While you’re planning your wedding, people are going to give you lots of tips you may not use. They’ll recommend foods for your reception, flowers for your ceremony and what jewelry you should wear down the aisle. What people don’t often mention is there are a few things brides should know about the dress after the wedding. Most traditions are up to your discretion but preserving a wedding dress requires a few steps you should never skip.
Read on to learn tips about wedding dress preservation all brides should know. When prepared for the preservation process, your dress will look perfect for decades to come.
Cleaning and Preservation Are Different
Even if you’re extra careful with your dress on your wedding day, it will still get a little dirty. There will be stains on the hem from dragging on the ground or tiny drops of champagne on the bodice that dried before you noticed.
You can get your wedding dress cleaned after your wedding but be aware that it’s different from having your dress preserved. Cleaning removes stains, both water- and oil-based, and freshens the delicate fabric after a big event. Preservation starts with an assessment and ends in a specialized plan.
Preservation means that a specialist considers the stitching, fabric and embellishments of your dress to determine how they’ll age over time. They’ll also recommend different procedures for removing spots, based on the stain’s compound.
Preserve Your Dress Right Away
The sooner you can get your dress preserved, the better it will look. Enjoy your honeymoon if you have one planned. Then, take your dress to a preservation specialist within at least the first four weeks after your wedding.
Stains will become more permanent the longer they’re left to sit on your dress. Preservation will remove these splotches before they set in. No matter the fabric — whether it’s traditional silk woven into cloth or taffeta, made from synthetic fibers — this process will help it hold up over time.
Use a Reputable Service
You may have used the same dry cleaner for years. However, that doesn’t mean they’re the right people to handle the cleaning and preservation of your wedding dress. You want to work with a reputable service that specializes in caring for wedding gowns. They’ll know the best solvents for your dress and how to preserve it once clean.
Look for a company endorsed or recommended by designers. Many services also come with a lifetime guarantee. If you think your dress needs re-cleaned to withstand the test of time, they’ll cover the costs.
Research What They Clean With
Before you pay for service, talk with potential companies about what they clean with. Get a list of local cleaners and do your research. You’ll find that many dry cleaners often clean with recycled solvents, which remove and redeposit impurities that will make your dress smell.
A trusted cleaner will use virgin solvents, which remove impurities and keep your dress safe during the washing process.
Store Your Dress Properly
The last thing you should know is how to store your dress correctly. A preservation specialist might do this for you by sealing your preservation box airtight.
A seal prevents oxidation from discoloring your dress over time. If your cleaner doesn’t have this option, it’s best to get your dress professionally sealed before bringing it home.
Talk with Your Specialist
The specialist you end up choosing to preserve your dress will want to sit down and talk with you about the process. Feel free to ask any questions you have. They’ll want you to be comfortable and enjoy the result. Write your questions down now and remember to ask them later.