How Does Dry Cleaning Work?

As Featured on WCCO’s “Good Question”:

What happens between the time you drop off your most treasured garments at the cleaners and when you pick them up?

John Lauritsen of the WCCO team asked this “Good Question” last week, and we invited him to take a tour with St Croix Cleaners’ Owner, Dave Nemec, of our main facility here in Stillwater, MN.  There’s a little more to dry cleaning than you might think!  Take a look:

Or watch the video here: Check out the video here: CBS Minnesota’s Good Question

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Dress Alterations & Design

The season of fancy dresses, dancing all night, chicken dinners and green beans, romance and wine is fast approaching.  That’s right, it’s almost wedding season – are you ready?

If you’re looking for quick alterations for your fancy dress, or need to get that bridesmaid gown ready for the upcoming wedding, we can help!  Enter Treasured Garment Restoration’s Wedding Dress Designer and Alterations specialist, Darcy Zeppernick, featured yesterday in the Pioneer Press!

“Zeppernick has worked with many brides to restore, update and redesign vintage wedding gowns. Updates can include removing the sleeves, reducing the neckline and adding things like buttons or a sash. Other options include using fabric from the existing gown and incorporating it into a new dress. Existing fabric can be made into a bodice or used as trim.

“We can do nearly anything the bride wants,” Zeppernick says. “We try to figure out what it is about the gown that they like and what they would like to change.” ”

Read more here: http://www.twincities.com/shopping/ci_25724738/cleaners-designers-can-give-vintage-wedding-dress-makeover

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One of Darcy Zeppernick’s Wedding Gown Designs – 1920’s Inspired

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Winter Storage Tips

We stopped by the Twin Cities Live studio yesterday to share some winter storage tips for your favorite garments!

Here are a few of the tips for storing your winter garments until next season:

  • -Clean your clothes before you put them away.  Food and beverage stains can attract clothes moths and silver fish.
  • -Once you get your clothes back from the dry cleaners, remove them from the plastic garment bag.  Your clothes need to “breathe”.   And, don’t store your sweaters on hangers.
  • -When storing winter bedding, make sure to wash and completely dry your comforters.  Remember, comforters can take up to 8 hours to completely dry.
  • -Use lemon rinds and baking soda in your closet.  Lemon rinds keep bugs from burrowing in your clothes.  The baking soda, just like in the refrigerator, will eliminate odors in your clothes.  Don’t use mothballs!  These will leave a permanent odor on your clothing.

Watch the video here.

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Featured in the Stillwater Gazette

We’ve got a lot planned for 2014 and are excited to continue to help our customers look and feel their very best – every single day!  Check out the recent article in the Stillwater Gazette about this expansive regrowth plan:

“St. Croix Cleaners, a locally owned dry cleaning service, announces it will add two new locations and an extensive renovation and rebranding plan for 2014.

The two new urban locations will be on the skyway level of the Soo Line Building City Apartments in Minneapolis and inside Lunds in the new Penfield Luxury Apartments in St. Paul. These new locations will join a network of…”  Read the rest of the article on the Stillwater Gazette’s website.

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Ways to Prevent Color Fading on Your Clothes

Do you ever have items that seem to fade and wear out in certain parts of the garment? This is often due to wear over time. Certain fabrics such as cotton, linen and ramie are more susceptible to this kind of wear. It also depends on your lifestyle and the quality of the item itself. Unfortunately, their is no way to prevent this. But, their are ways to prevent the wearing out and loss of color on your items and we’re here to share a few helpful tips with you!

 

  1. Wash darks with darks, and lights with lights. Though this may seem to be common sense to some, many people mix loads. This is a leading cause of fading in both dark and light colored garments. The best way to prevent this is doing separate loads.

