Saturday, September 20, 2008

The Wedding Dress Conundrum

Most brides wonder (and EVERY groom wonders, usually aloud): What are we going to do with this beautiful gown once the wedding's over? What DOES one do with an expensive wedding dress that was bought for hundreds or thousands of dollars, after its big moment has passed?

Here are a few options:

1. Have it cleaned and preserved.

Usually, people who do this have hopes that their daughter may wear it, or use part of it someday. Or, they're just too emotionally attached to let natural aging alter it over time!

Professional preservation costs around $120-$190. Another cost, at least in my book, is the fact that you can never try it on, again for at least 20 years! Many local dry cleaners offer this service, as well as many online vendors. Google "wedding gown preservation".

2. Another option (the path I had chosen), or really, just defaulted to, is this: The night of your wedding, after you've danced your First Dance, cut the cake, and celebrated your new marriage, simply stash your wedding dress back into its hanging bag and stuff it in an unsuspecting closet somewhere in your house. I like to think that it hangs there with echoes of dancing, cake and joy in its memory! (My more practical husband, always the pare-down-the-junk policeman, thinks it's a frivolous waste of space. Party pooper!)

3. Sell it! Try a consignment store or ebay! Many brides are more than happy to be a used-for-only-a-few-hours gown at a discounted rate. It's actually a great idea if you're planning a wedding on a budget. The only thing to remember is that you'll have to also pay for alterations costs, which can be pricey.

4. TRASH IT. There's a new trend is wedding photography and videography called "Trash the Dress." Brides are using their wedding gowns in high fashion photo shoots. The idea is to get one more use out of your expensive dress by going around town wearing it. It's a great opportunity to have fun and create some art without being nervous about getting your dress dirty. Check out this explanation on Good Morning America:

The cost of this photoshoot can be anywhere from $500 - $800 depending on whether the same videographer and photographer involved were the ones who shot your wedding. Many are now making a 'trash the dress' photo shoot part of a package. These photos will give you an idea of how the "trashing" can be done. You can trash it with no looking back, knowing this will be your dress' last day on earth, or you can have some more measured fun and retain the possibility of cleaning your dress afterward.

Here's a great "Trash the Dress" video:

As for me, I felt I should do some research into this popular trend. (I mean, how can I recommend something to my brides that I've never tried myself? If being good at my job means that I HAVE to sit for a high-fashion photo session (and have to get my hair and make up done for it...) don't I HAVE to do it?) :) SO... I took my precious 6-year-old dress out of the closet this past week, put it on and well... trashed it.

Stay tuned.


Chrys and Mike said...

1. impressed that you're willing to trash your dress.

2. impressed that you still fit in your wedding dress.

i couldn't do either. :)

but i can't WAIT to see your pics. i'm sure they are fabulous!


amo said...

hilarious!! Can't wait to see the pix! My dress is actually stuffed into an old dvd player box in the basement. I should at least hang it up, maybe.... Its pretty sad, its even handmade!!

nanno said...

Looking forward to seeing thses. Kort actually posted a couple teasers on her blog; so far so good!

AdventuresinOsteotomy said...

Can't wait to see you TTD pics! I'm pretty sure that the dress in the preservation picture is my friend's wedding dress. :)

yourweddingbyjen said...

I saw your pics on Simplytimeless' blog. holy cow you look amazing!!!Lucky girl.

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