Preserving Your Christening Gown or Christening Outfit
You’ve now selected the perfect christening gown or christening outfit. Are you prepared to preserve your heirloom for the enjoyment of future generations? After your child’s christening, follow these steps to keep your memories safe:
Be sure to follow the dry clean or hand-wash instructions on the clothing tag of your baptism gown or blessing outfit. Stains and body oils can irreparably discolor the fabric. If you hand-wash the gown or outfit, there are things you should avoid. Do not use strong soaps, chlorine bleach, fabric softeners, or starch. After hand washing, be sure to rinse the christening dress or outfit to eliminate detergent deposit.
Once the blessing gown is dry, fill it with clean, acid-free tissue. The tissue will prevent hard creases that can ruin the fabric. Extra tissue can be stuffed into the outfit’s pleats and slipped between the fabric layers.
Place the christening outfit in a 100 percent cotton muslin garment bag. Plastic or vinyl bags are unacceptable for long-term preservation since garments need to breathe. Additionally, you should not seal or wrap a cardboard box containing heirloom christening clothing. Never pack mothballs with your christening apparel since they can ruin fabric over time.
Also, avoid storing the christening suit or gown with metal items. If you have purchased a bracelet for your special occasion, you can find the perfect display frame at One Small Child. If it is not monogrammed or personalized, be sure to label the container with a name and event title.
Store the christening gown in a dark, cool, dry place (for example, in a closet or under a bed). Avoid storing the box or bag in places where the temperature or humidity fluctuate. For example, do not store the gown or outfit in the basement or attic. You should store it at a relative humidity of 55 percent and at 75 degrees Fahrenheit.
Check your outfit once in a while to ensure that it is maintaining its beauty. When you handle your christening heirloom, wear cotton gloves–skin oils can discolor fabric.
When using your treasured christening gown or outfit again, remove it from the storage container and air it out for several days. You might need to steam the item to remove wrinkles; iron only as a last resort, and only on a low setting.
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