With a show of hands, how many of you out there feel that your wedding day is one of the most important days of your life? Yes, as expected, almost all of you raised your hands. You’ll want to preserve as much as you can from that day, including your wedding dress, won’t you? There are very particular things you will want to do to preserve and store a wedding dress so that it doesn’t become ruined over time.

The most important thing to do when preserving your wedding dress is to get it stored as quickly as possible. Therefore, one good idea would be to arrange for a friend or family member to get the dress to the cleaner’s right after the ceremony, whilst you are off and running on your honeymoon with your new husband.

As you transport the wedding dress from to the dry cleaner’s store it flat and in a white cotton sheet that has been washed without detergent. This will help keep the gown in good shape. Whatever you do, don’t put the wedding gown in plastic as it will only oxidize the fabric quicker that is something you definitely don’t want to see happen.

You will want to double check your dress inside and out for stains of any kind, makeup smudges, or any other characteristic that is out of place. Make sure whoever drops up the wedding gown at the dry cleaner’s tells the employee about anything that has been found on the dress so that they can take special care into getting the matter taken care of so that the final product is a pristine dress ready for storage.

Once you have had your wedding gown properly cleaned, you will need to store it so that it remains preserved in pristine shape. There are two forms of storage that work the best: vacuum-sealed box storage and hanging storage.

The box you choose needs to be made of archival-quality materials which means everything enclosed with your dress needs to be acid and lignin free. If your gown is made of synthetic materials you will need to have buffered material and if it natural you will need to have unbuffered material. Using tissue paper between the folds can help prevent cracks when placed in the folds.

With the hanging method, you will use tissue paper and the cotton sheet that you will need to rewash in hot water. Lay the gown flat on top of the sheet and stuff it with tissue paper and then wrap it in the cotton sheet.

When handling your gown after dry cleaning, make sure you wear white cotton gloves so that your skin’s oils are not transferred to the dress. Store your gown in a dry, climate controlled environment. Whenever you have your wedding dress preserved and stored never use a container with windows as it will allow light in and that can yellow the dress. Store metal based buttons or sponge padding separately from the wedding gown. Make sure you take time out every anniversary or at the very least every five years or so to pull the wedding gown out of storage so you can inspect it to assure that it is still preserved properly. With these methods, your wedding dress will stay in mint condition for several years to come.