One of the most important—and exciting—parts of the wedding planning process is finding the gown you will wear on your special day. But once the event is over, some brides struggle with the decision on what to do with their dream dress. Luckily, there are plenty of options! You just need to figure out what works best for you.
If you want to keep your dress for sentimental reasons—or in the event that your future daughter or granddaughter might want to wear it someday—then preserving it is your best option. This is a process that needs to be done immediately after the wedding, especially if there are any stains to be treated. You can bring it to your local dry cleaner (ask around for references), or Wedding Gown Preservation Kit will do it for you for $250. Simply place your order and the company will send you a preservation box so you can ship your dress to them. Your gown is then cleaned, preserved, and sent back to you.
Want to wear your wedding dress more than once? Think about altering your dress to make it shorter, as well as dyeing it dress another color, so you can wear it to a future special event, like your first anniversary. Keep in mind, though, that you still need to have your dress cleaned beforehand, and not every fabric is easy to dye. So it’s best to consult with an experienced seamstress that will be able to guide you in the process.
There are other ways to use the dress aside from wearing it again. You can use the fabric from the dress to create a christening outfit or other special ensemble for your future children. And since you’re likely dealing with a lot of fabric, you can also have other items made, such as pillows, a baby blanket, a scarf, or even Christmas stockings, just to name a few.
Believe it or not, you can actually display your gorgeous gown in your home for years to come by framing it. The Beautiful Frame Company and Outrageous Framing are two companies that will do this for you.
Thanks to the internet, selling your wedding gown is easier than ever. There are plenty of sites set up specifically for this task, with some allowing you to keep 100 percent of the proceeds. PreownedWeddingDresses.com, Nearly Newlywed, Bravo Bride, Still White, and Once Wed are just a few of the online options for those looking to sell. And don’t forget about Facebook Marketplace, eBay, and Poshmark.
There are plenty of brides that cannot afford a beautiful gown for their big day, so consider donating your dress once you’ve said I do. Brides Against Breast Cancer, Brides Across America (for military brides), and Brides for a Cause are just a few of the organizations that will accept gown donations. In addition, Angel Gowns and Baby Gowns for Eternity turn wedding dresses into gowns for stillborn infants. Just keep in mind that most charities collecting for brides only want gowns that are less than four years old and in very good condition.
No, we’re not talking about tossing your beloved gown in the garbage! Instead, think about setting up a “Trash the Dress” photo shoot with your photographer after the wedding. You can wear your dress to the beach and frolic in the waves, surround yourself with a colorful smoke bomb, or treat your dress like a canvas and splash some paint on it—you get the idea. While your dress will be done, you’ll have some one-of-a-kind photos to treasure forever.