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What Do You Do With Your Bridal Gown After Tying the Knot? 5 Fun Ideas

First comes love, then comes marriage... then comes a really expensive bridal gown you will probably never wear again. 

I totally get it, wedding dresses have a ton of sentimental value that you want to hold on to for as long as you can. For some people, that means keeping it in storage in the hopes that one day, a future daughter or female relative will wear it again. But what if you have no desire to hold on to it? Maybe you don't have the storage, maybe you're not nostalgic by nature, or maybe you're smart enough to realize that whatever style of dress you wore might not be fashionable 35 years from now (sorry). 

Instead of holding on to your dress and having it collect dust in a grimy basement, I've come up with five fun ideas of what to do with your bridal gown after you've walked down the aisle and cut the cake. 


1. Sell It

If you're really hard up for cash (weddings are pretty expensive, after all), then there's no shame in putting your wedding gown up for sale. Brides-to-be will love the idea of getting your great dress at a discount price, even if it was previously worn. Through sites like eBay and PreOwnedWeddingDresses.com, selling your dress is as easy as tossing a bouquet. 


2. Donate It

Brides against Breast Cancer

If you're feeling charitable, then donating your dress is the way to go. Companies such as Brides for a Cause collect previously worn wedding gowns for women underoing financial hardships (you can mail to their Portland location from anywhere in the U.S.), and Brides Against Breast Cancer donates proceeds to programs for cancer patients and families. 


3. Cut Pieces for Future Relatives

Image via Stay Forever Photo

If you don't want to hold on to the entire dress, you can always cut pieces of it off to make hankerchiefs or even veils for your family members down the line. How precious would it be if your great-grandaughter had a piece of your dress sewn into her own wedding space suit gown for her Mars wedding in 2087?


4. Frame It & Display It

Image via Bravo

Keeping your gorgeous gown in a trunk in some dingy attic sounds like a waste. If you have the space for it, consider framing and displaying your dress in a large shadow box. Adriane Maloof had her wedding gown proudly hung in her massive closet on the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills (before she got divorced, that is). Other women have kept them in their living rooms, bed rooms or home offices; wherever there is wall space and a high ceiling. 


5. Trash the Dress

Image via JAGStudios

If you want another excuse for a glamorous photo shoot, then consider a trendy Trash the Dress photo shoot. It's a fun way to get another use out of your wedding gown and take some gorgeous and shocking photos. Take your dress for a muddy ATV ride, spill some Merlot on it at a local winery or let your kids go crazy with some fingerpaint. Check out our gallery for more Trash the Dress ideas, and have one last hoorah in your famous frock.

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Meet our Writer
Jennifer Geddes
Celebrations Writer

Jennifer Kelly Geddes has hosted Christmas cookie swaps, New Year's open houses, Thanksgiving for 22, and all manner of dinner parties in her Manhattan and Ghent, NY homes.

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