching the loops for hanging a skirt in the waistband are a great idea! I have used it a few times. How does one hang a skirt that has no waistband, if the details on the front would be ruined by hanger clips? I was thinking of attaching the hanging loops to the lining. yes or no?

  2. Soucieville | | #2

    For the lace top dress, why not use a padded hanger, with a loop attached to the end of the hanger. Attach the snap to the loop and hanger, not to the dress. All I could think of when you showed the snaps on the dress was how I'd feel them against my skin all the time. The hanger would be dedicated to that dress, but I have many hangers dedicated to one item.

  3. kdeoak | | #3

    Thank you for the great ideas. And what beautiful (and beautifully constructed) garments!

  4. Carolebarrel | | #4

    I have seen small pieces of foam that protect delicate fabric from being ruined by clip hangers (MamaEuny). I have used clothespins padded similarly. Shoulder pads (extras from my stash) also come in handy. I just fold them around the plastic hangers, clip them securely with clothespins underneath and they serve to support and protect a bodice. Just thought you'd like to have a few ideas that might not have occurred using items you have on hand.

  5. smcm | | #5

    There are felted slim line hangers available in stores. I have replaced all my hangers and find they do not take up as much space in the closet and nothing ever slips off, including a very slippery, sleeveless top that was always on the floor of the closet. I love them.

  6. SheMichaels | | #6

    Brilliant solutions. I agree that the snap & hook should be reversed. Loop chain should be on dress.
    Remember, too, that clothes made with sari material & some handicrafts should always be folded flat, as Indians do. The material will stretch out of shape if hung, even when lined.

  7. User avater
    IreneT | | #7

    Thanks you. I would also love to know how to hang trousers properly. Do I hang from the waist or the hems? Do I leave zips open or closed? Or are they best folded over a trouser bar?

  8. needledee | | #8
  9. needledee | | #9

    I hang garments to support the grain of the fabric. I like the bar clamp skirt/slack hangers for tank dresses--fold in thirds and clamp at the waist. The arm holes don't stretch.

  10. JerseyQueen | | #10

    These tips are just fantastic. I work in jersey hence the name - and initially was using padded hangers for the dresses, I found that after a while the jersey would stretch slightly on the shoulder as the garments had dolman sleeves leaving a little nodule, plus the skirt was quite full and heavy. This could be steamed out but you don't want to have to do that before wearing it, and then I found non-slip hangers especially for jersey and they work a treat. Thanks Susan for sharing such brilliant ideas.

  11. wrenfeather | | #11

    I love these suggestions, always looking for better ways to hang garments for myself and my customers.

  12. User avater
    jennyebner | | #12

    Great suggestions and I will use them all. Thanks

  13. marky4 | | #13

    thank you susan i luv these ideas i always hated the way that strapless dress hung forward and got crushed thanks for the tips carnt wait to try them out

  14. snapdragon45 | | #14

    Thank you so much, I live in Durban South Africa, and love all the tips if get. Thank you so much for this wonderful magazine, please let me know about the special offer of the dvd's

    thank you

  15. smockerlady | | #15


    Genius solutions from you as always.
    Thank you for sharing these tips. Immediately used your technique for a cashmere/mohair/wool skirt I have just completed. As the waist has a spiral boned couture facing your techniques for the position of the fabric loops works beautifully.

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