Cleaning a Wedding Dress?

How do I clean a do not wash/do not dry clean dress? I am getting married in June and purchased my dress from a thrift store. It isn't terribly dirty or anything; I could wear it as is, but I'd like to clean it to make sure that it looks its best. The label says "do not wash, do not dry clean professionally, spot clean only."


Any ideas for how I can clean my dress? I attached the stock photo of it.

Thanks so much!

By stephanie from Anchorage, AK

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October 24, 20090 found this helpful
Best Answer

Use vinegar to clean the dress. I had under arm stains on mine, the vinegar works just put it in the sun. After you apply the vinegar, it may take a few days. Re apply every day till spots ago away, good luck.

January 4, 20111 found this helpful
Best Answer

Gorgeous dress! I'm sure you can use some type of fabric steamer to deodorize and get small specks of dirt out. If you know anyone who has a hand held shark steamer that would be perfect since it has a fabric attachment.


Good luck, and what a thrifty find!

January 4, 20112 found this helpful
Best Answer

After my daughter's bridal portraits were made, we noticed a few blemishes on her gown; including grass stains. We took the gown to the bridal shop that it was purchased from for suggestions and the owner pulled out a container of Clorox "Bleach free" disinfectant wipes and proceeded to clean every blemish; even the grass stains. She stated it could even be used on colors. I never would have believed it if I had not witnessed it firsthand. Needless to say, I now keep these wipes in my home and office just for this purpose. If you are skeptic and I wouldn't blame you for being so, with your wedding gown, try this on another piece of clothing in your wardrobe. Congratulations on your upcoming marriage. Remember, if you try this, bleach free wipes.

August 31, 20160 found this helpful

The only problem with using bleach is that it can "as I call it" eat the fabric and in fact make it more yellow or even brown. I right now have my mother's wedding dress that is over 40 years old and my wedding dress that is about 14 almost 15 years old that I am trying to find someone to clean both. My mother's is really yellow but it wasn't a really white gown to start with, more of an off white colo, and the outer layer is all lace but I am afraid that whatever the lace is ruined and no hope of it being cleaned. My dress on the other hand needs a drink stain removed and the mother ball smell banished and then stored properly so no real big deal with it.


I am hoping I can find someone that can clean the lace part of my mother's dress and then I can have the rest replaced without losing the main factor of the dress, the lace... makes me wish I was more of an expert on fabric and how to clean it. As a nurse that had to wear white at work and have to deal with well water I have always found that dishwasher powder or liquid and hot water keeps whites white and won't leave the gross brown color of bleach. And my other go to for smells is vinegar. It works wonders I tell you.

January 8, 20110 found this helpful
Best Answer

Use baking soda, with a clean tooth brush. This will absorb the stains and dirt spots, then wipe with dry fluffy towel The gown is beautiful, just beautiful!

September 13, 20160 found this helpful

If you are going to hang this dress up, and use it again soon, spot cleaning will do.
If you are "keeping" this dress, it has to be cleaned of any organic debris-it will discolor or rot. Take it to a dry cleaner, and get his advice.


I would not do a preservation, (actually, why not take lots of pictures, and donate it)but it must be clean to save even for a few years. Sadly, I learned this with a lace tablecloth. It may look clean, don't trust, clean it!


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January 3, 20110 found this helpful

I'm sorry I don't have an answer for you.I just had to comment on your gown. May your wedding day be as beautiful as your unique gown. It's breathtaking. Good Bless.

January 7, 20110 found this helpful

If you were able to find a stock photo of the dress, you should be able to find the manufacturing company. You might contact them to see what they say about cleaning it.

January 7, 20111 found this helpful

I work for a thrift store and many soiled gowns come in. As strange as this may seem, this has worked on every single one. I hang the garment in the yard and hose it down with cold water from the outside spigot. I have done this to colored material, white and different fabrics. It seems people take the garment off with cake on it, etc and hang it up for a few years then donate.


The worse was a flower girl dress, full of cake, candy and dirt. If there is a really bad spot, I scrub it with a toothbrush while hanging. All the wrinkles come out, too. It is the cold tap water and hanging that make it a success, I think. Would not put in the washer.


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January 7, 20110 found this helpful

Wow! You found that at a thrift store! I don't know how to clean it, but it has to be the most beautiful and unique dress I have seen in a very long time. Best of luck!

January 9, 20110 found this helpful

Thank so so much to everyone for your good wishes, compliments, and ideas! I feel like I've got a whole bunch of encouraging and wonderful bridesmaids! I'm sure I'll be able to get the dress nicely cleaned now. Thanks again, so much, for your help and comments. Thank you, thank you thank you! :)




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