A wedding gown is a beautiful representation of a beautiful day. It is no wonder that many women prefer wedding gown preservation after the ceremony. There are many reasons that wedding gowns are preserved. Some women keep their gowns simply for the memories they treasure. Other women preserve their wedding gowns so that they can be worn on significant anniversaries. Another reason for preserving a wedding gown is so that it can be worn by a daughter or granddaughter in years to come. Finally, there are women who engage in wedding gown preservation so that they can sell them.
Tips for Wedding Gown Preservation
How a wedding gown is preserved depends upon the materials used in the gown. However, there are some general recommendations for preserving your wedding gown, according to Church Hill Classics (diplomaframe.com, Church Hill Classics, http://www.diplomaframe.com/pages/517_preserving_your_wedding_dress.cfm):
* If the wedding gown needs cleaning, do it as soon as possible to remove any stains before they set in.
* Store the dress wrapped in acid-free tissue paper.
* Wedding gown storage in a box might be better than hanging in the closet, if the bride is concerned about shoulder and neck stretching.
* The wedding dress should be kept in a dry environment, free of extreme temperatures and without direct sunlight to prevent mold and mildew.
One of the main priorities should be to keep the wedding gown from yellowing. This is why wedding gown storage in an acid-free environment is so important. Heritage Gown (heritagegown.com, Heritgage Gown, http://www.heritagegown.com/gownpreserve.php) recommends that buffered tissue be used for synthetic fiber gowns (wedding gowns made from acetate, polyester and rayon). For silk or wool, however, un-buffered tissue is recommended.
Heritage Gown also points out that creasing permanently is a concern. This is true especially if the bride wants to sell the gown or have it available for later wear, either by the bride or by a descendant. In order to keep the gown from creasing while in storage, it should be removed every two or three years and folded in a different manner to prevent permanent creases. Hanging a gown is the easiest way to prevent creases.
Wedding Gown Preservation While Wearing
The first step to preserving a wedding gown — before storage after the fact — is to take care of the dress during the festivities. Shawna Smith (associatedcontent.com, Associated Content, http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/271765/11_tips_to_preserve_a_wedding_dress.html?cat=23) recommends that brides start at the wedding to take the necessary steps to prevent damage as much as possible:
* A guard worn under arms of a sleeved dress can prevent discoloration from sweat stains.
* Brides should avoid smoking near the dress and avoid cigarette and cigar smoke as much as possible while wearing the dress.
* If the bride is using hair products and make-up, or perfume, these items should be applied prior to putting on the dress. Touch ups should be applied only after the dress has been properly covered by a shield of some sort (a towel or sheet works well).
Brides who act to preserve their wedding dresses during the wedding, as well as who employ proper wedding gown storage techniques, should have few problems with wedding gown preservation that keeps the keepsake in excellent condition.