The best way to store and care for your wedding dress if your big day has been postponed
If 2020 has brought about an unwelcome delay between now and the day you wear your dream dress, here's how to look after it until you can
We’re not even halfway through it yet, and already 2020 has left tens of thousands of shattered dreams in its wake, a good chunk of which belong to would-be newlyweds who have been forced to cancel their big day.
Of course, they will still get married. But that 2020 date, the one they spent months, if not years, counting down to has been uprooted and tossed further out of reach into a future that is feeling more and more unsure.
Cancelling or postponing a wedding takes a lot of work. It requires time and effort to unpick the stitches you spent months so carefully tying up. A new date has to be found, among the scramble of all the other 2020 brides and the still-hopeful 2021 brides who will have already secured their slot. Bands need to be cancelled, plane tickets refunded and, for the items already procured, careful storage and preservation is needed.
Of course, perhaps the most important of such items is the wedding dress, especially if it has already been collected. Any bride will know the painstaking care that goes into creating a dress designed uniquely for your body, and the same level of care is required when looking after your dress in the newfound stretch of time standing between now and the day you get to finally put it on, however long that may be.
“For any brides needing to store their dress until next year, my advice would be to not be tempted to try it on too many times,” says Barbaranne Heaton, founder and designer of Dubai bridalwear boutique House of Moirai. “Make-up, deodorant, sweat – they can stain the dress over time so the best thing to do is make sure it’s stored properly.”
For wedding dresses that are relatively lightweight, they should be safe in their dress bags, away from prying eyes, Heaton says. However, it’s important to ensure that it is stored at a cool temperature, especially during the hot UAE summer, so avoid hanging your dress in warm rooms that don’t get used that often.
For heavier, more ornate dresses, such as those with beading or embellishment, it’s best to be extra cautious. Roll or fold the dress within a cotton bed sheet before placing it in a special bridal box, which are available to buy online, Heaton advises. Wrapping dresses in acid-free tissue paper also works.
Another option is to ask a professional to help store your dress for you. “Most dry cleaners offer a special bridal gown preservation service, where they’ll dry clean and box your dress in the appropriate way to ensure it stays safe and keeps its newness,” says Heaton. “Don’t dry clean if not necessary, but ask if they’ll package for you without the dry cleaning.”
For the most part, brides should not be worried about storing their wedding dress for a few added months. As long as it’s in a safe place and you follow care instructions, it will remain good as new for your big day. Then, once your big day 2.0 approaches, you can visit your local bridal shop or designer to have any final alterations made and have it pressed.
“I’m seeing a lot of brides not wanting to collect their dress from the boutiques they’ve bought them from. Probably a lot to do with the fact it’s a sad reality the wedding has been postponed,” Heaton adds. “But my advice is to ensure you collect your dress as soon as you get notified. The bridal store will have overheads still and invoices from the designers, so it’s important to support the store by ensuring you collect and pay for your dress.
“Also you’re making them liable for anything that happens to your dress whilst it’s still in the shop. The safest thing to do is collect it and have it at home with you so you have peace of mind.”
Updated: May 21, 2020 04:40 PM