Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Pay it Forward: Wedding Dress

I've been married 7.5 incredible years. Well, some of those years weren't so incredible, but not based on my choice of husband. He was nothing short of amazing through all of our heartbreak and remains so to this day.

I kind of won the jackpot with that one.

When I picked out a wedding dress, everyone thought I'd choose a simple A-line because I've never been the frilly type. I didn't. I grabbed the pretty princess dress. It was the 4th dress off the rack and I was done trying them on in an hour. Probably to the dismay of my mother who loves all things lace and frills and girly. I've just never fit that category too well. That probably means Claire will love all that stuff and I'll have to embrace the pink. Grandma will be stoked.

It was off the rack, but still needed tailoring (which I'm convinced can be avoided, but alas). It was tailored and ended up being something like $700 when it was all said and done.

And then I wore it once. The best day of my life in a dress I still think is quite beautiful. And on July 26, 2008, I stuffed that dress and its accompanying petticoat in a comforter bag and stuffed it in the closet. And then I put it on a moving truck and brought it to Illinois where I stuffed it in a wooden chest. I told my mom I planned to throw it away and she wasn't keen on that idea.

I didn't sew it myself or pour hours and hours into it like my mom did making hers. Probably thousands of brides that same year had the same dress. It wasn't mine... just a "borrowed" style and one that I was grateful for that year, but won't ever use again. It hasn't been cleaned and is still dirty on the bottom from our outdoor reception. I never planned to have it professionally cleaned or have someone cut half of it off and stuff it in a display box (to be stuffed in another closet).

I could probably save it for Claire, but what if she never marries? And really, I don't know a single person who wore their mother's gown, especially a gown off the rack at David's Bridal. Maybe earrings or veil or another piece to check off the something old category of superstition, but never the dress.

I'm in a purging mood. But I didn't want to just throw it away. So I'm donating it. I have the amazing husband and the perfect set of rings and three beautiful children from a marriage I'm honored to have.

But the dress? It's just a thing that isn't contingent on having a happy marriage or fulfilling life. And it's taking up a lot of space.

A nice girl from the city is coming this afternoon to pick it up and hopefully wear it for her own wedding day. And I couldn't be more elated (and maybe a little nervous to hand it over). But really, it would be so nice to gift it to someone who can use it again for their happiest day ever.


Brooke said... [Reply to comment]

How did you connect with the girl who is going to wear it?

Amelia said... [Reply to comment]


Caroline said... [Reply to comment]

Sweet of you. I want Mary to play dress up in mine (if she wants) and then I plan to donate it to the organization that makes them into baptismal gowns for babies who won't make it out of the NICU.

Mama Bear said... [Reply to comment]

You are beautiful! I love the big grins! I'm not quite ready to let go of my gown even though it is in a box in storage but I could give it up if I knew it was going to be lovingly worn again by someone who otherwise couldn't afford a fancy dress.

KMG2010 said... [Reply to comment]

Been thinking about mine as well, it does have a small stain on it but might be cleanable. It is a size 0 as I was less then 100 pounds when I wore it! But I was thinking about finding the place that will turn it into a burial gown for a child as well. How beautiful (and heartbreaking) that would be. Glad someone else will get to feel beautiful in your dress :)

Laura Jane said... [Reply to comment]

You are such a good person. I'm sure she will love it, and I love the thought someone out there is going to be so thrilled with their freebie. <3

I can't donate mine. I have too much hope one of my girls will want a piece of it in their dress. And I'm not as generous as you. lol