Wedding Dress

February 15, 2012 by  

What Do You Do With Your  Wedding Dress AFTER The Wedding?

We all love our wedding dress and only getting to wear it for one day and then never use it again is tough, especially for those who spent really big bucks!

Wedding dress

There are several options for what you can do with your wedding dresses.

1) Sell them – on Craig’s List, ebay etc
2) Donate them – There are plenty of woman who can’t afford a nice wedding dress and would LOVE your generosity.
3) Save them  – You can have them preserved by a cleaners
4) Recycle them

For my first wedding I did the whole (preserving) the wedding dress routine. I remember paying $75 at Swann Cleaners back in 1982 (which was a lot of money back then, to me) in order for my dress to be packed up in a box… not to be opened until it was to be used again by my daughter. It was sealed.

So I moved that big box with me to each of my homes throughout my almost 20 years of marriage, never opening it, never breaking that seal.  When my divorce was pending I knew (having four boys) that I wasn’t going to have a daughter to wear it, and also knew it was out of style anyway. Some of my friends in my neighborhood and I had a fun idea. Another one of the gals also was going through a divorce. We decided to get out our wedding dresses and put them on!  (That will have to be another post! lol)

I was shocked to find that mine (opening the seal for the first time in 20 years) had yellowed spots on it.  So I couldn’t sell or donate it anyway.

What I did with my 2nd wedding dress.

When I married Dave, I knew that even if I kept my dress, the chances of my step daughter wanting to wear my dress was so minimal it was not worth keeping packed away.

I seriously considered donating it, but when I had an offer to make a memory quilt I decided to use part of my wedding dress.  I sent my dress off and they used part of the dress in the quilt and they also used part for a pillow.

Wedding dress

I love my pillow… it captures the bodice of the dress that I loved so much.

This is the back of the pillow which reflects that back of the train of the dress.

Wedding dress

The quilt company sent the rest of my dress back, so I had plenty of fabric.  I did had Christmas stockings made for myself and my step daughter that matched by a seamstress here in town.

wedding dress christmas stocking

I got an “S” for my stocking and an “E” for her’s.

wedding dress stocking


I also had her make several “silkies” that I will be able to give my Grandchildren (God willing). She made them about 12″ x 12″. The wedding dress silk fabric on one side and then I got a soft flannel with a baby pattern and had her back them with that.  You know how babies love the blankets that have that silky feeling on them?

Where is Your Wedding dress?

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23 Responses to “Wedding Dress”
  1. Mel says:

    I’d never thought of doing something like that. I love the idea of a stocking….and the “silkies.” That would just be so special. My wedding dress is in my cedar chest, actually.

  2. Julie says:

    Mine has been wrapped & boxed for 18 years & is in the loft. Kept for a daughter, alas with no children what shall I do with it? Not too sure I could cut it up, but your post has planted the seeds….

  3. I preserved my dress, thinking that if we had a daughter, she could make adjustments to it and wear it. But, alas, we had a son.

    Since then, I’m thinking that (when I get to be a better seamstress) I will do something with the material. I love the pillow and the silkies ideas. I better put it on Pinterest so I don’t forget.

  4. Sandy says:

    Thanks Julie, I would say unpack it and decide if you think you want to donate it for someone else to wear or use it somehow to display the memories.

  5. OneMommy says:

    I never would have thought to do that with my dress. How beautiful! I wore my mother’s dress – over 30 years old and stored in a cardboard box all that time. So far my dress is stored in tissue paper in my closet… Maybe one day my own daughter will wear it, maybe not. If not, I’ll have to remember your great ideas!

  6. Sandy says:

    Oh.. that is neat that you did wear your mother’s dress. As often as so many of us want that to happen, often times it doesn’t. Glad the ideas are there! Thanks

  7. Sigh. The thought of parting with it… though I have thought about it. Thanks for being so candid, Sandy. Your pillows are gorgeous, too.

  8. Clare Kumar says:

    My dress is boxed and in the basement. For our ten year anniversary, I took it out, put it on and at the end of the work day waited for my husband on the front steps of our house. We took some great photos with the kids. My goal is to do that on our 15th anniversary and so on… Then one day, my daughter can alter it, cut it up, do whatever she wants with it.

  9. Sandy says:

    I love that! It’s also great that you can still fit into it! :)

  10. Sandy says:

    Thanks Joanna. I LOVE it because I can see it every day. I have part of the dress in a quilt too, that I’ll be blogging on soon. :)

  11. marishannon says:

    I love the pillow! My mom cut up mine to make a baby blessing gown for my son. I may use the scraps to make a silkie.

  12. Sandy says: that idea. Not sure how long ago that was, but something you can do with the gown… 1) frame it 2) put it on a larger teddy bear and enjoy it. thanks for sharing!

  13. Janeen says:

    Mine I gave to my older sister to use for SCA events (society for creative anachronism). I don’t think she ever actually wore the dress but it was custom made by a local woman who made dresses for Renaissance fairs and my dress had more of that feel to it than a traditional wedding dress. While it was a beautiful dress, I wasn’t THAT attached to it and so thought if she could get some use out of it, that would be better than it sitting around collecting dust. I kept other mementos from the wedding like my veil (which was a head piece with ribbons so actually could be used for play) and the garter.

    I have also read of wedding dresses being cut and made into a baptism gown. That would also be really pretty and probably more of a keepsake than as a wedding dress (since baptism gowns tend to get more use than wedding dresses).

  14. Sandy says:

    That sounds great Janeen. I also love the idea of the baptism gown. I only had boys and didn’t do the white gowns for them, but that would have been nice to have done with my original gown. I do wish I had put it to use rather than keeping it boxed up and eventually throwing it away after it had yellowed. But so happy that I can look at my pillow every day in my room and think of our wedding.
    I do still have some of the fabric from my current dress that I reused… not sure if enough for a baptismal gown for a grandchild or not, but thanks for the idea.

  15. Kristi says:

    Both my sister and I wore my mom’s dress for our wedding…unusual to get 3 uses out of 1 dress I know! I knew it probably wouldn’t make to the next generation so I’ve a friend who sews and she has been making me handkerchiefs for my nieces and nephews….so far I’ve had one nephew wear it in his front coat pocket and a niece wrap it around her bouquet stems. I love the pillow idea, I might do that with some of the left over fabric. Oh, and I had a friends have some bible covers made from hers! Its nice to get some ideas, thanks!

  16. Those are such neat ideas! I love the idea of having lovies made for the grandbabies!

  17. Sandy, This is hilarious. I just had this conversation with someone today about what to do. I love these ideas. I certainly will pass them on. thanks

  18. Sandy says:

    Thanks Melanie!

  19. Sandy says:

    Thanks Randi. Hoping someday I’ll be able to put them to good use! lol

  20. JULIA K. says:


  21. Ashley says:

    What great ideas. I haven’t even had my dress preserved and cleaned! It’s been hanging in a closet since I got married 3 years ago. For now, I plan on preserving it just in case I have a daughter who can wear it. Otherwise, I love the idea of getting some other things made out of it.

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