Wedding Traditions Around the World

Whether or not you’re into the traditions of weddings, they exist in every country and culture you can think of.  Here in the United States we have tossing the bouquet and not seeing the bride before the wedding, but what do a few other countries do to celebrate a day of love and fun?

 

China

In China, the date is not so easily set.  Most couples will consult a fortune teller to find a date for their wedding using their birthdays and traditional Chinese lucky numbers. On the morning of the wedding, the groom and groomsmen would make their way to the bride’s home where he and his friends would have to negotiate and haggle with the bridesmaids to enter the house.  This usually included using his wits and money to bribe himself in.  Once the offer was good enough the groom would join the bride’s parents for tea as a parting ritual.  Weddings in China are a way for a family to show their wealth, therefore meals are typically 10-12 courses with very expensive meal options.  Along with expensive food, the bride and groom would change from traditional Chinese wedding garb to a western style dress, and depending on the family’s wealth they may have several wardrobe changes after that.

Scotland

Weddings in Scotland are rich, colorful, and involve a lot more than just wearing a kilt.  Unlike our US bachelor parties, the groomsmen will capture the groom, cover him in feathers, soot, and flour then parades him through the village as they yell and make a scene.  This ritual is not as commonly practiced anymore but is still seen in a few rural areas of Scotland.  For the bride’s apparel, they wear a traditional white dress but keep a sixpence hidden in their shoe and a sprig of white heather in their bouquets to bring good luck to their marriage.  The groom traditionally pays for the wedding dress as the bride buys the “wedding sark” or shirt worn by the groom.  Before the ceremony it is tradition to do the wedding walk, this is where the groom accompanies the maid of honor with the bride and best man following.  After the ceremony, the newlyweds leave as a couple and the best man and maid of honor leave together.  For the wedding walk to yield good luck they must cross water twice.  At the reception, the traditional grand march is often the first dance to take place.  It begins with the couple marching to bagpipes followed by the bridal party, parents, and lastly the guests! Finally, the guests accompany the bride and groom to their house, a piece of cake is broken over the bride’s head, and the groom carries her over the threshold to protect her from bad spirits.  The minister then blesses the house, and the newlyweds, after this the ceremony is finished.

Egypt

Egyptian weddings have taken a lot of cues from Western traditions, but still, have some very interesting activities.  The night before the wedding the bride and all her friends and family will get together for a Henna party.  Henna is believed to be good luck, and in ancient times it was customary to dip your whole hands and feet in henna, now that is outdated and most time an artist is hired to work on the women.  In most weddings, there is a colorful procession to take the bride to the groom’s house.  Beautifully decorated cars take both families to the venue accompanied by a noisy parade.  The marriage is typically performed by a Maazon, and once the marriage certificate is signed the bride and groom will put their hands together and press their thumbs against one another’s to be covered with a white handkerchief and bound.  A reading from the Quran is read and the marriage is confirmed.  The handkerchief is then removed by the Maazon or a single man to be blessed for his own wedding.  Legally the couple is married but can not stay together until after the reception.  Unlike the US, Egyptian receptions can happen the next day, next week, or even a year after the ceremony has taken place! Most Egyptian receptions start around 10 pm and go on till the next morning.  At the end of the night, the couple retires to their bridal suite while the guests throw wheat into the air, which is a sign of fertility!

 

With all these difference between countries, a few things stay the same: a couple commits their lives together, everybody has a great time, and some serious dry cleaning is needed after! Let us take care of all your wedding needs no matter what traditions you put your clothes through!

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St Croix Cleaners makes this the Best Prom Ever

You spent weeks searching for the perfect dress, now how to keep it perfect for prom.  St Croix Cleaners has you covered with all our before and after Prom Services!

Alterations

As soon as you get your gown from the dress salon you’ll want to set up an appointment with your local St Croix Cleaners’ Alteration Specialist.  Most prom dresses are designed to be altered and are made several inches longer than other formal gowns.  This means that hemming is pretty common when you buy your dress. All of our alteration specialists can take-in, let-out and completely redesign your dress if necessary.  You’ll want to start this process 1-2 months before prom depending on how much work you need to be done.

