What to do with your wedding dress after the day?
Updated: Jan 23
This is something I've been thinking about recently, as I still have my dress packed away neatly (stuffed in a cupboard) where it's been since our wedding day. I hadn't thought at the time about what to do with it afterwards, I maybe thought I'd sell it on but I never got round to it.. So there it's stayed! I'd been chatting with a few people about what they've done with theirs and thought I'd put together some of the ideas I've come across!
There are lots of reasons to keep hold of your dress and there some fab dress cleaning services available, who'll dry clean and return it neatly boxed and ready to go into long term storage, maybe even for your own children. I've seen brides who've had their mums dresses re-made into their own, or sewn a small piece of it into their dress. Or, you could just hang it up in the wardrobe and stick it on whenever you fancy! Here's Michaela, one of my 2017 brides, wearing hers to watch the Royal Wedding in last month, because, well why the heck not!
I got mine out recently to inspect the damage - there's some serious wedding day dirt on it and I'm not sure if the creases will ever come out, but I showed it to Elsie who immediately wanted to try it on. Getting a pic of her in it was one of the things I'd wanted to do before potentially donating it, so seized the opportunity!
I stumbled across The Beautiful Frame Company recently on Instagram and I love this idea. They will restore, clean and hand preserve your dress before framing it in a bespoke frame hand made from raw materials and complete with UV protected glass ensuring its preserved perfectly forever. How incredible would this look in a dressing room! You can find out all about them and the process here.
It was finding these sweet images on Instagram recently that made me think about my dress again. Hello Blue Bridal are a bridal alterations service in Northwich, Cheshire, who are also able to take your dress and turn it into a keepsake, christening blanket or gown for your little ones, meaning it can not only be re-used by you, but also passed on to future generations for their christenings.
This is one of the options that probably needs to be done quickly after the wedding, but if you're not sentimental and wore a designer dress that's stayed in good condition after the day, selling it can be a great idea and prices on current, or recent season dresses can be upto £1000. There are a number of sites specifically for re-selling wedding dresses.. Sell My Wedding Dress also list shoes, bridesmaids dresses and other bridal accessories too!
There are so many charity shops that will take wedding dresses and give them a second life.. one of my brides from earlier this year was wearing a designer dress she picked up in a charity shop for a fraction of the original price, and of course the money goes to the charity.
There are a number of other places who'll take wedding dress donations.. one of which is the wonderful Cherished Gowns UK. They transform donated wedding dresses into carefully crafted burial gowns for babies that are born too soon, too late or too poorly. These gowns are then donated to hospitals and parents around the UK completely free of charge.
Another is Wish For a Wedding, who provide dream weddings for couples dealing with a terminal illness, through a combination of supplier donations and subsidised wedding services, and take wedding dress donations for terminally ill brides who they are offering support to through the wedding planning process.
What are your plans for your wedding dress after the wedding? Or have you already done something with it? I'd love to know while I debate what to do with mine!