Guest Blogger: Morgan Gray | www.graygabbana.com
Phew. I couldn’t have been happier to be my sister’s maid of honor at her wedding—but let me tell you, now that it’s done, I’m glad that there’s time for us all to kick back and breathe a bit. In the post-wedding haze there are a lot of things still left to, though with the wedding done, we can afford to take our sweet time about it! Now there are gifts to arrange, thank-you cards to send, and honeymoon pictures to ship out, which are all luckily things my sister is more than happy to take care of. But she’s been struggling with what she ought to do with her wedding dress, and asked for my advice. My first instinct was to frame or keep it, but as she and her new husband are moving into a small apartment in New York City together, everything disposable must go. So I did some research, and found some interesting options for her!
Since they’re moving, my sister and her husband have to make sure everything has its place. A wedding dress at the moment can’t just take up space in their new apartment—so I’ve been looking up ways for my sister to repurpose her dress. This is not for the overly sentimental or faint of heart, especially since it generally means cutting up one’s own wedding dress. But it can be for a great reason! Some people turn their dresses into the skirt to go with their Christmas trees, which can easily turn into a useful family heirloom. Another option is to make something completely new from the dress, like a christening gown, if you and your spouse plan to have children. Or if you’re one of many who would like to wear your wedding dress on more than one occasion, you can separate the bustier from the skirt, and use both on formal occasions! A friend of mine dyed her bustier, and plans to wear it on every anniversary—and it’s beautiful.
Trash the Dress
Something new and interesting is to absolutely wreck your wedding dress—for art! On your wedding day, a grass stain or unfortunate drop of sauce can be the downfall of your gown. But with the right setting and photographer, you can mess up your dress, be artsy about it, and get some great photos out of it, too. A friend of mine recently did this—she married an artist, so in the photo session, her white dress became his canvas. My sister’s husband proposed to her during one of their long hikes, so maybe they could have a photo shoot on the dirty top of a mountain! Underwater and beaches are also common “Trash the Dress” themes, and the photos are beautiful. This can also be a great opportunity for gift-giving, now that it’s the holiday season—a photo gallery like those offered on this site, our personal favorite, where you can put the photos, can be lovely commemorative gifts for your friends and in-laws.
Another great option, if you’re feeling especially non-attached and philanthropic, is to donate your wedding gown. There are a lot of great organizations that will take in your dress and make sure somebody in need will get it. If you want to donate to an organization that raises cancer awareness, you might look into Brides Against Breast Cancer or The Brides’ Project. If you, too, get sentimental watching military weddings, Brides Across America gives dresses to those military members getting married, or those marrying into the service. If you’re also in New York City, The Bridal Garden sells dresses and donates the profits to local public schools. And if your bridesmaids want to give their dresses, the Glass Slipper Project gives prom dresses to girls who can’t afford them.
And should you need another incentive, donating your dress can be written off as a tax deduction!