Wrinkles

A week before the big day you can bring in your dress to St  Croix Cleaners so we can release any wrinkles that may have happened during transport or alterations.  On the day of the prom, you’ll want to make sure your gown is pushed to the side of your seat as much as possible.  This reduces wrinkles from the car ride and makes sure no one sits or steps on it!

Small Stains

Now leading up to a few days before prom, you might decide to get a spray tan.  If you do, make sure to do it 2-3 days before the dance.  It gives the dye time to settle into your skin so it doesn’t transfer onto the dress.  Spray tans love to stick to fabric and can permanently stain the dress if it doesn’t get cleaned off.  If any spots of make-up or food get on the gown, as you are getting ready or at the dance, we have a little trick to getting them out! This trick is only for polyester or synthetic gowns. If your dress is silk, cotton, or another natural fiber you will want to bring it to St Croix Cleaners as soon as possible. Take some warm water and lightly dab the spot.  Then put some pH neutral soap; such as blue dawn dish soap, or a Woolite pen on the spot and rise with water.  Let the dress air dry for a few minutes and you should be good to go.

After the Ball

You’ve danced the night away and had an amazing time, now what?  The day after the dance you’ll want to take a good look at your dress and determine if there are any saturated stains, tears, or any damaged beading and sequins.  If you spilled anything clear like soda or sparkling grape juice on your gown it will dry like nothing is there but will eventually discolor the dress and make it very hard to get out.  Once you’ve looked over your gown you’ll want to bring it to your local St Croix Cleaners. Most gowns need individual care to best remove hemline stains and other spots.

It is best to send it to a professional dry cleaner rather than cleaning at home! Any dress with beads or sequins can get severally damaged in regular washing machines. Most of the time beads are attached on large strands by monofilament thread; similar to fishing line, making it prone to breakage. Silk and other natural fibered dresses like cotton and linen have to be dry cleaned, washing this type of gown will cause shrinkage and distortion of the fabric.

Last Steps

After the cleaning is done, whether your planning on keeping or selling the gown, you’ll want to take the St Croix Cleaners’ biodegradable plastic bag off the dress.  Make sure to keep the gown on a padded hanger if you plan on keeping it in a closet, this will take some of the weight off the fabric so that it does not deform the dress.  A better option would be to lay the dress flat in a spare bedroom or closet, this takes all weight off the dress.  You’ll want to put a cotton sheet over it or a fabric garment bag to prevent dust and discoloration.  For long term storage, anything over a year, you’ll want to consider an acid free box with acid free tissue paper.  This ensures no discoloration or distortion for the life of the dress.

Whether you just got your dress or the magical night is over, St Croix Cleaners has you covered from start to finish! Let us be a part of your high school rite of passage!

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70 Year Old Pin Up Dress Restored

Rolf Armstrong & Jewel Flowers circa 1940

Jewel Flowers was an iconic American pinup model from North Carolina.  She was a favorite of well-known WWII pin-up artist, Rolf Armstrong, and collaborated on many portraits with him during her 20-year modeling career.  The two met when Armstrong posted an ad in the New York Times and Flowers responded to the ad.  This resulted in featuring her in over 50 pin-ups.  Flowers often wore custom made, elaborate gowns or costumes in her portraits.  

When Lynn Ficher brought in a vintage dress worn by Jewel Flowers – it had been over 70 years since the dress was modeled by Flowers in an Armstrong’s portrait (shown below).  Ficher brought the gown to Treasured Garment Restoration, a division of St Croix Cleaners early November.  Considering the age of the vintage gown, the skirt was in fairly good condition. However, the purple velvet bodice of the dress was deteriorating and not in a condition where it could survive any cleaning or restoration method. 


 

Kat Clobes, our Treasured Garment team member worked with Ficher and the decision was made to rebuild the purple bodice of the dress and restore the dress close to its original beauty.

“The overall integrity of the green skirt was in good shape so we cleaned that to the best of our ability. As for the bodice, we rebuilt it from scratch using a similar but less chemically treated purple velvet that will last much longer than the original”


“Girl on a Beam”



The purple and green vintage dress inspired at least two well-known portraits featuring Jewel.  You can see in the before picture of the boned velvet bodice how the fabric was deteriorating. The dress needed extra support to prevent the fabric from separating from the skirt. Precise measurements were taken of the bust and it was completely remade and reattached.

