Wedding Gown Fun Facts

It’s difficult to teach the importance of cleaning and preserving your wedding gown after wearing it on your special day – and we see many gowns stop in months – even years! – after the wedding.  So why is it important to bring your gown to us RIGHT after the wedding?  We can get stains out before they have a chance to set, and we can give your gown it’s best chance to survive for many years to come.  Perhaps for a daughter one day?

Check out the info-graphic below for fun facts and tips about wedding gown preservation.  Don’t make it an after-thought, plan for it in your budget!

infographic - wedding gowns

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Vintage Bridal Photo Shoot

Last Thursday we had an exciting photo shoot at our location!  We invited a few lucky brides to wear their own wedding gowns, get their makeup and hair done and to pose for the camera!  We’d like to give a special thanks to Jenifer Eligh for her brilliant photography, and Nicole Werner for her beautiful hair and makeup!  Check out some photos from the day:

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Photo Gallery is now LIVE!

1956 Wedding Gown

1956 Wedding Gown

Check out our NEW Photo Gallery!

This is a small start to the hundreds of photos we have collected from the past few years of preserving wedding gowns! We are excited to share these before and after photos with you – and to really show everyone the endless possibilities that are out there for wedding gowns!

It really is possible to turn that yellowed wedding gown back into it’s beautiful white color!

See the photo gallery here.

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Wedding Gown Preservation Tips!

You spent a lot of time, money and effort finding the perfect gown.  And then there was the time, money and effort that went into the special wedding day that you will never forget.  Your gown will forever be a memory of that wonderful day, and it’d be a shame if you don’t take steps to preserve it!

Here’s a great slideshow from WeddingWire.com to explain tips on preservation for different types of dresses.

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NEW! Vintage Bridal Salon

something borrowedVINTAGE IS IN!

Check out this NEW show on TLC – and guess what, we can do that!  Our newest Treasured Garment Restoration location in the Loring Park Neighborhood of Minneapolis (10 S 13th St, Minneapolis, MN 55414) features vintage-chic decorations, a wall of bridal gowns, and a studio for altering a wedding gown and wedding party.

Something Borrowed, Something New (TLC)

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A Glimpse of History: 1943 Navy WAVES Uniform Restoration

“A very proud American woman.” That’s how Treasured Garment Restoration specialist Duane Schumann describes Mary K. Larson, a former Navy WAVES service member who allowed us the special privilege of cleaning and preserving her uniforms.

Larson joined the U.S. Naval Reserve (Women’s Reserve), or Navy WAVES for short, in 1943, with the intent of serving her country during the trying times of World War II.

Founded just a year earlier in 1942, the WAVES, which was short for Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service, was a division of the Navy consisting entirely of women.  It marked the first time women had been accepted into the Navy,  or any U.S. military branch for that matter.

Though the Army had its own version of the WAVES,  called the WACC, these women were considered to be serving with the Army, not in it! For all intensive purposes, WAVES members were an official part of the Navy.

Members of the WAVES were not allowed to serve aboard combat ships or aircraft, but this doesn’t mean their contributions weren’t important.  For example, while serving, Mary was a Cryptologic Technician Interpretive, or CTI.  CTI’s specialize in communication and intelligence work, all vitally essential military functions, and even more so during wartime.

Treasured Garment  Restoration was honored to work on Mary’s uniforms, which included a blue grey pinstriped seersucker uniform and several “dress blues”.  The garments definitely needed some work, as you can see in the before and after photos below.

“The uniforms,” Schumann said, “give us a great glimpse into history, and 1943.”

From all of us at Treasured Garment Restoration we’d like to thank Mrs. Mary K. Larson for her service to our country, and for allowing us to preserve such prized possessions!

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It’s All About the Dress!

Betty Altheide 1953

It was a warm Saturday in Minneapolis, July 18th, 1953. Betty Schuler arrived at Mt. Olivet Lutheran Church in her beautiful white eyelet layered wedding gown and she was a bit nervous, yet excited as she was about to become the bride of John Altheide.  Betty recalls that it was rather warm that day and that there was no air conditioning; “I don’t remember the temperature exactly, but I do know that no one fainted” (as was the case in many hot, summer weddings in those days).

After growing up in Edina, MN, Betty went on to college at William Woods University, an all-girls school in Fulton, MO.  John grew up around St. Louis, Mo and attended Westminister College, also in Fulton, MO.  How did they meet?  “It was December 3, 1949, we met on a blind date going to a Fraternity party”, she blushed, as John stands by, in disbelief, that she even remembers the date!

