Monday, May 24, 2004

Stabbed by a Label?

Some months ago, National Public Radio's Morning Edition show did a segment on the changes in clothing labels ("100% rayon--do not machine wash" etc.). A light went on for me as they described how manufacturers can, and do, save 1 or 2 cents on the manufacturing cost of each individual garment by having the sewn-in labels printed on stiff material with sharp edges instead of on soft, silky material. Listening to the show, I realized I had recently stopped ordering clothes from one of my favorite mail-order houses because I associated wearing their shirts with a literal pain in the neck. Since none of my clothes are designer garments with resale potential (!), I got out the embroidery scissors and removed the labels from t-shirts, nightgowns, blouses--anything likely to be next to my skin. New clothes get a one-month grace period (in case they might have to be returned for a manufacturing defect) and then--snip! What an improvement, plus no one is every sidling over to tuck in a label at the back of my neck.

Removing stiff tags does a lot to improve towels, too. If you think you might someday want to see the style number or color code of the towels, leave one tag attached on the bathmat or a wash cloth.

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