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Is Preserving Your Wedding Gown Important?

Updated on July 30, 2014

Your wedding gown---it represents memories from one of the most important days of your entire life. It sashayed you through the “I-do’s”, the reception, the dancing, the hugs and the joy. Chances are, you want to preserve your stunning gown to ensure it stays in pristine condition for decades to come. What a lot of people don’t realize is that if wedding gowns are not professionally cleaned at least 6 weeks after they have been worn, permanent damage can set in. Because of that, it’s crucial you preserve your gown in a timely manner.

If you have a purpose for your gown other than saving it as an heirloom, you’ll want the fabric and all he embellishments to be immaculate. Repurposing gown material into a cocktail dress, baby quilt, bassinet cover or clutch purse are several ways your gown can be used in meaningful ways where the repurposed items become an heirloom in their own right! But professionally cleaning is the first important step.

Your Gown Can Suffer Deterioration:

Professionally cleaning your gown will ensure the following does not occur:

1: Yellowing of the fabric

2: Potentially-permanent stains ‘setting’ in

3: Invisible stains becoming unexpectedly visible

4: Deterioration of fibers

Contact The Pro’s:

It’s easy to locate a reputable wedding gown cleaner that specializes in gown preservation. There are several questions you should ask a specialist, including:

1: “Is Perchloroethylene used in your cleaning process? This chemical is also known as ‘perc’ which can melt buttons and beads and damage delicate laces. Look for a preservation specialist that uses gentler ingredients.

2: “About how many gowns do you clean in a year?” The answer can indicate how experienced a particular location is with this specialized cleaning process.

3: “Will you provide details on how to ship my gown to you?” A preservation service should send you a bridal-gown preservation kit with instructions on how to ship the gown to their location.

4: “How long will it take for my gown to be returned to me?” The answer to that will depend on several variables.

What Process Will My Gown Go Through?

Every stain that might be visible--or invisible--on your gown will be addressed—blood, drink stains, make-up, perspiration, dirt etc. Special cleaning techniques will remove some stains completely while some ultra-stubborn stains will be mostly removed. Black lights are used to unveil stains that can’t be seen to the naked eye so no stains are overlooked.

A gown’s hem is typically the most soiled and it is subjected to gentle, yet effective, hand-cleaning using potent cleaners to eliminate or minimize grass and embedded grime.

Finally, steaming and/or pressing will complete the process. Your gown will take on virtually the same stunning appearance it did when you slipped into it for the very first time! It is meticulously folded and placed in an acid-free storage box, ready to be sent back to you!

When Can I Expect My Dress To Be Returned?

The amount of time it takes for the gown to be returned to you can vary anywhere from 3 weeks to several months--it all depends on the wedding gown preservation specialist involved as well as the type and number of services you might request. If you are planning on repurposing part of your dress into a baby-album cover for a baby shower on a certain date, be sure to plan your cleaning request well ahead of time to ensure prompt delivery so any modifications to the dress can be made in a timely manner to meet important deadlines.

Regardless of what plans you have for your wedding gown once it’s cleaned, you’ll have a cherished possession that will look new again—ready for its next personal and intimate journey!

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