Storing wedding items like the wedding dress, tuxedo, photos, bouquet, or even the cake can be tricky.

Storage West is a great place to store your wedding items. Some of our locations offer air cooled units. This can provide your items with the temperature and environment that is perfect for wedding item storage. We even sell some of the supplies you would need for storing your items; like boxes, protective coverings, wrapping paper, and plastic wrapping.

Here are some tips on how to store those items and keep them in great condition for years to come.

Storing the Wedding Dress

Many brides will tell you that the dress is the most important part of the wedding. Thus, it requires the most care to store and preserve. Packaging materials and the cleaning method are important ways to keep the dress in excellent condition. Most dress preservationists say to start planning your storing methods a few weeks before the big day. Some stains or cleanings won’t be able to wait till last minute.

Start off with what packaging materials or storage materials you are going to use for your wedding dress; keeping in mind that all storage materials should be clean and completely acid free. If you are going to store your dress in a box, make sure to use acid free paper and if possible use a ph-neutral box. If you are going to hang your dress, do not hang it on an ordinary wood or wire hanger – the weight of the dress will cause the material to stretch and distort. Use a thicker plastic or padded hanger instead, and you can go with an airtight or loose fitting bag, making sure to reduce the vapors or moisture within the storing bag. Also, keep your dress in a cool, dark and dry environment with about 50% humidity. Most dress professionals say that light and heat are what causes the most damage to your dress.

Cleaning the Wedding Dress

For cleaning, some wedding gown specialists use a wet method of cleaning, which is washing the dress by hand with gentle cleansers that take away noticeable stains. Other dress specialists use a more traditional dry-cleaning method, which includes pretreating the stains and then putting the dress in a dry-clean machine. If left uncleaned before storing, unseen stains, moisture, and odors can oxidize, causing a dress to yellow over time.

Handling the dress after storage is fine with a few easy suggestions:

• Be sure to wash your hands of any natural oils or dirt and grime before handling your dress.
• Make sure you haven’t just put lotion on your hands, or have on any perfumes; these can transfer to the material of your dress. Also be mindful of your nail polish.
• It is best to have a pair of clean white cotton gloves, the more precaution you take, the longer your dress will last.

If all of these things sound too scary and you are afraid you will ruin your dress, search your local area for wedding dress preservationists. These professionals will take the stress out of the cleaning and preservation of your dress, and then all you will have to do is find a great place to store it.

The Tuxedo

You won’t take out and wear your tuxedo as much as your business suits, but when you do have the opportunity to wear a tuxedo; you are going to want it in tip top shape and looking sharp.

Most suit makers will tell you that using a good fabric suit carrier like a breathable cotton suit bag is the best way to store your tuxedo; no folding, so no creases. You will want to try not to dry clean the suit too much, sparingly if possible, but enough to keep away any stains or odors. Keeping the suit in a cool, dark and dry environment with about 50% humidity is recommended. Also, adding in a moth ball substitute in the bag is best, to keep your suit from any damage.

Also, keep your suit linens, ties, cuff links, and all other accessories with your suit, because last thing you want to do is be wearing your clean and preserved tuxedo without the tie that goes with it.

The Cake

A wedding cake tradition is keeping a piece or a tier of the cake for the first year anniversary. Proper preservation and storage of the cake allows for this tradition. Some newlyweds allow the caterer or cake baker to store this for them, but a DIY option is available and easy to do.

First thing to do with your piece of cake or tier of cake is to remove any decorative additions so that you can wrap the cake airtight before putting it in the freezer. You don’t want to have any room for airflow happening underneath the wrapping of the cake, giving it the chance for spoiling. Allow the icing to harden; keep in mind that buttercream icing and fondant are very soft. Once the cake is hardened, you will begin with plastic wrap, pressing the plastic directly onto the surface of the cake. Try to get as airtight as you can. Then, apply at least two layers of foil. Remember that smells from other items in the freezer can transfer, so more foil means less chance for a smelly cake. A good tip is keeping that box of baking soda in the freezer to help with smell transfer.

When it comes time for a piece of cake a year later, take the cake out of the freezer and place in the fridge the night before, then leave it at room temperature on the counter for five or six hours unwrapped – Then it is ready to eat!

The Flowers

The wedding bouquet is now one of those things that can be preserved and saved for many married years to come; and there are a couple of ways to choose from on how you want to preserve it.

A newer way to preserve the wedding bouquet is to use an epoxy resin, preserving them in decorative shapes. To make a globe size counter display, get a spherical mold from a local craft store. Fill the mold halfway with the epoxy resin and delicately arrange the flowers the way you want them to be in the fluid. Once in place, fill the remainder of the mold with epoxy resin to the top and let it dry. After drying, take off the mold, leaving you with a wedding bouquet that is in bloom forever.

Another way to preserve your bouquet is to press your flowers flat and frame them; turning your bouquet into a work of art. Take the flowers and spread them out on cleaned parchment paper, then laying another piece on top. Enclose the flowers within a book and add weight atop the book to allow the flowers to press. You will want to leave them like this for 7 to 10 days, allowing the flowers to flatten and dry. Once done, you can arrange them and frame then, preserving their beauty forever.

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