Wedding Gown Advice: Preservation!

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Wedding Gown Advice: Preservation!

Why make an effort to carefully and correctly preserve your wedding dress? Wedding gowns are a big investment and one of the most important pieces of clothing you will ever wear, even if it’s only worn once! Preserving your wedding gown makes your special day last forever. We recommend reaching out to a Wedding Gown Specialist near you! You can also listen to the full detailed podcast that his blog was written off of, here, for more information on cleaning and preservation. 

Bits and pieces from Nayri, Wedding Fashion Expert’s Nayri Unveiled Podcast series, Episode 31 featuring Sasha Albitt of Albitt’s Fine Cleaners and Launderers:

Getting your wedding dress ready for preservation is a tricky task when done correctly. Cleaning a wedding gown is not like cleaning any other garment. Designers are not creating dresses for their cleanability, they’re creating dresses to make the bride look and feel like a princess on her wedding day! On your wedding day, your dress goes through a lot. You’re walking over asphalt, grass, and many other dirty surfaces, and each different type of stain requires a specific method of cleaning. Cleaning your wedding gown requires special care and close attention to detail. These gowns are made up of many different fabrics, beading, embroidery, and embellishments that can all be easily ruined or tarnished if not cared for properly. 

Sasha mentions that because of FDC requirements, garments made in the US are required to have a care label attached so that the consumer can correctly clean the garment, but the cleaning instructions on these labels are not always correct. Sasha also mentioned that many dry cleaners have learned the hard way to not always follow the instructions provided on care labels, sometimes they’re completely wrong or contradictory. Although these labels are helpful due to the fact that they provide information on the contents and fabric make-up, it is very important for cleaners to understand materials as well as how to test for different materials. 

Both Nayri and Sasha recommend NOT having your gown cleaned before your wedding day. It is very risky to have your dress cleaned before you wear it because anything could easily go wrong during the various cleaning processes. However, there are some exceptions. For example, if you’re wearing your grandmother’s or mother’s wedding gown or have bought or plan to buy a sample gown, you may want to consider taking it to an experienced cleaner to freshen it up before your big day. 

Now, let’s talk about preservation. “When you preserve your gown it’s really just a way of properly storing it,” Sahsa says. If a gown is stored on a hanger in a garment bag, not only could the wrinkles become damaging, but the weight of the gown on the hanger will also cause problems and potentially even ruin it. Not only are there issues with hanging and garment bags, but there are potential fume damage threats simply because of the atmosphere which can turn the gown yellow. When properly storing wedding dresses, Albitt uses an acid-free and lingen free cardboard-like boxes along with acid-free tissue to create a preservation chest free of harmful chemicals. To avoid wrinkling the gowns are rolled up like burritos and placed into the box. Sasha suggests checking on your gown every anniversary (or once a year) to keep an eye on the acid-free tissue paper that will need to be replaced once it starts to yellow in color. The preservation chest should be placed somewhere that is not too hot or cold, and out of sunlight. It is usually recommended to place the box under your bed or a safe area in your closet avoiding any higher temperatures.

For more details on how to find a good cleaner, be sure to check out Nayri’s Podcast here!