 This vintage dress that was such a piece of World War II pin-up art history was cleaned and preserved with care and will now be able to be displayed for years to come.

If you have an old or vintage treasured garment tucked away and would like to learn more about restoration and preservation options, we’d love to talk with you!  You can reach our team of specially trained Treasured Garment experts to set up a free garment inspection at (651) 705-8623

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80’s Gown Redesigned for Modern Bride

During its time, this gown was right on trend. But now it’s a little hard to relate to the gigantic bows and puffed sleeves! Treasured Garment Restoration has been lucky enough to redesign old gowns to meet modern brides’ tastes and still serve as a great tribute to a mother or grandmother.

Lori Dress Before (1)

This dress (pictured) is a great example of 80’s bridal fashion.  It features everything from the large puffed sleeves to bows and ruffles. By just looking at this dress, it’s hard to envision an idea of how it could be redesigned. Our highly trained alteration specialists can walk you through a redesign and help you create exactly what want for your big day. Don’t believe us? Check this out:

Lori Dress redesign 1

It’s hard to believe this is even the same dress. Our creative specialists removed the sleeves, bows and ruffles.  They updated the neckline and added new elements to the skirt while keeping the integrity of the original dress.  Brand new lace was added along with new pearl trim. All motifs from the original dress were kept, just readjusted to suit the new design. Look closely the waist line  and you can see that it was changed from the “sweetheart” to a more modern waistline . If you have questions or are interested in doing something like this to your dress give us a call!

We love a new project. To find a location nearest you visit our location page or call one of our 2 bridal alterations’ specialists: 1)Woodbury location off Valley Creek Road (651) 315-8870, or 2)  in Minneapolis-Loring Park (free parking on site) at (651) 927-8198.

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Nichole’s Wedding Gown Preservation

A wedding dress is one of the most important purchases a bride will ever make. To kick off our Real Brides Blogs, we have an extra special interview with Nichole who had her dress redesigned prior to her wedding & preserved after by our specialists atTreasured Garment Restoration. Read more about Nichole’s wedding dress journey below.
Thanks Nichole!
Real bridePictured above is Nichole’s redesigned dress (left/middle) and her Mother in the original (right)

When was your wedding and where did it take place?
The wedding was at the Barns of Lost Creek in Beldenville, WI on June 27, 2015
When did you know that your wedding dress was “the one”?
The dress was my mom’s. My grandma (dad’s mom) made the dress for my mom 38 years ago. My grandma died when I was 14. So, I thought that it would be special to wear a dress that my mom wore and my grandma made.
Real brideWhat is your absolute favorite memory from your wedding day?
My favorite memory was having my friends and family to celebrate the wonderful day with us.

Why did you decide to get your wedding attire cleaned by Treasured Garment Restoration?
The lace on the dress had yellowed and need to be cleaned to appear white again. 
I wanted to have the dress restored and altered/updated a bit from the 1970’s look. Therefore, we had it restored and changed to be more in style.

bridePhotographer Credit: Studio 220

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Third Generation Dress

Here at Treasured Garment Restoration we’re lucky enough to hear
many great stories behind some of the garments we have coming in.
Recently, we received a third generation dress to redesign and
restore for a Twin Cities Bride.

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We had the chance to get the full story from the brides mother (pictured above on the right) who worked with Darcy Zeppernick, our Treasured Garment Restoration Wedding Alteration & Design Certified Wedding Specialist.

“Each generation has modified how the headpiece and veil were worn. In 1962, my mother said she never liked how far forward she wore the headpiece and the line of jewels that dangled on her forehead. In 1987 the veil was completely replaced (it didn’t age well). I had to purchase a hoop slip since it was not saved from ’62. This year (2014), my daughter removed the poof and reversed the direction of the veil so she could wear it backwards. She wore the same hoop slip that I wore in 1987. We both noticed how much larger the hoop must have been in 1962.

What I like is that even though it is a vintage (timeless in my opinion) dress, each bride was able to make it uniquely hers by modifying how the veil was worn. Although my mother’s parents bought the dress for her and they were able to see me wear it, they passed before they could see their great granddaughter wear the dress. I know they would have been very pleased!

