Taking care of a textile collection or a special garment like a wedding gown requires more than just cleaning and buying an archival lig-free box. It is also important that the outside of the boxed gown be wrapped with a unbleached, unsized cotton print cloth or muslin fabric to prevent insect invasion, dust build up and moisture damage to the box.
Your boxed textile should be stored flat in a cool and dry location, like under the bed or in a closet on the middle shelf. The location should be clear of any plastics, cedar or mothballs. These are all things that emit gases and can cause oxidation and uneven aging.
If the location is prone to moisture or mildew, we would recommend that a rechargeable dehumidifier made of amorous silica be used to help reduce the humidity of the air. A rechargeable desiccant is best since it can be reused after cooking down the moisture. Other museum products are available for controlled Monitored Storage (please call us for more information).
Textile conservators recommend that a gown or any other textile, should be removed from the storage box inspected, refolded and documented on a regular basis. Refolding is important in order to prevent damages from permanent fabric breaks or wrinkling where the fold line falls. During the refold, the owner has the opportunity to see how the gown is aging and whether or not any sugar-based stains or other staining is appearing in the aging process. Documentation is also a key to success. It serves as a reminder of the date last inspected as well as, providing family information to the future wearer.