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What to do with your dress after your wedding

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What do you do with your wedding dress after your wedding?  This is something that I have wondered about for a long time. What do most people do with their dress after the big day?  There are a lot of things that you can do with it, but sometimes they sound good in theory but when it comes to the crunch, I wonder how many of them I, personally, could go through with.

The first one, and I know that I couldn’t do it, is sell your dress. There are hundreds of places online and there are literally thousands of dresses on ebay. For me there is too much sentimental value to be able to sell my dress! I just cannot bear the idea of selling it. I’m not really sure why, but I just can’t contemplate it.

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Another thing you could do is a ‘trash the dress’ photo shoot, it is something that I’ve blogged about in the past and seems like a fun idea.  A fun idea for a get together is to  host a bridal party, where you and some girlfriends and all dress up in your wedding dresses and sip champagne and have a laugh. This would be a great way to do some charity fund-raising for a great cause if you couldn’t bear to part with your dress but wanted to do your bit for some of the wedding dress charities.

One idea I really like, which for years is something that I have always intended to do.  I have always had ideas of repurposing my dress. Perhaps a christening gown for a baby. Or using it for something special to pass on to my children or for relatives to have with them on their own special day. A lovely handbag, handmade handkerchief or maybe a vintage fabric garter. Or perhaps sew some part of it into the hem of their dress or use the fabric to wrap around their flowers. It would be a nice touch to make the cushion that the rings are carried on by the page boy, or it could be used in the making of a wedding patchwork quilt.  I also have my mother in laws dress and I thought that this could be a way to include her in future family weddings now that she has passed away. I remember her asking me to try it on, many years ago when my husband and I had only been together a short amount of time. The dress holds happy memories for me and represents a part of a really happy time in her life. Like most dresses do.

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There are some wonderful organisations that you can donate your dress to if you don’t have the space or feel like you want to share the love. There are some great charities in the US that do some great work, Brides against Breast Cancer, is a great idea. I can’t seem to find anything like it in Australia though.

One wonderful idea that I have recently heard about, is an organisation called Angel Gowns Australia. They take wedding dresses and make clothes for Angel Babies. They are made and given to families when the are going through something that is so heartbreaking, so that it is one less thing for them to think about.  You can read more about them here.

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Now it’s time for me to have a long hard think about why to do with my dress.

Thank-you to the guys at Vision House Photography for the photos again this week. Check out their new website here and their facebook page here.

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Post wedding day blues

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Once all of the excitement of your wedding day is over – often it can be very difficult to settle in. You have had your big day and it was one of the greatest experiences of your life thus far, it can be hard to accept the big day is over – all of the planning and stress is no more.  There are no more dates set in the calendar, no more bridal showers or hens days – this can often be a little disheartening.

There are quite a few things you can do to keep yourself busy and help keep those lovely memories from your special day alive.

Thank you cards

This is a job that should be done close to the wedding date, it is a good gesture and is easily done earlier rather than later, while you can still remember who gave you what gift. It’s good to write a custom letter to each person, whether is it about a gift given or a lovely moment you shared at the wedding, rather than just a generic message. This can be time consuming but enjoying resurfacing beautiful memories of your wedding day.

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Save the cake

Saving the cake is a old tradition from when couples got married to have children and the cake could be used around the couples first anniversary when the child was to be christened, the tradition is still popular for different reasons. However with the wide variety of cakes today, you need to be aware not all cakes or top tiers will freeze well. It is something you will need to research before committing to.

Preserve your dress

You have spent a considerable amount of time and money on your wedding dress, you may want to do some research into having your dress professionally cleaned and then decide if you are going to store it away, or possibly sell it. This is totally up to you; depending on how sentimental you are or if you think you may never wear it again and want to make some money back while it is still in fashion.

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Keep your Bouquet

This is something a lot of people don’t really think about, and again it depends if you have a floral bouquet (you can read my blogs about bouquets here). You may decide to research the different options on preserving your bouquet. If you choose to have flowers you can have them dried, pressed, or freeze dried. These things vary in cost and some of them you can do yourself. You may decide to frame them – I have heard lately of people framing them with your wedding certificate or with all the beautiful good luck keepsakes.

Wedding Album

This might take a little while to come to you and may depend on your photographer and package you have purchased – this is an exciting prospect. Whether you go to the studio and work out an album with your photographer, or you get the digital files and spend time designing your own album. It can be a challenging and time consuming project, but something that is worth the time. Those of you who read my blog regularly will know how strongly I feel about great photos and these being some of the best memories, I think this is time well invested and I don’t know of anyone who has put time into a wedding album and been disappointed with the result.

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Memory scrap book

It may take time for you to get your photos back from your photographer, some take a while and some seem to get them to you quite quickly, in the meantime you might want to get photos from your friends and family, and get bits and pieces from the ceremony. I did this as I wanted to have something to share with people and I knew it would take a while to get the final album from the photographer (there wasn’t the joy of digital photography back then, nor could I have a great instagram hashtag for people to check out photos from the day) so I used things like the order of service booklet, menus from the tables and photos from family and friends with different perspectives of our special day.

Sell off the things you no longer need

This can be a great way to keep busy and work out what things you want to keep and what you can live without. Especially if you have spent a lot of money on table decorations, you could sell it on eBay, or Gumtree, as a set or you could split it up and sell them separately.

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Start to plan something new

Depending whether you went straight on your honeymoon or not you might like to plan a holiday or honeymoon (you can read about Honeymoon decisions I previously blogged about here). Otherwise you might want to plan a girls or boys weekend away or a weekend away with your husband or a bit of a reunion weekend with some friends you didn’t feel you spent enough time with since your wedding.  A big dinner party is a great alternative or something else you can enjoy with your friends and family.

Do you have any great post-wedding tips for people who feel a little ‘lost’ after their big day?

A big thank-you to Kirralee for the use of her lovely photos, check out the link to the blog about this wedding here.

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Filed under wedding ideas, Wedding Planning, wedding tips