The best possible way to thoroughly clean a wedding dress or evening gown before storing it is to take the dress to a high-quality, professional cleaner that specializes in wedding attire and evening gowns. However, if the gown is still very clean with only a few small stains, there are ways a person can treat or spot-clean the dress at home.
1. Determine which fabric the dress is made of. If the garment is silk, lace or a vintage gown, it's better to have it cleaned by a professional.
2. Inspect the dress thoroughly to locate any stains, including stains from perspirations, foods, liquids and makeup. If the dress is full-length, the hem will most likely have collected dirt.
3. Use a white, dry, absorbent cloth to gentle bolt the satin after applying an appropriate cleaning fluid, as described in the next step. Before applying any liquid or cleaning agent to a stain, test it on a less visible section of fabric to avoid discoloring the dress.
4. Apply hydrogen for wine, sweat and blood stains. Hydrogen peroxide can bleach fabrics, however, so don't let it sit on the fabric for too long if the dress is any color other than white. For ink stains, apply a light spray of hairspray. For oily stains such as makeup or food, apply a dry cleaning solvent or a mixture of soap and water.
5. After blotting up as much of the stain as possible, apply a few drops of white vinegar and blot again. Next, flush the area of fabric with water, blot again and then allow the area to dry.
6. To clean a dirty hem, soak the hemline for a few hours in warm water mixed with detergent, being careful to keep the rest of the dress out of the water. With a toothbrush, gently rub the hemline with the sudsy water to loosen all dirt. Flush thoroughly with water.
7. Don't hang a dress on a hanger to dry after spot cleaning it. Wet fabric is heavy, and the dress could stretch or rip. Instead, place the dress over a clean drying rack. The rack should be plastic coated or vinyl coated, as splinters from a wooden one could tear the dress or rust from a metal one could stain the dress.