Is it too late to clean my wedding dress?

So, you've already picked your flowers, your photographer, and booked your wedding and reception venue. Perhaps you are on the eve of your wedding or getting very close to the 'big day'. Maybe you are like many already happily married women with your beautiful wedding dress still hanging in your guest room closet waiting for you to decide what to do with it. If you are a soon-to-be bride, a newly married woman, or celebrating your 10th anniversary and wondering about wedding dress preservation, don't worry, you aren't alone. If you haven't gotten the details of what to do with your gown after the wedding ironed out, you still aren't alone. It's a very common concern and one that many brides procrastinate about long after their wedding day. We often have brides asking exactly how long they can wait to preserve their dress as they think too much time has passed even to consider cleaning and preserving their wedding dress. Well, fear not because we have all the answers you'll ever need.

Timeless, elegant, chic wedding gowns are the ones that never go out of style, and most wedding gowns fall somewhere into that category. The styles might change slightly throughout the years, the cut of an A-line dress might go a little dramatic while the bodice of a mermaid cut becomes a little more revealing, but the overall style of a classic gown never fails. Of course, the wedding gown industry is filled with trends that come, go, change, return, and repeat every few decades, and that's what makes it so exciting. No matter which gown you choose, classic or trendy, you allot a significant amount of money on this one purchase.

Your wedding gown is the single most expensive item of clothing most women will ever wear, and it's the most important piece of clothing women will ever wear. Your wedding gown is the dress you wear one time on the day that's most important to you in your life. You become one family in this dress, and you begin living your dream life the moment you put it on and exchange your vows. You might only wear it once, but it will never lose its value to you. Because wedding gowns are so expensive, so important, and not unlikely to come back into style in a decade or so, many brides prefer to preserve their wedding gowns rather than hang them in the back of a dusty closet or pack them away in the bottom of an old box. If it's too late to preserve your wedding gown, you can still restore it and then preserve it. 

Because Trashing the Dress Happens

It's a fad, but it's one that hasn't seemed to go away in the past few years. Call it silly, call it genius; call it whatever you want, but the photos brides post online on sites such as Pinterest and Instagram are filled with photos of women in the middle of the ocean kissing their new husband. They're riding horses, playing baseball on a field, and standing in their gowns in the middle of a football field getting dirty and athletic with their new husband.

To Turn Back Time and Restore Your Gown to its Original Beauty

Time is a thief, and perhaps the most devious thief of all. It goes by so quickly, and you never get it back. The art of wedding dress restoration changes that fact, however. With our amazing wedding dress restoration service, we are able to turn back the hands of time to provide your wedding dress with a chance at its full glory once again. A gown that's yellowed after being stored inadequately for decades can be painstakingly restored to its former glory, and you can see it in all its glory once again.

This is a lovely opportunity for anyone with a sentimental gown that's old, delicate, and seemingly destroyed. The hands of time take a toll on fabric, but our team of restoration artists can reverse the signs of aging on virtually any fabric of any age. Your great grandmother's wedding dress from the 1800s isn't the loss you think it might be. There's a chance it can be restored and preserved for you for generations to come.

Want more information on wedding dress yellowing? We have the answers on how to avoid it and restore it. 

Because Modern Cleaning Technology is Amazing!

Many brides fear their own wedding gown is far too gone to restore. Perhaps the idea of restoring a gown with deodorant stains, a smear of lipstick, or some red wine on it is simple in comparison to the issues you have. Was your wedding gown damaged in a flood, a fire, or another natural disaster? Many brides fear their gown has been destroyed by something they never saw coming, and they feel their hearts break when they realize their gown was part of the damage of such a tragic event.

Your wedding gown is everything to you, and that's why you want to restore it. It's hard not to worry that someone is spilling on you, that you might make a mess on your wedding day, and that your dress might not come clean, but your big day is not for your tears or worry. It's for your smiles, your happiness, and your tears of only joy. Don't let the idea of your dress being forever ruined top you from having the time of your life. We can help you with that. Let our restoration services provide you with peace of mind when something unexpected occurs.

