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How To Store (& Preserve) Your Wedding Dress

Kelly Faetanini Amalfi Collection

As the reality of our “new normal” sets in amidst the COVID-19 pandemic across the world and advisements from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) continue to encourage social distancing and restrict gatherings, weddings scheduled for the coming months have quickly turned into crises to manage for many of our brides, rather than reasons to celebrate.

With the news of more “shelter in place” orders day after day, we know many of our brides are facing the disappointment of having to postpone saying “I do.” For those that already have their wedding dress, you may be wondering how to store and preserve your gown until your new wedding date. We’ve got you. Here, 6 things to keep in mind for keeping your wedding dress safe while sheltering—and beyond.

Purge the Plastic

While we don’t ship in plastic, the first rule of thumb recommended by any wedding gown preservation specialist is to remove the dress from any plastic that might have been added to the packaging of your dress at your salon if it will be stored for longer than a few days. Plastic does not typically allow fabrics to breathe and has the potential for staining as the fibers break down and gasses are emitted. It is best to use a cloth garment bag or plain cotton sheets to wrap your gown.

Assume the Position

Hanging your wedding dress in your closet might seem like the most practical step you could take, but if your dress made of our heavy crepe fabric (like Gabriella) or features beaded embroidery (like on Daniella), opt for storing your dress flat wrapped in a cotton sheet or in our breathable garment bag in a room or space that isn’t a “high traffic area” in your house—such as under the bed or on the top shelf of a spare closet. When storing your dress, be cautious of heat sources and pets. Placing your dress in a heat source’s path, or an area accessible to pets, could lead to some damage to your dress you could have prevented.

Keep Cool

Your dress should typically be kept in the same temperature/environment that you would find comfortable. Basements and attics typically are not the best places for storage, as the air may be damp and musty. Try to keep your dress in a spare room or bedroom where the temperature and humidity will not fluctuate and the dress can remain out of direct sunlight.

Reduce the Risk

This might be the trickiest one considering our current COVID-19 climate—Once your gown is properly stored away, try to resist the temptation to try it on or remove it from the bag (unless you need alterations and are working on that virtually or dropping off). Your chances of staining and potential oil marks increase with each time your dress is handled. Makeup and deodorant are some of the biggest culprits for staining when trying on your dress. Pro tip: If you must try on your gown for friends or family, be sure to remove your makeup and deodorant first!

wedding gown preservation and storage
Christy Nicole Photography

Rid the Wrinkles

When the week of your wedding finally arrives, carefully remove your wedding dress from its storage location a few days before the big day. Using a silk padded hanger, hang the dress somewhere high so all wrinkles and creases can drop out. If the dress still has a few stubborn wrinkles a day or two before the wedding day, you can hang the dress in the bathroom while a hot shower is running. Of course, you’ll want to be extra cautious that the dress is hung away from the shower, so it doesn’t get wet. If the wrinkles still give you trouble, consider asking a local seamstress or dry cleaner for help. Or if you are already out of town for the big day, many hotels and wedding facilities have steamers available for you to use just before your ceremony.

Preserve It

Check with your bridal salon for any wedding gown preservation recommendation in your area. After the wedding (before you jet off for your honeymoon), ask a bridesmaid or family member to drop off your dress at your local dry cleaners or preferred specialist to have your dress professionally cleaned, before stains set in. To best preserve your dress, you may consider purchasing a conservation-grade, acid-free box or container. It is best to avoid long-term storage on a hanger, because this can lead to stretching the fabric over time. As mentioned earlier, storing the dress under a bed or in a spare closet is the safest storage location to help preserve the life of the dress.

Bride and Groom Walking together
Breathe J Photography

To all of our brides who have reached out, shared your stories, or are bored at home in quarantine and sending us your wedding photos, we want to thank you for getting in touch! Have story to share or want to submit your wedding photos as a Kelly Faetanini bride to be featured on our Instagram or website? Email us at [email protected]! We can’t wait to hear from you!

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