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Wedding Gowns

At Hillary’s, we understand that your wedding gown is one of your most precious possessions. Your gown represents one of the most important events of your life and should be treated and cleaned with special attention. Whether you are wearing an antique gown on your special day or buying new, your gown deserves quality care before and after the wedding.  

What You Should Know 

Today’s bridal gowns are made from satin, taffeta, chiffon, organza, brocade, and lace and are accented with delicate trims, such as beads, seed pearls, sequins, embroidery, lace, and appliqué. Because of the complexity make sure to ask the salesperson:  

  • Whether the dress is able to be dry-cleaned 
  • Whether the dress has a care label attached 
  • Is the trim glued or sewn on?  
  • Will the beads and pearls dissolve when cleaned?  

The more you know about your dress the better able you are to preserve your investment for many years to come. 

Restoration of Delicate and Antique Gowns 

If you are wearing an heirloom or antique gown, please allow plenty of time for professional cleaning and alterationsMany fabrics naturally yellow with age, therefore gowns should be carefully checked for any discoloration. At Hillary’s, we understand the restoration of delicate and antique fabrics, and often yellowing can be corrected.  

Preserving Your Wedding Dress 

Many brides want to preserve their dress as a keepsake, perhaps for their own daughter to wear on her wedding day. As professional cleaners, we recommend that you have the dress dry-cleaned before storage as the dress may have invisible stains from food, beverages, and body oil. If stains are not properly cleaned before storage, they may become permanent. When it comes time to clean your gown, bring it to any Hillary’s Cleaners location and we will professionally dry or wet-clean it according to the care instructionsWith our proper care, your wedding gown will remain a keepsake. 

Storing Your Wedding Gown 

Unfortunately, no process or storage method can fully protect your gown from yellowing or possible deterioration of fabrics. There are, however, several steps you can take to protect your garment: 

  • Ask your Hillary’s associate to pack the gown in one of our special storage boxes that will help prevent contamination. 
  •  Store your gown in a cool, dry place. 
  • Do not store in basements (risk of mildew) or attics (risk of heat damage and yellowing).  
  • If you are storing the gown on a hanger, have straps sewn to the waistline to relieve pressure on the shoulders from the weight of the skirt 
  • Wrap the dress in a protective white sheet or muslin covering. 
  • The bodice of the dress should be stuffed with white tissue paper to prevent wrinkles. 
  • Fabric-covered buttons, pins, sponge padding, and perspiration shields should be removed and stored separately to avoid damage to the fabric.  
  • Never store headpieces, veils, shoes, or other accessories with your gown. 

Inspect your gown from time to time during storage. Stains not initially apparent could appear later and should be tended to and cleaned immediately. Preserving the quality of your wedding gown may be the finest gift you can give yourself and a loved one. 


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