For most families, baptism is a very important step in the lives of every child and is, therefore, strictly adhered to. A lot has to be planned prior to the event. It is important for the parents to send out invitations, book the day of baptism and confirm availability with the priest and take care of other details that play a role in the day.
A child’s baptism dress is one of the many factors that should be considered. While some modern day families prefer to shop for a baptism dress for every child, some families prefer holding on to tradition and passing on an old baptism gown through the generations.
When using an old baptism gown, one of things that must be done is washing it before it can be used. While most gowns are stored while clean, they can accumulate dust and dirt over the years and this may even cause them to change color.
How to Clean an Old Baptism Dress
Baptism dresses are mostly white as they are a symbol of purity, joy and new life. For old baptism dresses, accumulation of dust and dirt over the years can make them very dirty. You, therefore, need to carefully clean it to get t back into shape. These gowns turn yellowish with time and if proper washing is not done, they can completely turn color. This would not be good for a gown that has been preserved over the years for future generations.
To clean an old, white baptism gown:
- Fill a tub with lukewarm water. If you use water that is too hot, it might damage the dress.
- In a bucket of hot water, pour a cup of Woolite and leave it to dissolve completely.
- After dissolving, pour the mixture into the tub of lukewarm water.
- Pick your dress and lay it flat at the bottom of the tub and allow the water to flow through the dress as the dress rises to the top. After not more than 30 minutes, you can start washing the gown.
- Use a sponge to apply gentle pressure on the parts of the gown with stains. Clean gently until it the stains come off.
- Drain the tub and use the shower head to rinse the gown. Alternatively, you can simply fill the tub with cold water and rinse the gown a couple of times until the water is clear.
- Allow the water to drain from the dress as you hold it with both hands. Avoid wringing the dress to drain the water as it can damage it.
- Allow the dress to hang dry as opposed to using the dryer as it can cause damage to the dress.
- Once the dress dries, it will be back to its white color and looking as good as new.
How to Prevent a Baptism Dress from Turning Yellow
Instead of always trying to find a way to clean a white baptism dress that has turned yellow, the best way to preserve the dress is by preventing it from turning yellow in the first place. This is because bleaching the gown often to remove the yellow stains can reduce the life span of the dress, which is not a good thing for a gown that is meant to be passed on through generations.
To prevent a baptism dress from turning yellow:
- Wash or dry clean the dress within three days of being worn. Clean it according to tag recommendations and ensure you clean it even when it does not seem stained.
- Ensure that only fresh, filtered solvent is used on the gown. Ask the cleaners to avoid using anti-fungal treatments, which can be damaging.
- Purchase a textile which will be used to store the dress as opposed to storing it in the open. You can also use acid-free tissue paper to fold the dress in and store it in an acid-free box.