How much do you charge to preserve my wedding dress?
The cost of our exclusive conservation, cleaning, and preservation service begins at $695.00 and is determined by the dress construction and the complexity of the assignment. All clients are provided an estimate prior to placing an order.
Do you offer cleaning only services that do not include preservation?
Yes! We offer cleaning and mending services for both bridal attire before and after the wedding and for couture pieces. Prices are assignment dependent and can be estimated before an order is placed.
How long should I wait to send my dress to you?
Stains cause damage to textile fibers over time. It is advisable to have your dress cleaned and preserved as soon after the wedding as is practical. Generally, you can safely wait several months after the ceremony unless you notice specific stains such as red wine that are highly acidic or contain a dye component. These issues should be addressed as quickly as possible to avoid permanent damage to the fabric. Until you take your gown to be cleaned and preserved, keep it in a dark, dry place, folded or rolled in a clean white sheet. Hanging is not recommended as it can cause stress to the fabric and create distortion. Do not store your gown in a zipped up plastic garment bag. Plastics can emit gases that will oxidize the fabric.
Should I send my veil, slip, and other accessories?
We ask that you send only your wedding dress ensemble and veil. Please do not include shoes or undergarments such as crinolines, garters, or slips. These items often contain different kinds of unstable materials. They are not designed to last forever and often deteriorate more quickly than the wedding dress itself. Even worse, packing these items with your wedding dress can cause the dress fabric or decoration to deteriorate too!
How do I get my dress to you?
There are several convenient, complimentary options for wedding gown cleaning and preservation orders: First, we have a national relationship with UPS and we can locate the nearest UPS store of your choosing and notify them when you will be dropping off your wedding gown. The UPS store will package your wedding gown according to our strict instructions and ship it to us. We also offer complimentary pick up in Los Angeles and from most neighborhoods in Manhattan. For all other projects clients are responsible for shipping items to us for evaluation.
My wedding has been postponed, what do I do now?
We can pack your gown in our proprietary archival materials so you can safely keep it until you are ready to start your alterations. Keep in mind that the garment bag provided by your bridal salon is not a safe long term environment for the gown.
I bought a sample gown; do I need to have the gown altered before cleaning?
No, gowns should be cleaned prior to starting your alterations. Your seamstress will be the last person to see you with the gown to ensure that everything has been tailored to suit your body.
Do you offer a warranty?
J. Scheer & Co. offers a 50-year written warranty assuring you that no discoloration or weakening of the fabric or other components will occur as a result of our processes. Our warranty, like our in-depth testing and cleaning services, is an indication of our commitment to fine apparel preservation.
How much should I insure my dress for?
You do not need to purchase insurance. Your wedding dress is fully insured by us for the replacement value, from the time it leaves your hands until it is returned to you.
What are the shipping and handling costs?
Shipping and handling charges are included in the estimate for all bridal cleaning and preservation orders from the lower 48 states. There is a shipping surcharge for orders emanating from Hawaii and Alaska. All other orders may incur a shipping charge. Ask your representative if additional shipping charges apply.
Will you use a cardboard box to store my dress?
No! Even (so-called) "acid-free" cardboard boxes can re-acidify over time, often in three to five years, and costume conservators recommend replacing these boxes periodically to ensure the proper long-term archival preservation of valuable textiles such as wedding gowns. Cardboard also absorbs moisture, which will promote the growth of mold and mildew within the storage chamber. We preserve your dress in a completely archival textile storage box made of fluted polypropylene. A chemically inert polymer, it is non-absorbent, provides more complete moisture protection, and resists fluctuations in temperature and humidity—environmental variants that can cause permanent damage to fabric and non-woven dress components such as metal closures and trimmings. Our proprietary boxes are made of the same material as those used by The Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York to store their collections of historic costumes.
Can I look at my dress after it is preserved?
Absolutely. In fact, we encourage you to open the box and inspect your dress regularly. When you remove the box, remember that your skin contains oils and salts that can damage delicate fabrics. It is important that you wash and dry your hands carefully before handling your dress. Museum professionals often wear plain white cotton gloves like those we have supplied to you. Clear a space that is large enough to place the box while leaving room to remove the dress. Remove the top of the box, and place it where you won't accidentally step on it. Untie the bow and open the nomex covering. Slide both hands under the whole dress and lift it out of the box. Place on the space you have cleared. As you unfold the dress, note the way we packed it. You may wish to keep the archival tissue in the storage box so you don't lose or step on it.
If I look won't I break the seal?
We NEVER seal a dress in a box. Sealing traps moisture in the box, promoting mold and mildew growth, which will stain and weaken the fibers of your dress. Also, if you open a sealed box, the rush of air into the box will rapidly reoxygenate the chamber, causing fiber deterioration. Sealing the box also denies you the opportunity to fully enjoy the beauty of your dress outside of the chamber.
How and where do I store my wedding dress after it is preserved?
Our special preservation storage materials were chosen to protect your dress from exposure to moisture, fire, dust, acidity and light, but successful long-term preservation depends on you. Where and how you keep the dress will have an effect on its condition. Store the box flat, with the lid side facing up. When you move the box, carry it so that it is as level as possible. We have packed your dress so that it will not shift under normal circumstances, but flat storage will ensure this remains true. Protect your dress from extremes of temperature and humidity, as these factors will encourage rapid deterioration. All fibers degrade under high temperatures, and many may discolor permanently. High humidity encourages mold and mildew, even on clean fabrics; therefore, it is not wise to store your dress in an attic or cellar. Choose a storage place within your living quarters, but without much traffic. Inspect the box occasionally (once every 18 months is fine).