- Make sure the garments or blankets are clean by laundering or dry-cleaning each piece. Pay particular attention to stains and be certain that pieces are completely dry before packing away. Moisture is not your friend!
- You may use storage boxes sold for archival storage. These are usually made of acid-free paper and are perfectly safe to use. However, if you are concerned about the box getting crushed, purchase a plastic storage box. The box must be made of cast polypropylene to be safe for your keepsakes. Look for the #5 within the recycling triangle or the letters “PP” to be sure that you have the correct type of box.
- You will also need to purchase archival tissue paper. It must be both acid and lignin – a chemical compound derived from wood - free.
- Wash and dry your hands before handling items – no lotion or creams that can stain clothing. If there are any metal buttons, remove them and store separately by wrapping them in tissue. The metal can rust or corrode and cause staining.
- Begin by lightly stuffing hats or puffy sleeves with the acid-free tissue paper. Then, lay the garments onto a layer of tissue.
- Wrap each item with tissue, adding more tissue as needed. Be sure that there is tissue cushioning each fold. This will prevent heavy creasing. Place item in storage box.
- Repeat steps with each individual item. If you like the scent of lavender, wrap a few sprigs with tissue paper and add them to the box. Do not allow the lavender to touch any keepsakes directly.
- Choose a cool, dry space for storage. Avoid extreme temperatures areas like attics, basements and garages. The ideal spot is an interior space away from exterior walls and pipes that might burst; like under a bed.
- Inspect the treasures at least once per year. Look for any stains that may appear and treat them promptly. You'll have better success the sooner the stains are caught. With clean hands, fold items slightly differently with the tissue to minimize creases and stress to fabric.
Specific questions? Just ask here.
- If you discover stains when inspecting the items, clean the items immediately. If the item is washable, mix a solution of oxygen-based bleach (OxiClean, Clorox 2, Country Save Bleach, Purex 2 Color Safe Bleach) and cool water. (NEVER use chlorine bleach) Follow the package directions as to how much product per gallon of water. Completely submerge the garment and allow it to soak for at least eight hours. Check the stain. If it is gone, wash as usual. If it remains, mix a fresh solution and repeat. It may take several soakings to remove the stain but it should come out.
For dry clean only pieces, take them to a professional and point out the problem areas.
What You Need
- Baby keepsakes
- Polypropylene or Archival quality storage box
- Archival quality tissue paper