6 Wedding Dress Preservation Mistakes to Avoid

What not to do in order to keep your bridal gown in pristine condition.

When your dream wedding is over, it’s time to figure out how to store all of your keepsakes. Will you dry your bouquet? Which photos will be framed? And perhaps most importantly: how will your store your wedding dress? After all the time you spent looking through photos, trying on countless gowns to find “the one,” and getting your dress carefully altered to make sure it fit your body like a glove, the last thing you want to do is let your dress fall into disrepair.

Even if you don’t plan to keep your bridal gown, it’s important to make sure it is properly cleaned and preserved before you sell or donate it. This step is especially crucial if you hope to have your future daughter wear your dress to her own wedding one day. After decades go by, it would be terrible for you to dig up your beloved wedding dress for your daughter only to find it is not in good enough condition for her to don on her own special day.

wedding dress preservation mistakes, keeping your bridal gown in good condition, randy fenoli bridal gown
Photo by Amy Anaiz Photography

Avoid these mistakes in order to keep that from happening:

- Not reading the care label for any special instructions. This is the simplest, but arguably most important, mistake you can make.
- Delaying the cleaning. Try to get preservation taken care of within one month of your wedding, if possible.
- Assuming no visible dirt means it's clean. Even if there’s no dirt at the hem, an evening hugging your nearest and dearest means that sweat and oil is likely on your gorgeous gown, which could cause it to yellow over time without proper cleaning.
- Keeping it in the wrong place. For example, storing your dress in the attic or basement, where extreme temperatures and humidity can cause damage. A safe, dry room is bes – under your bed can be a great option.
- Hanging it up. This stretches any straps or sleeves, especially as you’re unlikely to be taking it out to wear frequently!
- Keeping it in an unsafe container. Regular cardboard can discolor your dress over time. Plastic garment bags can retain moisture and collect mold. This is why so many brides shell out for a proper preservation kit. 

For more bridal gown preservation tips, click here. Learn how to know when you've found your dream dress and all about the logistics of wearing a second dress

Authored by: Emily Lasnier