*Ask friends about dry-cleaning firms whom they trust. Try to find someone who routinely cares for wedding dresses and eveningwear.
*Check with the Better Business Bureau for specific cleaners you are considering.
*Find out whether the cleaner is a member of the International Fabricare Institute. This nonprofit trade association keeps its members up-to-date on the latest information about cleaning techniques.
*Ask your dry cleaner how often they change the solvents. This should be done at least once a month. Specify that the solvent used must be clean. Dirty solvents can discolor your wedding gown.
*Don’t necessarily look for the lowest price. Keeping your gown beautiful is worth the price of a cleaning.
*Take note of the appearance of the shop. Is it clean and well organized? Does it look like a place that will do a good job?
When purchasing your gown, find out as much information as possible from the retailer about how to clean and care for it.
If you have specific questions about cleaning and preserving your gown, you can contact the International Fabricare Institute. Email them at www.IFI.org, or write to the International Fabricare Institute, 12251 Tech Road, Silver Spring, MD 20904 or call them at 301-622-1900.