I got married in a light blue dress I bought for about $100 at what used to be The Bon. I remember the elderly saleswoman who rang up my purchase, smiling sweetly at me and asking me if I was buying it for prom.

I had to wear these weird boob stickers under it on my wedding day, since it didn’t allow for any kind of support garment. I also wore clear plastic heels.


So, to recap: cheap fake satin dress, boob stickers, hooker shoes. I was the classiest bride ever.

The dress has been hanging in the back of a closet ever since. Not stored or preserved or even slightly protected: just hanging there gathering dust and crumpling on the floor.

I dug it out in 2008 and took some photos, just for fun. I learned that if I needed boob stickers in 2001, I would need something more like an anti-gravity device to wear it now.


I do think it’s pretty, but let’s be honest: I’ll never wear it again, it’s hardly the sort of heirloom you pass down for someone else’s wedding, and even if it were, I have two boys, and if it turns out either one of them wants to wear a dress on their wedding day, not that there’s anything wrong with that, I’m guessing they will want to choose their own.

So this weekend, as I was neck-deep in the process of cleaning out our various storage areas, I laid the dress on the pile of junk we were taking to the thrift store. I figured I have the photos and the memories and now I could reclaim the closet space.

JB, however, reacted as though I’d pulled off my wedding ring and hurled it in the toilet. “What the hell,” he complained. “What the HELL.”

“Listen,” I told him. “This is not a metaphor. This is cleaning.”

But it was no use. Back to the closet it went. Along with, I will confess, the clear plastic shoes. Because you never know when those might come in handy, like if I need to compete in a beauty pageant or offer to blow a guy for a dime bag of coke.

Tell me, what did you do with your dress? Is it professionally stored? Being worn by your daughter? Stuffed in the back of a closet to be ignored for a decade at a time?


217 Responses to “Sentimental storage”

  1. Sandi on July 21st, 2010 7:23 pm

    Back of the closet! Have not worn it since! That was sweet of the hubs to get upset…

  2. elz on July 21st, 2010 7:56 pm

    Mine is hanging in my closet. I take it out every few years and spin. I know it’s silly. So what-it still fits. I’m also secretly hoping one of my girls wants to wear it, maybe not for their wedding, but for something.

  3. lee on July 21st, 2010 8:34 pm

    i wore a cheap $29 polyester dress from sears,bought at the last minute. i think we ended up using it to wash our bad ass trans am a few years later.

  4. wm on July 22nd, 2010 6:16 am

    Sold on ebay, immediately after the wedding.

  5. Em on July 22nd, 2010 7:12 am

    I am so glad I am not the only one whose dress is stuffed in the back of closet, unpreserved and uncleaned. I feel guilty everytime I look at it! I can’t seem to get rid of it, though. Right now I am saving it for my hypothetical daughter.

  6. Eclecta on July 22nd, 2010 9:11 am

    Awww … he wuvs you!!!!

    I’m a long-time single gal who’s okay being single, but I think you’re very lucky to have a partner who loves you so much that YOUR DRESS matters. I’d be a tad jealous, but I’m happy for you and think you deserve it. :)

  7. Jenn on July 22nd, 2010 9:51 am

    In the back of the closet, still dirty from the reception. 7 years ago.

  8. Tracy on July 22nd, 2010 11:41 am

    I took mine to a seamstress and made a christening gown out of it. Sheesh I had so much satin on my dress she made the gown and an accompanying blanket.

    One of the BEST things I ever did. Both my boys wore it at their baptisms and hopefully someday all my grandchildren will wear it too.

  9. Sonia on July 22nd, 2010 2:51 pm

    Mine is hanging in our guest room closet, and the accompanying HUGE ASS train is in a white plastic bag. On the floor of the closet. I think my veil is on a hanger with a plastic bag over it?
    I won’t be having any daughters, and have no idea what to do with that dress. Though I’ve got some good ideas from some of your previous commenters, thanks!

  10. clover on July 23rd, 2010 12:40 am

    What a great topic (and FTR it’s great that you still fit into yours AND look fabulous, not like a sausage) —

    Mine is hanging in my closet in a garment bag. Not preserved. It was about $1500 after the veil and tax (from La Belle MarieƩ in Kirkland). It was the FIRST dress I tried on, even after trying on countless others, that was the one. My mom bought it for me (married 9/04).

    My mom died in 2008, 3 months after I had my daughter. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to get rid of it, because I still remember my mom’s face in the 3 way mirror behind me when I tried it on.

    Plus my little daughter; maybe she’ll want some part of it one day. Although I have my mom’s old wedding dress boxed up in the garage, hideous 1960s tulle disaster. Mine is MUCH cuter, I’m sure my daughter won’t feel the same about my dress as I do about my mom’s. Right??? ;)

    (ps – Sundry, have you ever been to Country Village in Bothell? If you’re ever there, make your way to the back, to the Courtyard Hall. I think they’re still using our wedding photos for their advertising… just a random, you can know that girl is one of your readers)

  11. veralynn on July 23rd, 2010 5:37 pm

    Glad you posted this. We’re getting married in 2 months and this made me discover he prefers I keep it too. No “trash the dress” shots for us I guess! :)

  12. h on July 27th, 2010 2:59 pm

    In case you need to offer to blow a guy for a dime bag of coke!! I almost died laughing.

    Yeah, mine’s shoved in the back of the closet. Never even had it drycleaned.

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  14. Carla on July 30th, 2010 7:30 am

    I rented my wedding dress. I don’t think a lot of people do that, but I did just that 10 years ago coming up in Feb 2011

  15. Amy on August 1st, 2010 8:00 am
  16. Suzanne on September 17th, 2010 3:51 pm

    Just a few weeks ago I tried on my wedding dress – a knit-wool mid-calf long-sleeved ivory creation with a smudge of dirt on the shoulder that I bought off the deep discount rack at Saks Fifth Avenue nearly 23 years ago – and it still fit. I had needed a dress that didn’t require any sort of needlework to make it fit because I was getting married just a few days later (long story, but very romantic!). I was very pleased that it still fit, even if it was because it was a knit fabric and, therefore, stretchy. There were many moth holes in it. And then I remembered that my husband had long ago thrown away his suit. I really had no problem tossing that dress in the trash. I still have the pictures, and the dress looked much better in dim light than it did in full sun!

  17. Cat on May 22nd, 2011 8:11 pm

    It just so happens that I was doing a little cleaning of my own this weekend and stumbled upon my daughter’s christening and commmunion dresses. I remembered thinking that I was going to have them professionally preserved just like my wedding dress. It has been 20 years and so just to remember what “professionally preserved” ment, I pulled my wedding dress out. Yep, I would do the same for my daughgter’s dresses. However, the price had now tripled. O.K. so I would do it myself. Find a an acid free box, etc., etc. Anyway that’s how I stumbled upon this sight. I have had my wedding dress sitting in my closet, professional preserved, for 20 years. It will soon be joined by 2 other dresses. When I took it out to reminisce and showed my daughter what a precious heirloom she would someday have, her comment was…”Mom that dress looks so 80’s. Besides, I think I’m going to get my own.”

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