Together with our experts at the Association of Wedding Gown Specialists, we have put together a crash course for DIY wedding gown care. (Not a DIY type of bride or just don’t have the time, consider our On-site bridal team to be sure your wedding goes off “without a hitch,” or in this case “with getting hitched”).
Lesson 1: Silk or not? Every bride should know the answer to that question because the fabric of your gown is everything. Silk is a hollow fiber so when you spill something on silk, or other natural fibers such as cotton and linen, the spill bonds with the fiber and acts like a dye. Even water is absorbed by natural fibers and leaves marks. Silk also wrinkles easily and requires stilled pressing or steaming.
Lesson 2: Garment bags are almost never full enough to protect your gown without flattening the skirt. When you take your gown home from the bridal shop, remove at least the skirt portion from the bag so that it can open fully. If you remove the gown completely, be sure to hang it somewhere safe from children and pets.
Lesson 3: If you are traveling by car with your gown, it may be best to leave it in the garment bag provided by the bridal shop until you reach your destination. If you are traveling by air, the airline will almost certainly insist you stuff the garment bag into the overhead space. To ensure your gown is protected when traveling consider investing in a Destination Wedding Chest.
Lesson 4: If you decide to lightly press your gown, make sure the iron is set to the temperature that is right for the fabric (see Lesson 1 above). Most steamers spit drops of water so if you use a steamer (hand steamers are great if you are a destination bride), be sure to cover the head of the steamer with a towel or washcloth to absorb the water.
Lesson 5: Many emergencies the day of the wedding can be managed with a needle, thread, and safety pins. Scissors are also useful. If nothing else, put some safety pins in the lining at the bottom of your gown so they will be handy if your bustle breaks.
Lesson 6: Learn the basics about stains. After all, your other clothes need care, too. There are three kinds of stains. Wetside stains such as coffee, tea, and wine will dissolve in water. Dryside stains such as lipstick and grease require a “dry” solution to dissolve the oily content. The third kind of stain is “complex” because it is composed of both wetside and dryside elements–think gravy or salad dressing. But remember, silk or not? Almost anything you use to try and remove stains from silk will leave a ring. If you try a one of our Style stain stick, be sure to test its effect on an inside seam before using it on your gown.
Lesson 6: The longer you leave your gown uncleaned, the less likely all of the stains can be removed when you do take it to be cleaned. Don’t wait for your husband or your mother to complain the gown takes up too much room. Look for a Wedding Gown Specialist and ask lots of questions about where and how your gown will be cleaned. And be sure to ask, today or twenty-five years from today, who will honor the guarantee your gown will not yellow!
To help ensure you have a wonderful wedding day consider looking into our Onsite Bridal Team. Our On-site Team handles pressing and touch ups to ensure your gown looks flawless when you walk down the aisle. Our expert also assist with emergencies stain removal, tailoring and repairs so you can enjoy your wedding no matter what is thrown in your way.