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HELOISE Check pockets before sending clothes out

Thursday, February 24, 2005

Dear Heloise: I am a fan and a faithful reader of your column, and I wanted to send you some advice to pass along to readers. I have worked for several years at the counter of a dry-cleaner/laundry plant. Basically, I am the one who ensures that your clothes get the proper attention and are returned to the rightful owner. Here are some important tips to pass along to readers:
UAlways check all pockets before you drop clothes off. We are very honest people at our location, but some people are not so honest. Daily we find credit cards, cash and personal information that most would not want made public. I have found everything from obscene printed materials to death certificates.
UIf the care tag on your clothing is uncomfortable during wear and you remove it, do not discard it. It might have very important information that affects the method of cleaning we would choose for the particular garment.
UIf you know the sources of stains, be sure to mention them. This also affects the treatment of the garment.
Again, most importantly, check your pockets! You don't want me, a stranger, to be privy to what you carry around in there, nor do I want to be. Stevie from Georgia
Stevie, thanks for your good hints, and here's one we would like to add: Be sure to keep your dry-cleaning receipts in case there is a problem. This could be just the proof you need in case an item is lost. Heloise
Dear Heloise: After I knit a gift for someone, I take two small plastic bags (zipper-top), put some leftover yarn in them and enclose a note with the person's name, the name of the item and the date. That way, if the gift needs mending later, I have the yarn to do it, or if the person happens to move away, he or she also has the yarn needed to mend the item. I also enclose a label from a skein of yarn in each bag that shows the laundering instructions. Deb Killian, Hamilton, Ind.
Dear Heloise: In the workshop, glue clothespins around the edges of the Pegboard over the workbench to hold various papers and warranties for all your power tools and lawn mowers. (If you put the papers in plastic sandwich bags, they will stay clean and dry, yet they will be in sight when you need them.) The clothespins will also hold small bags of tiny nails, screws and parts of items that need repairing. I keep a box of plastic sandwich bags in the workshop to encourage everyone to clean up all the leftovers from their various projects, so I don't have to do it. A Reader, via e-mail
XSend a money-saving or timesaving hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, TX 78279-5000, or you can fax it to (210) HELOISE or e-mail it to
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