Do remember that timing makes a difference. “The optimal way to store your wedding dress before your wedding can vary depending on how far away you are from your wedding day. Invisible stains, such as the oils from your hands that are transferred to your dress during handling, can become unsightly stains over time. Additionally, overall fabric yellowing can begin in just a short amount of time, leaving your wedding dress looking less than brilliant on your wedding day.” – Leah R. McCoy, President, Wedding Gown Preservation Kit
DO store your gown in a garment bag if your wedding is only a few months away. “If your wedding day is just a few months away, it is perfectly fine to store your wedding dress in the garment bag your boutique provided without much concern. Your wedding dress simply won’t have enough time before your wedding for fabric yellowing to occur and staining won’t be an issue if your dress is stored safely in the garment bag and handled as little as possible.” – Leah R. McCoy, President, Wedding Gown Preservation Kit
DON’T ignore your gown storage conditions. “Long-term storage in plastic bags can trap moisture, leading to mold growth. Choose a breathable fabric garment bag or acid-free box instead. Avoid storing your gown in areas prone to extreme temperature changes, humidity, or pests. These factors can harm the fabric and intricate details.” – Natalya Kolosok, Manager, New York City Bride
DO keep day-of care and maintenance in mind. “Purchase a handheld steamer for the big day to do any touch ups as needed. Pack a small emergency kit with thread that matches the color of your dress, a needle, double stick fashion tape and safety pins. On the day of, make sure to keep the dress hanging without the bottom touching the floor. A good spot tends to be from the edge of doorway, closet or a garment rack.” – Michelle Yom, Co-Founder & Creative Director, Poémia
DON’T hang your dress by the shoulder seams or straps. “It is extremely important to hang your wedding dress from the inner hanging loops, and not by the actual shoulder seams. The inner hanging loops are purposefully attached to the sturdiest seams of your dress to ensure no fabric stretching will occur as it is hanging in your closet. When hanging your wedding dress, be sure to hang it from as high as possible to avoid your garment bag contacting the ground. Hanging your wedding dress from a doorframe or from the edge of a high shelf in your closet is often a great option. This will ensure dust, dust mites, and bugs won’t get into your garment bag and cause fabric damage. The only situation where you’d want to store your wedding dress with your garment bag open is when you have a long train attached. Spread a fresh, clean bedsheet on the ground and allow your train to flow out of the garment bag and billow onto the clean sheet to avoid your train developing wrinkles in the garment bag. Fold the clean sheet back over your train to avoid it being stepped on in your closet. If you plan to have your train professionally pressed before your wedding, you can leave it stored in your garment bag if it is just for a short time.” – Leah R. McCoy, President, Wedding Gown Preservation Kit.
DO keep your gown in a cool, dry, dark place. “Before the wedding day, keep the dress covered in a garment bag. Especially if your garment bag is clear, keep it in a cool, dry and dark place out of humidity.” – Michelle Yom, Co-Founder & Creative Director, Poémia
DON’T try any DIY stain removal. “Trying to remove stains yourself, especially without proper knowledge and tools, can make the stain worse or damage the fabric. Steer clear of using harsh chemicals or bleach for stain removal. These can cause irreversible damage to the fabric’s delicate fibers. Always consult a professional cleaner beforehand.” – Natalya Kolosok, Manager, New York City Bride
DO avoid touching your gown as much as possible. “The best advice for handling your wedding dress before your wedding day is not to. Although it may be tempting to take your dress out of the box or garment bag it came in, oils, lotions, perfumes, and other transferred contaminates can cause premature staining and yellowing. If you must handle your wedding dress before your wedding day, be sure to remove all jewelry that could catch on fabrics and wear white cotton or linen gloves. Avoid your dress brushing against the ground or contacting other objects that have the potential to transfer contaminates. It is fine to remove your wedding dress from the garment bag for your final fitting and alterations as this normally occurs just weeks before your wedding day.” – Leah R. McCoy, President, Wedding Gown Preservation Kit
DON’T delay your wedding dress fitting. “It is recommended you have your initial fitting two months in advance of your wedding, and because many brides are on a mission to lose weight before their wedding, a final fitting two weeks or less before your wedding day. Be sure to ask the seamstress who will be altering your dress what precautions they take, such as having a clean, sanitized workspace and wearing cotton gloves when handling your dress. Your initial fitting is also a good time to ask them to perform an examination of your dress to be sure there are no visible stains, pulls, or fabric yellowing on your gown. If they identify any issues, there is still plenty of time to have it professionally cleaned and whitened before your wedding day.” – Leah R. McCoy, President, Wedding Gown Preservation Kit
DO steam your gown, rather than ironing. “If your gown gets wrinkled, use a handheld steamer instead of an iron. Ironing can damage delicate fabrics and embellishments.” – Natalya Kolosok, Manager, New York City Bride
DO get your gown cleaned soon after the wedding. “After the big day, if you plan on preserving your gown, make sure to get it cleaned soon after the wedding so that stains don’t have time to set. For our Ever After plan, we offer our service up to 1 year after the purchase date so make sure to get in touch before then. We also suggest having a tailor hem your gown so you can continue to wear the dress long after the wedding day as a cocktail length white dress.” – Michelle Yom, Co-Founder & Creative Director, Poémia
DO lay your dress flat whenever you’re transporting it. “When transporting your wedding dress from the boutique, and to your wedding venue, it is best to lay your wedding dress flat across the back seat of your vehicle. If you need a little extra room to transport other guests, you can use the hanger hooks above your door, but be sure the bottom of your dress is draped across the backseat towards the center of your vehicle to avoid the car door crushing your dress when you close it. Be absolutely certain no items are placed on top of your wedding dress during transport and be sure to alert any passengers not to as well.” – Leah R. McCoy, President, Wedding Gown Preservation Kit
DO get your gown professionally cleaned if you bought your dress far in advance of your wedding day. “The rule of thumb is that your wedding dress will need to be professionally cleaned before your wedding if you purchase your dress 6 months or more before your wedding day. We like to use the “Paper Towel Test” which is to simply hold up a fresh paper towel to your wedding dress to determine if your dress has started to yellow and fade and you need to whiten your wedding dress. If you determine your wedding dress needs to be cleaned and whitened, send in your wedding dress at least six to eight weeks before your wedding to ensure it arrives back to you in time. We have an option when purchasing our Clean-Only Kit to add “Rush Processing” to your order which will move your wedding dress up to the beginning of the line. Doing so will cut down processing time to just 14 days.” – Leah R. McCoy, President, Wedding Gown Preservation Kit
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