How to Store Your Wedding Dress

Shopping for your wedding dress is one of the most exciting days out during wedding planning. This is the time to dress up and feel like a princess!  But, if you have already purchased your dress and it is now waiting at home for the big day (alterations and all), here are some storage tips to keep it looking its best.

Let it Breathe
While you may consider and airtight box after you say “I do”, storing a wedding dress for a future date is different. Your dress needs to breathe. Cloth garment bags will protect the material from outside elements while allowing proper ventilation. If you do not have a bag, simply place your dress between a flat bedsheet that fully covers the material. Cut a hole at the top of the sheet to allow your dress to hang with the sheet equally covering both sides. Feel free to use safety pins to carefully secure the sheet around the sides of your dress. Just make sure you do not pin the dress fabric, only the sheet surrounding your garment.

Let it hang
Hanging your dress tall will keep the fresh pressed look you received from the dress shop or alterations boutique. Once your dress is carefully placed inside the garment bag, hang it in a closet on a tall rack where the bottom is not bundled on the floor to prevent wrinkling. Try to select a location to hang it away from crowded spaces. If other clothes are shoved around your wedding dress, there is a chance more wrinkling will occur.

Find the best place
If you are debating which closet is best, choose the space that is opened rarely to protect your dress from overexposure to the sun. Also try to keep the dress in a cool, temperature-controlled room with low humidity. If you are storing your dress in a tropical environment, purchase a small humidifier from a local hardware store to keep your space cool and dry.

Leave it be
This may be the hardest part! Once you have safely stored your dress, try your best to leave it alone. Removing it frequently increases your change of spills, oils from your skin, new wrinkles, makeup, and other elements that can change the integrity of your new dress.

Once you are finally close to your wedding day, carefully remove your dress and have it professionally steamed.

How to Choose the Perfect Dress

You want to look and feel like a princess on your wedding day, and the endless available options can make any bride feel just a little overwhelmed.  Here are a few elements to keep in mind when shopping for the perfect dress. 

Your Style

Select a dress that fits appropriately with the style of your wedding.  If you are planning a beach wedding, chose an option that reflects a more casual tone.  A long evening gown with gloves to match may not flow very well in the sand and sunshine.  If you are hosting an evening ballroom reception and a church ceremony, this is where a stunning evening gown can wow the crowd. 

Body Type

Admiring a gown displayed on a mannequin does not reflect exactly how it will look on you. We are all shaped differently.  While some choices look stunning with your figure, others may not. Consider your body type and use this guide to help with the selection process.

  • Curvy: Brides with plenty of curves may want to choose a style that isn’t too snug. Accentuate a natural shape with a dress that is flowing and comfortable.
  •  Straight-Lined: These brides can look for a dress that creates curves. A tighter fit in some areas is the key to shaping a straight figure to look its best.
  •  Tall: A dress with a lower waist line that creates a curve looks exquisite on a taller bride. 
  •  Short: Higher waist-line or A-line dresses can lengthen a petite bride. In addition, a gown flowing to the ground with some accents up top can help create a taller look.
Comfort

Once you know the style and shape of the dress you need, it is crucial to keep comfort in mind.  You want to be at ease making vows at the alter and letting loose at your reception.  When you try on the perfect dress, walk around for a while.  Sit, stand, and even dance in the gown if you can get away with it.  An extra 30 minutes can make all the difference when determining if your selection will get you through an entire evening.  Most importantly, make sure you have room to add appetizers and dinner in the mix. 

Be sure to take a few trusted friends and family along and be willing to accept their honest feedback.   Together you can find the perfect gown while having lots of fun!

Your Wedding Dress – To Keep or Donate?

Congratulations on your wedding!  If you have finally tied the knot, you are probably on Cloud 9 and we share in your excitement.  But as you slowly reconnect with your daily life, you may notice your wedding gown displayed beautifully in your closet. We can help you decide what to do with it from here.

To Keep

If you find it hard to part with your dress, we understand.  It’s selection, fitting, and debut were a huge part of your wedding day.  But, leaving it alone to hang in the closet is not best for the fabric.  The first thing you need to do is find a trusting cleaner to remove any stains. Then, move on with its preservation.  Many cleaners can help with this task, but you can also accomplish this at home by carefully folding your gown and placing it in an air tight box and non-acid tissue paper.  Store the box containing your dress in a climate controlled environment. Perhaps, under a bed or a closet shelf is a safe space.

Now that your gown is properly stored, here are some reasons you may be glad to keep it close.

  1. A perfect keepsake. Your wedding dress can help bring back the best memories of the day you made your wedding vows.  You may even want to try it on again one day!
  2. Pass it down. Some mothers are delighted to see a daughter, granddaughter, or niece get married in their very own wedding gown.
  3. Recycle it. You can use your wedding dress in the future to make christening gowns for your children, pillows for special occasions, or even a baby bonnet.
  4. Sell it. Weddings can be costly. But, one way to replenish your costs is to consign your wedding gown. Many brides have found beautiful hand me down dresses and a great price.
To Donate

Donating your dress is another option if you do not have the space or desire to store it. There are some wonderful organizations that are happy to take it off your hands and share it with brides short of resources to purchase a new one.  Here are a few terrific options.

  1. Brides Across America (BAA) is a non-profit organization that gifts gowns to military families & first responders. Learn about BAA here.
  2. Angel Gowns sews wedding dresses into gowns for babies who are unable to come home from the hospital after birth. The gowns are a beautiful way to pay tribute to the infants and families at an incredibly challenging time. Learn about donating to the Angel Gown programs here.
  3. Wish Upon a Wedding helps support brides with life-threatening illnesses make their special wedding wishes come true. Through this charity, brides can have an intimate wedding in a beautiful gown without the stress and worry of extra costs or fittings. Here is how you can help donate to Wish Upon a Wedding.

Even if you can’t decide right away what the best option is for your wedding gown, in time you will be able to make the right decision.