Friday, July 15, 2011

What To Do With An Old Bridesmaid Dress and Other Wedding Related News

What To Do With An Old Bridesmaid Dress

Like me, I am sure many of you have stood up for a friend or two as they started down the path of married life. If you are a guy, you have it easy (and much less expensive) than the ladies. Rent a tux and done. As my female readers know, we must purchase a dress that we will unlikely wear again. Out of six weddings, only one bridesmaid dress is one that I plan to wear again (hopefully on September 10, 2011!). Many people have a closet full of dresses much like Katherine Heigl in 27 Dresses. So today we will explore some options for those never to be worn again frocks!

This is a tricky option but can help you recoup a little cash for your dress. Your success at consignment is going to have a lot to do with the style and color of your dress. Could it pass for a prom dress or special occasion dress? Then you will have better luck. One of my dresses sold for $80 and I made $40. My initial investment before alterations was $130 so I was able to recoup a third of the cost. Be sure you understand all of the perimeters at the consignment shop so that there are no surprises on the back end. The particular shop I used had a window of time that they would try to sell your dress. Once that time was up, you had to pick up the dress or they would donate it to charity.

Personally this is one of my favorite options. There are wonderful organizations all of over the country that collect old prom, bridesmaid, and other special occasion dresses and provide them to underprivileged high school girls so that they can attend prom in style. Some of these organizations will also take shoes and accessories so it can be a one stop to donate an entire look. There are several sites that will help you find places to donate but seems to be the most comprehensive.

I recently learned of a company that will allow you to exchange a bridesmaid dress for a new, stylish, black dress. NewlyMaid only accepts dresses that are in top condition (no rips, stains, etc) but in exchange for your old dress you will get a significant discount on one of their new dresses. The old dresses are either recycled into new yarn or donated to charity. Check out their site for additional details.

This option only really works if you are crafty but can be the most fun! I have a dress that unfortunately has permanent stains on it do to a fellow bridesmaid's inability to hold her liquor. NONE of the other options will work with this particular dress so I am probably going to eventually turn it into a Halloween costume. If your dress has a large stain free area to work with, the fabric can be turned into a variety of items - pillows, skirt, top, wrap, table runner, etc. The only limit is your creativity!

Hopefully you have lucked out and your dress is as fashion forward as our dresses from this Fall 2009 wedding!

Other Wedding Related News

A few weeks ago I blogged about wedding gifting. Real Simple has also published their take on these age old questions. What do you think? Did they get it right?

TOMS Wedding Shoes
TOMS shoes is now offering a wedding collection. Perfect for the couple that wants to put a eco/philanthropy spin on their special day. As you may recall, TOMS donates one pair of shoes for every pair purchased to a child in need. Personally, I have never worn this brand of shoes but they look very comfortable. Even for the bride that wants a sexier shoe for the ceremony and photos might enjoy changing into these little flats once the dancing kicks off!

Heather - today's entry is for you! Thanks for being a loyal reader!


  1. Thanks Gretchen for the shout out! Reposting now!

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