Midlothian native invents sweater un-shrinker

Published: Oct. 22, 2015 at 7:07 PM EDT|Updated: Oct. 23, 2015 at 5:21 PM EDT
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Don't you hate it when you accidentally shrink a sweater in the laundry? A woman who grew up in Midlothian has invented a product that can un-shrink it. And now her business is a finalist in a contest to win a Super Bowl commercial.

Oh, the frustration of shrinking clothes in the laundry. It happened so many times to Desiree Davis Stolar, she and a classmate at Harvard Business School set out to find a solution.

"We started testing a bunch of active ingredients in our dorm room, reading wool science text books this thick," Stolar explained.

What they invented was a solution called Unshrinkit.

To test Unshrinkit, I put on a 100% wool sweater that's been shrunk in the laundry. When I put it on, the waistband came down to middle of my hips, and the sleeve came to the first set of knuckles on my hand.

Stolar added a full bottle of Unshrinkit to a gallon of warm water. "Then I'm going to soak the sweater in the solution," she showed us. "You want to fully immerse it because the goal is to penetrate the fibers."

Then she rinsed it, squeezed it out, gently pulled where the sweater had shrunk, and let it air dry.

Unshrinkit has beaten out thousands of small businesses to become a finalist in the Intuit Small Business Big Game contest for a free Super Bowl ad. You'll remember last year the contest helped launch Goldie Blox, toys that teach girls engineering, into the stratosphere.

Stolar says winning a Super Bowl ad would be a touchdown for Unshrinkit.

"For us to be able to say to millions of Americans," said Stolar, "because we know this is a common everyday problem for people, there's finally a solution."

Now for the final result. I put the dried, treated sweater on again. This time the waistband came down lower on my hips and the sleeve came to to the second set of knuckles on my hand. We found Unshrinkit worked.

You can order Unshrinkit for 12 dollars a bottle through Unshrinkit.com or Amazon.com.

You can vote for the company to win a Super Bowl ad until November 3 through Unshrinkit.com/vote or the Intuit Small Business Big Game website.

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