We learned from Darcy that people used to dance differently compared to now-a-days. People didn’t use to dance with their hands and arms over their heads like they do today so our daughter had to keep that in mind when she wanted to “raise the roof!”

I have one more daughter that may want to wear the dress so it will be preserved for her and any future generations.”-Jeanne Giles

Giles3

We love to hear the history of the pieces we’re cleaning. If you have a piece you’ve been meaning to get restored, let us know! We can help make your item look its best and be preserved for years to come.

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Diamond Awards

Congratulations to our Treasured Garment Restoration team for winning the
Mpls St Paul Magazines Diamond Award for Outstanding Bridal Preservation
This is a huge honor for us and we would like to thank everyone that voted for us!

“The expertise with which this eco-friendly company cleans your gown was not lost on our panel of judges. Their museum-quality preservation process and impressive customer services were an added bonus. Said one judge: “Brides can rest easy knowing that their precious gown is in good hands.”

See other winners of the Diamond Awards here and visit our Treasured Garment Restoration Gallery page to click through a gallery of other preservations we’ve done in the past.

Diamond Award Judges Choice Diamond Award People Choice

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Mpls. / St Paul Magazine’s Diamond Awards

Voting for Mpls.St. Paul Magazine’s Diamond Awards – People’s Choice has begun, and we need your help to ensure that St. Croix Cleaners’ Treasured Garment Restoration is recognized!

Treasured Garment Restoration is St. Croix Cleaners’ premier specialty cleaning division, specializing in the cleaning and restoration of delicate, vintage and specialty garments, including wedding gown preservation and alterations. Treasured Garment Restoration has been recognized by the Pioneer Press, Mpls.St. Paul Magazine, Fox 9 and WCCO.

To cast your vote for Treasured Garment Restoration, follow these quick instructions:

  1. Go to http://mspmag.com/Weddings/Diamond-Awards/
  2. Click on “People’s Choice Vote Now”
  3. Click on “Outstanding Bridal Alterations” and “Outstanding Bridal Preservation” (two separate awards – voting is open for each)
  4. Click “Vote” next to Treasured Garment Restoration

Thank you for supporting St. Croix Cleaners and Treasured Garment Restoration. We hope to see you soon!

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St. Croix Cleaners and Merrick Inc

Merrick, Inc is based a nonprofit corporation out of Vadnais Heights that works with mentally handicapped adults to assist them in taking part in a job in their community. St Croix/White Way Cleaners have been working with Merrick, Inc for over 17 years to provide jobs. This opportunity gives these individuals the skills and ability to build relationships, participate, and work towards something. The skills they acquire can help them with their future goals and bring them closer to their community as well.

St. Croix/White Way employees’ check the clothes in, clean, press, package, and then it is up to the Merrick team to deliver the garments back to the customers. They go to the West 7th street location to pick up the cleaned items and deliver them to the doors of the customers and also pick up more items to be cleaned.

There are currently 8 Merrick employees working as delivery helpers ranging from ages 25-late 50’s and on average have been with the company for 13+ years.  John, a St. Croix Cleaners employee raves about how much love and respect each individual gives their co workers and how much he enjoys working with them. He sees them four days a week and says to never having once had a problem with the deliveries.  Their hard work has gained them all a very well respected place in the St. Paul community.

A former crew associate says “With the length of service all of the crew members have on the crews is a testament to how much they enjoy their job and the tasks they perform.  Cindy has been a job coach for White Way/St. Croix cleaners for 14 years, Amy for 7 years.  There are a number of businesses whose employees know the clients by name and will socialize with them for a few minutes when dropping off and picking up clothes.”

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Grand Re-opening

Our Grand Avenue location is back up and running! Here is a peek at what we’ve been working on…

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Come in and check it out. The look is the only thing that has changed. You’ll still see the same friendly faces and get the high quality, eco-friendly service you had before.

MON – FRI: 7AM – 7PM
SATURDAY: 9AM – 6PM

678 Grand Avenue, St. Paul, MN  55105
(651) 291-1683

Stop in and celebrate the Grand Re-opening with us!

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