Transporting the gown is very often treated as an afterthought and sometimes only remembered a few days before jetting off. As if you needed something else to stress about, right? It’s your big day, and everything needs to be PERFECT. So how do you keep your dress perfectly pressed up to the moment you walk down the aisle? We understand the struggle is so real when manoeuvring in a car or on a plane with your precious dress, so we’ve put together a few top tips on how to travel with your wedding dress.
Most important things to note
The fabric of the dress is important to note. Ideally, you should hold up to the latest possible moment before you slip on your dress to avoid wrinkling, especially for materials like pure silk. Poly mixes, chiffon, jersey, tulle and lace hold up the best.
Clearly label your carry on with your name, email, phone number and address for both your home and destination.
Packing into a garment bag
- Keep your gown on the hanger and pull the hook through the garment bag’s top opening.
- Keep the train and skirt outside of the bag.
- Hang the gown facing you with the top half inside the bag.
- Take the dress’ bottom left and right sides and fold them into the center in a trifold. Note: sheath dresses may not need this step.
- Keep the two sides of the skirt folded and roll the train from the bottom until it is short enough to place in the bottom of the bag. Lace and other textured fabrics are less likely to show wrinkles. If you’re careful about how you fold and roll the train, there will be a lot less wrinkling and touch-up pressing needed upon arrival.
- Zip close the garment bag. Guide the zipper up to the top as you zip, with your middle finger behind the zipper. This protects any delicate beading, tulle or lace on your wedding gown from catching and ripping in the zipper.
- Lay the garment bag on a flat surface, and carefully roll it into a loose trifold.
Packing into a luggage
- Remove your gown from the hanger and turn it inside out. This protects the dress’ outside in case anything spills inside of your suitcase. Tip: If you’re able, I always recommend giving your dress its own suitcase to keep it far away from toiletries, shoes and anything else that could crush or stain your dress.
- Lay it on a flat surface like a bed, or a clean, carpeted floor.
- Fold the two sides of the skirt in at the fullest part of the skirt and loosely roll the dress from bottom to top, keeping as much air between the layers and folds of the dress. This prevents wrinkling.
- Place the rolled dress in a large plastic dry cleaning bag to protect it from dirt and spills. Tip: Tie off or tape the ends of the bag, creating an air pocket around the dress. This air cushion minimizes wrinkles.
- Place the dress in your suitcase.
On the plane
If you need to fly overseas for your wedding, there are a few things you should run through with your airline. Always call them and check if they are able to stow away your dress in one of the cabin’s closets. You don’t want to have to squeeze your beautiful dress above your seats now, do you? Airlines generally count wedding dresses as carry-on items, so be sure to check with the carry-on policies and fly through security with no problems. If your dress needs to pass through security checkpoints, rest assured that the officers are required to use gloves to avoid damaging the dress. Most brides will naturally be nervous about putting their expensive wedding dress in checked luggage and we would always recommend bringing it into the cabin with you if you can.
If the airline is not able to accommodate your request to keep the dress in a closet, pack the dress in a protective box or your luggage. When folding the dress to fit into the box or luggage, use something with a curved edge (polystyrene in a cylindrical shape or rolled up tissue paper) and place it into the folds of the dress so that a sharp crease won’t form in the fabric, and then place the folded dress in a clothing bag before placing it in the box or luggage. If there are vacant seats on your flight, a polite smile and a quiet word with one of the air hostesses might award your dress a free seat, allowing you to take it out and lay it flat. Just make sure it’s also in a bag as you don’t want to discover stains from the seats have transferred when you land.
Have your hotel or local dry cleaner press it for you after you’ve landed. Remember to book this service beforehand, in case they are unavailable when you need them. If the wrinkles are light, you can even hang the dress in your bathroom as you take a hot shower the night before your wedding. This will, in fact, kill two birds with one stone, as you can relax into the night AND get rid of the minor wrinkles for most fabrics (except silk) with the gentle steam. This should work quite well – depending on the size of the bathroom, the amount of steam that builds up, and the type of dress you have. Be sure to double check with your bridal shop for information on how to prepare your specific wedding dress. Feel free to find out what sort of tissue paper you can use to protect the embellishments (usually uncoloured acid free paper) and whether or not the material will be safe to press, steam or iron on arrival.
On the day
Hang your dress in a large plastic garment bag to prevent any water or stains from getting on the dress and lay it as flat as possible in the car. Keep it hanging up high such that it doesn’t touch the ground as you’re getting hair and makeup done. Don’t forget to use the restroom before slipping into your gown!
After the wedding
It’s important to know how to get your dress to its destination in the best possible condition, but it’s almost equally important to know how to get it home too. Arrange to have the dress dry cleaned the day after the wedding, and simply pack your dress in the same way as you did for the trip over.
To ensure the run up to your wedding is stress-free, plan carefully. Don’t leave anything to chance and assume nothing! Leah S Designs is located in Hallam, just 30 minutes from Melbourne CBD. Our wedding dresses are also carried by a range of stockists around Australia. We’ve got labels that you won’t see anywhere else and with a size range from 4 to 38, no woman is left out no matter your figure shape or size. We’d love to see you in store! Booking an appointment is best so that we can give you our undivided attention, particularly on Saturdays. To stay up to date and see other lovely reviews from happy brides, follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.