  2. Do not stuff the washer. We know that doing separate loads may be time consuming. But in the best interest of your clothes, it is important to not over stuff the washer. Your items will not get cleaned properly and it also leads to  more time in the dryer which leads to our next tip…
  3. Don’t spend all day drying your clothes. The more you over stuff the washer, the more you over stuff your drying, the more time it needs to fully dry. Too much time in the dryer is bad for fabrics. It can cause the color to fade and wear out. The clothes need to  move freely in the dryer.


 

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8 Steps to Re-Design Your Mother’s Vintage Dress

So you’ve received the heirloom wedding dress from your mother and have thought about wearing it.  But wait.. it doesn’t fit!  Or perhaps the style is just a bit out-of-date for your liking? Don’t completely turn down the dress yet – you might still be able to wear it, and make it your own!

Many brides these days are turning to vintage wedding dresses from their mother or grandmother.  It’s become a big trend over the last few years, and only continues to increase!  Think about it – wearing a special gown that embodies the strength, wisdom and compassion of the women in your family down the aisle on one of the biggest days of your life.  But where do you even start if this is something you just *might* be thinking about?

We’ve put together 8 Simple Steps to Redesigning Your Mother’s Vintage Dress to give you a better idea of what the process looks like!  The entire process can vary in the time it will take to fully complete your dress, and really depends on the amount of changes you are wanting to make, but it’s a good idea to start around 9-12 months out.

1. Is There a Possibility?

The first step is to bring the vintage gown to us so that we can determine whether there is even a possibility for you to redesign and wear it!  We’ll examine the fabric, beading, lace, examine any stains, and how it has been handled and preserved through the years (ie, was it placed in a box, or in a pile on the floor of a closet?). Depending on the gown’s age, we may need to work with our vintage restoration department to clean and restore it before working with it.  Sometimes the entire gown can be worn, other times, only parts of the gown or certain fabrics are able to be used for your gown.

2. Let Our Designer Get to Know YOU!

Darcy, our Wedding Gown Designer, would love to learn more about you, your likes, dislikes, things you are drawn to, so that she can get a better idea of what you might like.  This step usually includes sending Darcy pictures of other dresses you like – whether it’s parts of a dress (ie. the neckline, or a certain type of beading).  It can also help to share a Pinterest board with Darcy and some of your overall ideas for the wedding, pictures of architecture or places, or any beautiful images that you really feel drawn to!  Darcy is then able to draw a few sketches and come up with some ideas for transforming the gown into something you would love.

3. Meeting #1 – Talk Design and Take Measurements

Next, you’ll set up a second meeting with Darcy to see what she has come up with.  She’ll usually have a few ideas and options for how she thinks you would love the gown to look.  You can then edit the designs from there and talk more about your preferences.  During this meeting, Darcy will take your measurements as well.

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4. Show Actual Changes on the Vintage Dress

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Once the final design is agreed upon, Darcy will use your measurements to mark up the vintage dress to show where changes will be made.  This could include safety pins, bits of fabric, or ribbon to show the changes.  At this time, the dress will be altered a little to fit your earlier measurements – this could mean the dress might get cut in certain areas, but not always.

 

 

 

 

5. Meeting #2 – First Fitting

You’ll set up another meeting with Darcy to come in and see the dress as it is marked up.  You will try on the dress to make sure the measurements are accurate and that everything is lined up in the correct locations.  This is the moment when you can begin to really visualize and see the dress becoming YOUR dress!

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6. Sewing

This is where Darcy begins to sew your gown – to place lace or fabric in different places, and to fit the dress perfectly for you.  Throughout this period, she may be in contact with you for minor tweaks or other measurements.  This is your dress, and you want it to be fabulous!

7. Final Fitting

At your final meeting with Darcy, you get to see the final result!  You are able to try on your dress, make sure it fits, and to show it off to all your best girlfriends!  If there are any minor tweaks to be made, we make sure to leave a little time to complete them.

8. It’s Wedding Time!

Once your gown is complete, we press it to perfection, and give it to you for your big day!  You are going to look beautiful!