While there is never a guarantee that the extent of damage your dress incurred is capable of being restored, you'd be quite surprised what we can accomplish when we restore gowns. Whether they are covered in soot following a fire, wet after a flood, or damaged in some other way, we might be able to restore your gown. Our delicate process is able to help gowns that seem far too damaged to repair, and that's what sets us apart from the crowd. If your dress was damaged in a horrible accident, let us see what we can do for you. We always take your money back if we are unable to repair your gown to its full glory, so there is no reason not to try.

Check out our wedding dress cleaning options here. 

Know Your Fabric

Synthetic fibres and natural fibres are treated differently, and you'll need to know which you're working with in order to approach the stain appropriately. Regarding synthetic fabrics like polyester - there's nothing you can do to damage the dress using conventional at-home cleaning methods like simple soap and water or seltzer water. Silk satin, organza, chiffon, silk crepe, and others are natural fibre fabrics and there are many things one can do to cause damage and very few things that will not cause damage and that will actually assist a professional in safely and successfully removing stains that occur during the ceremony or reception.

While applicable to wedding dresses, the stain advice below also applies to couture dresses and dyed fabrics, so you may be able to follow this advice if you're in a bind at your rehearsal dinner or any other wedding events and wearing a woven fabric dress. It's also good information to know in case a bridesmaid notices a stain on her dress before the processional.

Liquid Stains

If it's a liquid stain of any kind, the first thing is to blot and remove excess liquid. Though tempting, he points out, and rubbing can cause more damage. Next, apply powder, which can be cornstarch, baby powder, or a mix of the two to match the colour of the wedding dress. The key here is to allow the stain matter to lift away from the dress rather than absorbing into the fibres. Lastly, you'll very gently brush away the moisture with a very soft-bristled brush, the tip of the finger (not the nail), or back of the finger in a gentle, brushing motion. It's perfectly fine to leave a light layer of the powder on the dress to continue removing moisture, and you'll want to get the dress to a professional as soon after the wedding as possible.

Oily Stains

For oily stains like lipstick or makeup, we advise starting by gently brushing the excess matter off with a dull edge knife. Remove as much as you can by pulling it away from the fabric. Next, apply powder, which will adhere to the stain. It's okay to leave it there because it's a masking agent, so it'll mask the colour of the stain while absorbing some of the oils in the stain. After a half-hour or so, simply brush the powder off and leave it alone. If you plan to preserve the dress, again you'll want to get it to a professional as soon after the wedding as possible.

Grass, Mud, Soil

Grass stains, mud, and soil should be left alone on the wedding day, so they don't embed more into the yarns. Any type of liquid applied to any stain, if not flushed and dried properly, will complicate the stain and make the matter worse. A professional cleaner can address these complex stains after the wedding.

Keep It in Perspective

In terms of keeping your cool about stains on your wedding day, most small stains along with dirt on the bottom of the dress rarely show up in photos.

What not to do?

Commercial stain removers and stain pens cause irreversible damage by bleaching a stain. This is the kind of damage that can't typically be undone once it gets to a cleaner, so you'll want to steer clear of using these methods on your wedding dress.

There's an old wives tale that if you pour white wine on a red wine stain, it'll take out the red. We understand the chemistry and the concept behind this, but while you're dulling the colour of the red wine, you're adding more liquid to a dye component stain. When it dries, it essentially re-dyes the yarns, and the pink residue of the stain becomes very difficult to remove. Brides to resist the urge to dilute any liquid stain further.

Post-Wedding Cleaning

After the wedding, you'll want to get your dress to a cleaner who specializes in conservation cleaning. When seeking out a cleaner, ask about their methods and practices, and their training in cleaning and archiving ceremonial costumes like wedding gowns. As these fabrics are delicate and the dress' constructions complicated, it's important that the methodologies for conservation are appropriate for the garment.


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