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  • Writer's pictureMJ

It's time to donate the dress

Lately I've found myself staring at a white box.

This large, sealed box has been sitting on the same shelf in the laundry area of my basement for more than six years. It's presence has never bothered me as much as it has in the last few weeks.

What's inside? A clean and well-preserved 16-year-old wedding dress.

Here are the facts (maybe you can relate):

  • It wasn't a fancy dress, but it's still the most expensive dress I have ever purchased.

  • My children won't want it (although they do like to play with my wedding shoes). Besides, I want them to have their own “picking out the dress” memories someday.

  • I don't want to open up the box a few decades from now and find yellow, disintegrating material.

  • I've moved the massive box three times.

  • I genuinely feel it's time to find the dress a new home. To give it to someone who needs it or can make something wonderful from it.

I'm not interested in selling the dress so I did some research into donation options. There are many, and here are some highlights:

  • The Angel Gown Program turns donated wedding dresses into free, beautiful burial gowns for infants who pass away during their hospital stay. All of the burial gowns are handmade by volunteer seamstresses across the country.

  • Wish Upon a Wedding grants weddings and vow renewals for couples facing serious illness or a life-altering circumstance.

  • Adorned in Grace accepts used wedding gowns for re-sale in its shop in Portland, Oregon. Gowns can be mailed to the shop for donation. The shop donates all proceeds to raise awareness of and prevent human trafficking.

  • Deployments, financial hardships, and other challenges unique to servicemen and women can make it difficult to plan a wedding. Brides Across America helps make dreams come true by giving a military bride a free wedding gown during a Brides Across America's Nationwide Gown Giveaway. Events are held twice a year in partnership with bridal salons across the country. 

Someday soon while I'm waiting for the wash cycle to finish I'm going to grab a step stool, and pull that gigantic, dust-covered box off the shelf. It's comforting to know there are wonderful organizations that will find it a new home.


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