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It's Earth Month! Let's Conserve Water

This April (usually known as Earth Month since Earth Day falls on the 22nd) we’re excited to share more and more reasons why innovative technologies continue to make dry cleaning a relatively eco-friendly practice!

St Croix Cleaners is one of the largest dry cleaning facilities in the Twin Cities metro, if not Minnesota, and that means that A LOT of water is being used clean and press garments.

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At a dry cleaning plant, though typical ‘dry cleaning’ does not use water, many other things do require the use of it.  Water is used for washing clothes in some machines, for attached laundromat’s machines, and it is also used to create the heat and steam so that we’re able to press your garments to make them look their best.

With 20 locations across the metro, we were cleaning and pressing quite a few garments a day – and that meant we were using A LOT of water ever day.  After a bit of research on how we might be able to save some of this water, we invested in a water circulation tower in 2010 that is now on the roof of our facility.

The water conservation tower recycles and purifies the majority of the water we use – saving over 2.5 million gallons of water a year!  That’s enough water to fill over 92 Olympic-sized swimming pools!

Just another reason we love to help you look and feel your very best – every single day.

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Lost Sweater – Found Thanks to Dry Cleaning!

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A sweater found in a Minneapolis parking ramp was returned to it’s owner last week – all because of dry cleaning Technology!

That’s right, thanks to significant increases in technology over the past several years, dry cleaning has become an extremely high-tech industry.

Every time your shirt, sweater, pants – you name it – is dropped off with us, it receives a small barcode.  This barcode is usually placed in an out-of-sight location so it is of no inconvenience to you and your garments, but the information it holds is extremely valuable.  Within that tiny barcode holds all kinds of information about that garment, including things like:

  • the type of garment it is (shirt, pants, dress, etc)
  • the fabric, color and brand of the garment
  • who the garment belongs to
  • when the garment was checked in at our stores, where it is within the cleaning process and whether it is ready to be picked up
  • even the amount of times that garment has been to us!

This information allows us to use the utmost care and quality standards in handling and cleaning your garments. And, for one lucky customer, it helped her get her sweater back!  Another customer found a sweater on the ground in a St Paul Community Ed parking lot after a theater performance once night.  She knew we barcoded our items, so looked at the care label – and sure enough – a barcode!  She emailed us with the barcode number, and we were able to locate the customer it belonged to, and to get her sweater back to her!  She had just “written off” the sweater – which was one of her favorites and most expensive and never thought it could be located..!

It’s a great feel-good story for a nice Thursday afternoon, eh?!

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When is the Best Time to Clean My…?

UGGs?

The spring (March, April)  is usually the best time to clean these after you have trekked through the snow and salt all winter.  It’s important to remove the salt as soon as possible and to place a protective coating on your UGGs before letting them sit all summer.  That way, when the unexpected snow storm comes next October, you can pull out your UGGs and be ready to go!

Rugs?

Late spring, early summer  is best to clean your household rugs.  Just think about all the times you’ve stomped in from outside on that rug, and how much dirt and salt has built up on it. Vacuuming is only able to pick up the top layer – what about the dirt that has worked it’s way inside the rug?  It’s best to plan for annual cleanings – just once per year can help your rugs last three times as long!

Winter Coats?

At least once at the end of the winter.  Remember, you wear your winter coat almost every day in the winter – and you drive, eat, travel and more while wearing it.  Once the snow and ice finally decide to start melting away, and you’re able to switch to a light spring jacket, make sure to bring your coat in to us – that way it’s cleaned and properly stored until next winter!

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It's Super Bowl Weekend!

Who are you cheering for this weekend?

We’re just excited that we received two pro-bowl vikings jerseys this week! And BOTH of them are signed!

(Yes, we can clean them!)

Signed Jerseys - Adrian Peterson, Jared Allen

Adrian Peterson and Jared Allen’s signed Pro Bowl Jerseys

 

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