You may have your gown or you're picking it up soon, but if you're not getting hitched in the coming weeks it's important to know how to store your wedding dress to guarantee it looks perfect when you need it.
We've obviously seen a lot of couples postpone their wedding day due to recent events, many have asked us how to store their wedding dress while they wait for the big day to come. So we thought we would share our advice on how to keep your dream dress looking fabulous while you wait for the date, the same tips also apply post-wedding too - for those of you wanting a keepsake or something old to pass down.
1. Follow the Advice of your Boutique or Designer
While we've added lots of tips below, the best people to ask about care for your particular dress is your boutique, or bridal designer. They'll have knowledge of your individual dress; the fabrics and embellishment and how the dress hangs over time. So make them your first port of call if you have any questions. If you bought your wedding dress from Brides & Bustles or Confetti & Curves please do get in touch with any questions you may have about looking after your gown.
2. Store your Gown Somewhere Cool, Dry & Dark
As with any dry goods you pick up from the supermarket, wedding dresses are at their happiest in cool, dry and dark places (apart from your big day, that's their happiest day!) Keep your gown away from direct sun and don't store it alongside anything that could be smelly or dirty as that odour may well transfer.
Remove any plastic covering from around your dress - tissue paper is better if you need to protect beading, and when it comes to a garment bag, breathable is best. It's also wise to add some silica gel packs to absorb any moisture.
3. Hang your Wedding Dress Correctly
If you're unsure of when your wedding dress will be used and its left hanging long-term, then that could damage your gown, especially if it's a heavy piece. Please don't hang it by the straps or the shoulders, instead use the hanging ribbons inside and let them take the weight. Once they are on, make sure the dress is supported evenly, not too much pressure put on either side.
Don't go for a cheap, lightweight hanger that you'd usually use for shirts or summer dresses, invest in a hanger that is strong and will offer padded support. Make sure the dress has plenty of space around it in the wardrobe - if it's crammed in, it will only get creased and potentially damaged.
If you have the space, consider lying your wedding dress down flat. This is a good way to store your wedding dress if it is cut on the bias or if it has lots of beading. Just be sure to get it out every now and again to let it hang fully or to puff it out, it's always nice to take a trip down memory lane after the big day anyway!
4. Keep Your Wedding Dress Out of Sight
You may be tempted to pop your dress on while you do the hoovering or take it out for a daily inspection, but please resist! If you have a long lead up to your wedding, the last thing you want is to become tired of it or have second thoughts. Put it away and almost keep it a surprise for yourself, as well as everyone else.
Besides your feelings about the dress, you may risk getting marks on it or damaging it each time you pull it out. Make sure you have clean, dry hands when you touch the dress and maybe even consider getting some white gloves.
Also, if you have small children or pets who might be able to access your gown, store your wedding dress away from where it can be accessed easily. Keep it away from any house guests too, you don't want them taking a peek!
5. Shoes, Jewellery & Hair Accessories
Bridal shoes and jewellery are best stored in their original boxes, with any necessary padding around them - again remove any plastic. Make sure they are somewhere safe, dry and that you note where you left them - you don't want a mad panic trying to find your wedding earrings in 6 months time!
6. Veil Storage
Bridal veils can be hung or folded (you may need to steam it with the latter), but to avoid your veil getting snagged or damaged, keep it in a breathable garment bag, or wrapped in tissue. Again, keep it out of direct sunlight, and use some silica gel packs to keep it moisture-free during storage.
7. Taking your Pieces Out of Storage
When your wedding dress and accessories have been stored away for a long time, it's a good idea to take everything out about two months before the big day. Go through a quick dress rehearsal with your MOH or Mum and that will give you enough time to make any fixes or alterations needed. Weight fluctuations are normal (especially during a national lockdown...) so don't stress if your gown is a little loose or tight, take it to a good alterations service, and they'll make sure it fits perfectly. Try on your shoes and lingerie too, just in case and check any buttons, zips or clasps to make sure they're still working.
You may want to freshen up the fabrics, so look into having your dress professionally steamed, or hiring/buying your own steamer to DIY at home.