Wedding dress cleaning, preserving and storing in an acid free box

How to Clean and Preserve Your Wedding Dress

So what do you need to do with your wedding dress after you big day?  Like any apparels, a proper way to clean and store your wedding dress is your next critical task.  In fact, a correct way of cleaning and preserving should be done as soon as possible.  This is to make sure your investment in your dresses can be taken good care of and remain in good condition.

Reasons for Wedding Dress Cleaning and Preservation:

  1. Oxidation:  Stains from food, makeup and perspiration will be oxidized over time and turn the dress yellowish if no proper cleaning is done.
  2. Chemical fume:  You may not know, but once the dress is put away and left in the plastic garment bag, it would cause a chemical fume that turn the dress yellow, even the dress is properly cleaned.

Cleaning Techniques:
There are different way of cleaning your wedding dress and mostly the decision of choosing the cleaning method depends on your dress’s fabrics and trims.

  1. Wet-cleaning is one of the most common method.  It involves in washing the dress by hand with water and gentle cleansers. It works the best for stain removal and leaves no chemical on the dress, hence keeping the dress in good condition.
  2. Dry-cleaning is another common method that involves in pre-treaing the stains and then placing the dress in a dry cleaning machine that uses solvents, such as perchloroethylene or petroleum-based cleansers. Perchloroethylene or perc works the best in degreasing the stains in dresses that are made of silk, rayon, or acetate. However, perch would most likely damage sequins and beads, so precaution needs to be taken. Petroleum based solvents are more gentle but not as effective in removing stains; however, its high oil contents enriches certain fabrics and gives off better appearance on dresses.

In general, if your dress and lining are silk, rayon or acetate and does not have sequins and beads, dry clean your dress with perc is appropriate.  If there are sequins and beads in your dress, dry clean with petroleum based solvents are recommended.
If your dress and lining are polyester, then wet cleaning with hand wash is ideal.

Most experts would not recommend you to put your dress away in a garment plastic bag, which not only gives off chemical fume, but also causes wrinkles and traps moisture.  The proper way of preserve the dress after cleaning is to place the wedding dress in a acid free storage boxes with acid free tissue paper. Regular tissue paper contains acid will destroy your dress. An acid free or ph neutral cardboard like Acid Free Wedding Dress Storage Boxcan preserve your small wedding dress safest.  If too much folding involves in getting your dress inside a storage box, then consider Wedding Dress Travel Bag

Image credits Via, Inspired by The Knot Wedding Shop

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