Yellow On My Dress

I have a veil that I wore for my First Communion in 1977. My Goddaughter is making her First Communion next weekend. I’ve sent the veil to her and she really wants to wear it. However, over time it has yellowed some and her dress is new and white. Is there any way we can whiten the veil without damaging it?
Thank You in advance for any help you can give.

Dear Jeni: Before doing anything to the veil, consult with a local bridal veil shop. They should have the answer you need. My feeling is that, since it is an heirloom, the yellowing is part of the “heirloom” process. That is what makes it “special”. Anyone can buy a new White veil, but your veil is aged, and Special.
Congratulations to you and your Goddaughter.
Good Luck, Andy

One Response to “Yellow On My Dress”

  1. Kirsten says:

    Whatever you do, don’t bleach it!  It will definitely ruin the veil.  However if you don’t mind testing a small corner of it without immersing the whole thing, you can make a paste out of oxy-clean and see if that doesn’t get at least some of the yellow out.  But if the veil is polyester then I am sorry but there isn’t a thing that will get it white again.  If the veil is cotton then a mild diluted paste of oxy clean should take out a good amount of the yellow, but be very careful and start with a very weak solution (very liquidy), dip the corner of the veil and then let it sit for about 15 minutes then rinse.  Repeat this process until it looks about the right color.  Pay attention to what is happening to the fibers, if they start to feel brittle and weak then rinse and stop immediately, let it air dry.  Unfortunately there is only so much you can do with older veils, some times it is just best to have them decoratively placed on location with flowers or something as a representation of the past and then put away for the next special event.  Wedding shops have an heirlooming service too that will help preserve those older things.  Part of the yellowing has to do with the fibers sucking any color from the tissue they were wrapped in.  In order to heirloom your veil you want to use acid free tissue and an acid free box.  This will preserve the color for longer.  Good luck!