You invest a lot of time and energy into finding just the perfect wedding dress for your special day. More than just the garb you will don on this day, your gown represents the magic of the moment that is to be treasured for a lifetime. For most people, preserving the wedding dress is a way of preserving the innocent and pure love that it represents.
Whether you want to create a keepsake from your wedding day or you are imagining an heirloom to pass down through the generations, here are some tips for preserving your wedding dress with confidence.
1. Timing is Everything
A common mistake that many brides make is to wait to take their wedding dress in to be dry cleaned and preserved. In fact, some people wait as long as six weeks before having this service completed. This lapse in time allows stains that may otherwise seem invisible to set in and begin damaging the materials. Over time you will notice dark discoloration and brittle fabric spots occurring. These problems eventually are irreversible.
It is recommended that you take your wedding gown off as soon as your reception has concluded. This will prevent additional stains and damage from occurring. Create a plan of action for getting your wedding dress to the dry cleaners within 48 hours following your wedding day. This gives the professional cleaner the ability to start working on any stains that may have occurred during the festivities without them being locked into the fabric for ever and always. If you are unable to take the gown in, you may be able to work with your dry cleaner to have someone else get the dress to them in the recommended time period.
2. Don’t Treat Stains Yourself
No matter how much care you put into protecting your wedding dress from spills or dirt exposure, there are always stains that appear. Don’t try to treat these stains yourself, as you can actually cause more damage than intended.
Chemical cleaners can lock the stains deep into the fabric and deteriorate the fibers of the gown. Your dry cleaner has the ability to remove the stains with specialized solvents that condition the fabric and restore the beauty of your gown to its original state.
3. Choose a Dry Cleaner with Preservation Experience
There is a big difference between standard dry cleaning and preservation services for a wedding dress. You should select a professional that has experience preserving wedding dresses. These experts know how to preserve a wedding dress and will prepare a cleaning and preservation plan that is specifically designed for your gown’s care in mind.
If you pre-schedule your wedding dress preservation service before your wedding, you may need to take the gown in with you when meeting with the dry cleaning and preservation specialist. This will give them the ability to take the stitching, fabric and other design details into consideration when making a care plan for your dress.
4. Read the Dress Label
Regardless of the different types of expert tips you find for preserving your wedding dress, nothing compares to the actual care instructions included on your dress’s label. You should always read these care instructions thoroughly before attempting to have any cleaning services performed on the wedding dress. Your dry cleaner will take these details into account when creating a preservation plan for you.
5. Ensure the Dry Cleaner Uses a Virgin Solvent
Dry cleaning services utilize either recycled cleaning solutions or virgin solvents for removing dirt, odors and stains that get into the fabrics of your clothing. Recycled cleaning solutions can be broken down, causing a weakening in their cleaning abilities. This is not a risk you want to take with something as treasured as your wedding gown.
Talk with the dry-cleaning professional to see what type of cleaning solvent they use in their services. Ask that they use virgin solvents when cleaning and preserving your gown.
6. Box or Bag Used for Storing a Wedding Dress Should Be Airtight
The storage box or bag used for storing a wedding dress once it is cleaned and prepared for preservation should be crafted in a manner that doesn’t allow air to seep in. Ensuring that the storage box or bag is airtight will prevent unwanted discoloration, molding or odors from occurring regardless of how long you keep the gown tucked away. Speak with your dry cleaning and preservation specialist about the storage products that will be used.
7. Protect Your Dress from Elements
Once your wedding dress is cleaned and properly preserved, the rest falls on you. Always store your wedding dress out of the sunlight and away from any types of heat sources. Keeping the dress in its storage container, you will want to find a dark, cool and dry location to keep it tucked away.
To learn more about how you can prepare for preserving your wedding prior to your special day, speak with one of our expert dry cleaners in Pagosa. You are sure to find their level of expertise and knowledge related to wedding dress preservation to be of great value. We look forward to working with you helping to safeguard your priceless memories one wedding dress at a time.