You’ve put away all the wedding shower gifts and cleaned up the last bit of beach sand from your suitcase, now it’s time to think about storing your wedding dress, as well as other wedding garments. Storing your wedding gown in a storage unit is an ideal place to house your treasured items.
People store wedding gowns and other heirlooms in a storage unit for a variety of reasons:
- Home storage space is simplified leaving room for clothes you wear every day.
- Moving or relocating keeps garments safe.
- Climate controlled units prevent destruction of fabrics and priceless heirlooms.
Let’s take a look at some of the best ways to store your wedding dress and why selecting professional storage can be beneficial to preserving a relic from one of the most important days of your life.
How to Store a Wedding Dress Long Term
Step #1: Have your dress professionally cleaned
A professional cleaning is recommended before storing wedding gowns, and the sooner you do it after the wedding the better. This won’t be an ordinary dry cleaning but rather, an actual preservation of the garment. A skilled cleaning and preservationist will analyze the garment’s fabric details such as fabric type, beading, embroidery and a list of other details. Preservation not only cleans the garment but will prevent the garment from yellowing which is common for white and off-white dresses. Preservation will prevent oxidization as well as prohibit mold and mildew. A professional cleaning and preservation of the gown will limit any permanent creases of the fabric. Silk and satin fabrics are most likely to leave permanent creasing if not attended to beforehand.
Step #2: Choose the best methods to preserve your wedding gown
When you meet with a specialist you’ll need to decide beforehand how you want to preserve the wedding dress. Boxing and bagging are the most common. Both methods are suitable for storing in a storage unit. Boxing a wedding dress means the gown is folded and stuffed with acid-free tissue to prevent the fabric from creasing. It is placed in an appropriately sized box made from acid-free materials and is generally not sealed so that you can periodically open to inspect for any issues.
A bagging method is what costume facilities and museums use to store priceless and one-of-a-kind pieces. Gowns are hung in a specialized bag with a padded hanger. Additional wedding accessories are also included in the bag.
The vacuum-sealed method is not used as much, due to condensation becoming trapped within the airtight plastic container. Most historical costume professionals and museum curators no longer use the vacuum-sealed method but opt for bagging or boxed alternatives.
Use a Climate Controlled Storage Unit
Wedding gowns come in all shapes and sizes, from full ballgown styles with yards of train, to small minimalist slip dresses. Storing larger dresses in your home long term can be a challenge even in the most spacious house. Keeping a wedding gown and other clothing items in a climate-controlled storage unit is an excellent alternative to storing at home.
After you decide which preservation method is best for your wedding dress keep these tips in mind when storing in a climate-controlled storage unit:
- To avoid crushing the box and the contents, always place it above any heavy boxes.
- Label the box.
- Place the box where you can access it. You’ll want to check the dress about every 2-3 years to open it and re-fluff.
- Keep the box in a cool dry spot,
- Wardrobe boxes can be used to conveniently store a hanging dress.
- Label the wardrobe box for easy identification.
- Do not place any heavy items on top of the box.
Over time, seasonal fluctuations, high humidity and dry conditions can wreak havoc on a wedding gown or any heirloom garment. It’s crucial to keep these items in a climate-controlled environment to maintain longevity and their beauty. Fairfax City Self Storage climate-controlled units are kept between 60-75 degrees, so your wedding gown will be safe from the elements 24 hours a day, year-round.
Contact Us Today
Keep your wedding gown and other heirloom clothing items safe in a space that will keep them beautiful for years to come. With over 30 years of experience in the Fairfax, Virginia area we provide quality storage solutions for your most precious memories. If you have questions about choosing the right unit for your situation and budget, contact us today or give us a call at (703) 978-1200.