Caring for Your Varsity Letterman Jacket


A varsity letterman jacket is a symbol of pride for many people, especially school seniors and college students as it boasts of their achievement as an athlete. The amount of hard work and struggle the athletes had to put in day in and day out to earn the letters on their jacket and all the badges and decorations that brag about their achievements. The jacket grows old along with you and yet many lose it on the way to old age due to not preserving it well. Some also pass it on to their children as an heirloom, but when they start wearing it, they might not be able to care for it as well as their parent did.

So here are a few tips on how to care for your varsity letterman jacket and if you intend to pass it on to your child and make it a family heirloom, you should be paying extra attention to these tips.

Letterman jackets usually have two parts, one is the body part which is made of wool and the other are the arms which are made of leather. It is important to maintain these jackets since it is a combination of two different materials.

  1. When you are not using your varsity jacket, try to store it in a well-ventilated closet. Do not just throw it around in the basement or garage or on your couch.
  2. When you remove it, do not fold it and store it in your closet. Folding can lead to creases which will shorten its lifespan, instead hang it on a hanger in a well-ventilated closet.
  3. To know if the leather on the varsity jacket is genuine check the fabric care label. If it is genuine leather check if it has a finish. You can confirm it by dabbing a little water on the inside seam of the sleeve. If the water forms tiny beans on top of the leather, it indicates that the leather is finished. Once this is confirmed you can without fear clean your jacket with cold water. Never use hot water to clean your jacket, as hot water can shrink the wool and ruin the leather. You can add some mild shampoo to a bowl of water and using a soft cloth rub the leather with this water to clean it. It is also a good method to clean the liner of the jacket if a bad odour is developing.
  4. You can deodorize the jacket by putting it in an airtight container with a deodorizer. Another way to remove the odour is by airing it out of direct sunlight like hanging by the window where direct sunlight does not fall.
  5. If the jacket is stained a mixture of alcohol and vinegar in 1:1 ratio to remove stubborn stains.
  6. Use a lint remover to remove lint from the wool.
  7. If you plan to wash the jacket, then it is better to turn it inside out so that the leather and the detailing on the jackets are protected. Also, remember to wash it on the gentle mode of your washing machine and never machine dry the jacket. Keep in mind that washing the jacket must be done very rarely not frequently as it can ruin the jacket and its leather. It is better to wash the jacket by hand using gentle pressure.

These tips will help you lengthen the shelf-life of your varsity jacket for many more years.

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