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Acid Damage

This 1800 silk wedding dress has stains caused by improper storage. The garment was, at one time, stored with paper, cardboard or wood touching the front of dress.

Ordinary paper, cardboard, woods, and even plastic products, unless created specifically to archival standards, are made using acids. These acids are released naturally over time and cause staining and deterioration of the objects they touch. Dust, a complex mixture of abrasive particles and corrosive chemicals, is especially hazardous to textiles. It can cut fibers and hold moisture, which causes damage at the inter-fiber level. Other chemical pollutants, such as sulfur dioxide, ozone, and nitrogen dioxide, are expelled into the air as automobile exhaust, created by industry, and emitted by many manufactured products such as paints and adhesives. All will cause irreversible stains on clothing.



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