After they finished school, John went into the Air Force.  They got to see each other only about 3 or 4 times in the ensuing 2 years that he was enlisted.  After 1 year, he proposed to her.

Betty proceeded with all the wedding planning on her own since John was not around.  The ceremony was held at Mt. Olivet Lutheran Church, the reception was held at the Edina Country Club.  She purchased her dress at Dayton’s in downtown Minneapolis and remembers that the dress plus the hoop skirt she wore with it was under $100.00. She was careful with the dress at her wedding, no cake spilled, no punch spilled, no drinking at the reception—so it was looking great after the big day.

The newlywed couple then spent their honeymoon at Maddens Resort in northern Minnesota where they actually were able to spend some time together to really get to know each other.  John, having been in the military for a couple of years, had been doing his own laundry, and Betty was alarmed to find that he didn’t spend much time sorting his colors—all of his underwear was pink! They then moved to St. Louis, Missouri after the wedding.  It seems that everything worked out through the years — Betty and John just celebrated their 59th Wedding Anniversary this summer—and they’re looking forward to number 60 in 2013!

In the spring of 2012 when Betty and John and their children were cleaning out their nooks and crannies, they came upon the dress, yellowed and stained, and it was sent to Treasured Garment Restoration for evaluation.  If the gown was so well protected the day of the wedding, what happened, then, with the horrible spills we saw on it when it came to be restored? “Well”, Betty explained, “35 years ago –when the dress was 25 years old—there was a party amongst our friends and the requirement was to bring or wear something from your wedding.  So, I wore my wedding gown!”  Amazingly, Betty was still able to wear the gown after 25 years and 2 children and her only comment was “yes, I fit into it, but I didn’t sit down all night”.

Fortunately, this spill was only 35 years old.               After careful testing, TGR was able to
If it had been spilled 59 years ago, it is possible          determine that the latent stains – aka
that these stains may have created holes                      caramelized sugar stains would be
in the fabric.                                                                                   able to be removed!

We, at Treasured Garment Restoration, have seen a number of things show up on vintage wedding dresses that can re-ignite memories of the day… and we are truly passionate about restoring and preserving the each unique dress along with the memories it symbolizes for our customers!

One thing remains constant– it’s all about THE DRESS!  Brides will spend countless hours looking at photos, magazines, (now Pinterest) and shopping for the one dress that makes them feel like a princess for the day.  Each dress is unique and could tell a story of its own—if only a dress could talk!

1953 Gown, oxidized (yellowed) and stained.                                      After – restored to white in 2012!
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Super Sammy’s Stay at the TGR Spa

We recently had a very special guest at Treasured Garment Restoration Spa and Salon – Super Sammy the Sock Monkey!

You may have seen Sammy relaxing in our lobby recently while waiting for his town car to pick him up.

While staying with us we were able to get an exclusive TGR interview with Sammy.

TGR: First of all Sammy thank you for taking the time to sit down with us. We know how busy you are!

Sammy: Not a problem; I’ve been having a wonderful time relaxing and getting “refreshed”!

TGR: Sammy, can you give us your full name and title to start?

Sammy: Sure! It’s Super Sammy, Ambassador for Genuine Monkeez and Friends.

TGR: Can you tell us a little more about the work you do as Ambassador?

Sammy: I spend most of my traveling. I’m a pretty busy Sock Monkey you know! I spend a lot of time in showrooms across the country, having my picture taken, greeting people, and, of course, eating bananas!

TGR: Sounds glamorous!

Sammy: It is. I love spending time meeting new friends, helping out with charities and visiting specialty retail shops. Truth be told, it does get a little tiring though.

TGR: Oh, how so?

Sammy: Well, one of the reasons I stopped in here was to get some much needed rest and relaxation. You may have noticed I was a bit dirty when I arrived. I even had a few… tears!

TGR: Can you talk a little about what we did for you here at the Treasured Garment Spa Sammy?

Sammy: Of course.  I started with a luxurious soak, a great way to let the cares of the world melt away. We moved on to some deep fabric work to really get all the dirt I had collected out. This was followed by a nice warm towel and some time in the “dry room”. Finally, all my little tears and nicks were tended to; before I knew it, I was good as new!

TGR: Well Sammy, again, we really appreciate the time you’ve taken to speak with us. It’s been a pleasure having you! Please come back and see us again!

For more information on Sammy and Genuine Monkeez & Friends, please visit Midwest CBK’s website.

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