Fig: Fresh-picked clean. Fig is ripened with sweet fig and lychee and crowned by dandelions.
Check first. See if your item is colorfast by rubbing some Soak into a hidden area and rinsing after two minutes. If there’s no bleeding, you’re good to go.
Prepare yourself for some dirt. When you hand wash, you’ll probably see dirt and oils in the water, especially if you haven’t washed your piece in a while. If the water gets really dirty, pour it out and Soak a second time.
Don’t worry about colour. Gentle cleansers like Soak can pull excess dye out of knitted items. If you see dye in the water, it’s okay – it won’t harm your item. (It comes out of your clothes in the machine too, you just don’t see it.)
Get the water out. Squeeze out as much as you can, but be gentle. Don’t wring, twist it or lift the item and let the weight of the water stretch it out. Roll it up in a clean towel, or if your machine has a gentle spin cycle, spin the water away.
Lay it flat. Place the item on a towel, reshaping as you go (for the knitting-uninitiated, this process is called blocking). Lay it flat in a spot with good air circulation on all sides (like a drying rack), and flip it over after a while so it has a chance to dry on both sides.
Knitters, Soak your swatches. Measure your stitch count when the swatch has dried; the stitches will relax and the block will likely grow in size.