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Undoubtedly, one of the best parts of your wedding day is slipping into your wedding dress. From the Pinterest boards, to the hunt with your bridesmaids, to finally saying yes to the dress, the excitement to walk down the aisle in your gown is unbearable. It costs a pretty penny, but is worth every cent when he sees you floating down the aisle in a white cloud of tulle. Once your big day is over, you find yourself with a beautiful dress that you wore one time (which was probably not enough) and the question is what to do with it? Here are just a few of the options you have to put it to good use:
1. Save It For Later
Most of our parents, and grandparents, have done this for generations. Or if you are like my family, you may have even worn the family heirloom on your wedding day. A lot of brides opt to get it cleaned and preserved to store for years in the closet, in the hopes that one day, they will have a not-so-little-girl who wants to wear it on her wedding day too. Make sure to store it away from sunlight, moisture, and in a properly preserved box.
2. Trash the Dress
This is a new trend that has latched on with millennials. If you haven’t heard of it, it basically involves doing something fun in your dress to create a memory, all captured by a photographer! Ideas range from color runs to swimming in the ocean to traveling the world (follow @thehoneymooners *featured in Austria here* on Instagram to see their beautiful images of trashing the dress from around the world!). Some brides do it the day after their wedding, while others spend months coming up with their own original idea! Make it your own!
3. Donate To A Good Cause
There are many women who are dreaming of a wedding dress that they can’t afford. Donating it too a good cause will make you feel like it’s not just sitting up in the attic collecting dust! Organizations like Goodwill, Wish Upon A Wedding, or Brides Across America will put them in the hands of women who would be more that grateful that your dress gets a second chance down the aisle!
4. Sell It
There are plenty of Facebook resale pages or apps that allow brides to sell their used wedding items, and dresses are no exception. If yours is in good condition, you might be able to sell it for a few hundred less than you paid for it. Or you can always try a local wedding dress store that might buy it off of you too. That money can put a dent in the down-payment for a new home, or paying off those max-ed out honeymoon credit cards!
5. Chop Off a Few Layers
A popular modern use for a wedding dress is to have it shortened to a party dress! I love this option because it allows the dress to get more every-day use, while still being preserved! My friend Caitie is considering it with her dress, and some styles like her’s would be darling with a shorter shirt, red heels and a leather jacket for date night!
6. Repurpose It
There are so many things you could turn your dress into. From lingerie, decorative pillows, shadow boxes, or simply have it framed on the wall. Lace, tulle, beading and chiffon are all beautiful materials to craft into a decorative item in your home, a belt or skirt to add to your wardrobe, or a gift for your future daughter-in law on her wedding day! Check out Pinterest for more creative ideas!
This idea was inspired by an article of a bride who wears it out every year with her husband for their anniversary. Over the years they have donned their wedding clothes and enjoyed a date night in them. Dates have varied from dinner, to the mvies, and even bowling!
We decided to put a twist on this by wearing it for annual anniversary pictures! We love having our pictures taken, and we plan on pulling our wedding clothes out of the box every year and putting it on for one or two of our portraits. So far we have only celebrated one anniversary, but over the years we are adding them to the back of our wedding album. I can’t wait to see how we change in 50 years!
What have you done, or plan to do with your dress? Add it to the comments below and you might be featured! Special thanks to Alexis, Molly, Alex, Carrie, and Caitie for letting me use pictures of their beautiful gowns!
whether that's capturing your memories or making sure your day runs smoothly