Posted by: eliperrin | March 21, 2011

The Wedding Dress Project

For the past six months, I’ve been racking my brain, trying to figure out what to do with my wedding dress. Should I cough up the dough to have it cleaned and professionally boxed? Or as my mother recommended, hang it on the wall so Luke and I can bask in all its glory? Haha.

Meanwhile, my poor little dress has just been sitting in my closet all by her lonesome.  It really made me sad to think that in her short life, she only had one day in the sun, only one day of glory. She was such a beautiful dress and did such a good job at making me feel absolutely stunning on my day; she really deserved at least one more spin on the dance floor.

So, I’ve decided that the best way to honor our day and the dress is to donate her to another bride on a budget, ensuring she dances again. I’ve searched for wedding dress donation options around Southern California and haven’t really found much, so I’m going the route.

Here’s the 411. I’ll give my dress away to one lucky bride, as long as you:

a.) tell me a little about your wedding story and why you want it, so that I can share the dress’ whole story on my blog.

b.) use the dress for your wedding or re-donate it if it doesn’t fit (I don’t want it being sold or used in a non-wedding related project).

c.) let me know how the dress and your special day turned out by reposting in my blog, pictures appreciated, but optional.

d.) after your wedding is over, donate it to another bride to be (if it’s still in good enough shape), and tell them where the dress came from so we can keep the story going as long as possible.

It’s that simple!

Here are the details of the dress.

1. Purchased at David’s Bridal for a pretty penny.

2. Needs minor cleaning; my husband and I washed the hem in a few areas, and the dirt came right out, so we know it can be cleaned and worn again.

3. Besides some minor dirt on the hem, it’s in great condition, with no rips or tears.

4.Measurements= bust:36″, waist: 30″, hips: 38″, length: 57″, from shoulder to floor. I am a short, smallish girl at 5’3″, so it will only fit someone with similar measurements.

5. It has a long train and is pre-bustled.

6. Is covered in intricate glass beading and sequins

7. Comes with a silk sash, but you might want to buy a new one.

If interested, comment on this blog or send me an email. Feel free to check out my Craigslist post, as well. I’ve also posted some pictures. Enjoy!

Free Wedding Dress

Free Wedding Dress

Free Wedding Dress

Free Wedding Dress



  1. I love this idea. We are doing a wedding on a teeny, tiny budget and my wedding dress budget is $100 (that is not a typo). So basically, I could never afford something this nice on my own. We are getting married in May of 2012 and honestly, I never thought that I would be engaged so I never dreamed about what my wedding dress would look like. I think that I could feel really beautiful in this dress and would love to have you share my day through the use of it. thank you so much for the opportunity!

    • Hi Cris, thanks for your comment! I just sent you an email. You have first dibs on the dress as the first to comment and especially considering that you’re getting married in the Texas Hill Country, my old stomping grounds. 😉

  2. I want to say I think what you are doing is fantastic. I am getting married in 16 days and I am sooo excited. I already have my dress, but I wanted to tell you that I did something exactly like this using craigslist for my first wedding gown. (I had stored it in a rubbermaid storage tub in my closet for 14 years. It still was in perfect condition, can you believe that? Anyhow, I knew when I got remarried, that I would not wear the same gown, so I decided to give it away. I posted an ad on craigslist and asked those who wanted the gown to tell me why they thought they deserved it. I got about 4 good stories out of the responses and the condition was that the gown had to fit the bride. I ended up giving my veil, gown, shoes… the whole nine yards to one very special girl who had overcome a whole lot to get where she was and it was so rewarding. I congratulate you and send you many blessings for your efforts to bless someone else. May your life be filled with happiness and love.

    • Thank you Rachel. Your comment is so touching. I love that there are other people out there doing this, too! It has been such a blessing to hear so many brides’ stories.

      Congrats on your upcoming marriage! I’d love to hear all about your wedding day and feature you on the blog if you’d like. Just let me know.

      Sending many blessings to you and your husband to be, as well. Enjoy every moment of your big day!

  3. what a wonderful idea! is the dress still available?
    My fiance and I are planning a very small wedding at the end of this year and we have a $3,000 budget for a Miami wedding. Yup. $3,000. The amount most brides here spend on their wedding dress! Needless to say, it’s been quite an adventure to try and create a lovely wedding under the circumstances.

    We are young and in love, but pretty broke. I have been looking for a full time job for the last 2 years (!) and my fiance is a social worker who works with Safe Families (, an organization that helps at-risk kids stay with their families and keep them from going into the systen. Though his job is greatly fulfilling, it’s also not the best paying.

    I just love this dress. The measurements are pretty close to mine ( I’m 4’11, 36,28,38) and I would never have the chance to wear something so beautiful on my wedding day. If the dress is still availabe, I would love the opportunity to wear it and pass it along to another bride 🙂

    • Thank you Merari. I really appreciate your kind words, and your story is beautiful. I have promised the dress to another bride, but would love to feature your wedding story on the blog, and try to help you connect with a bride who is donating her dress if you would like. Good luck in your wedding dress hunt. I am sure you will find the perfect dress for you and will look and feel beautiful.

      Wishing you many blessings for your marriage.


  4. Great idea! I would love to do this with my dress but I am pretty sure I can’t. My aunt made my dress and although it was a hugely generous and precious gift, I think it makes me stuck with it for the rest of… her life. Don’t think she would be too happy if I gave it away or did a fun but risky photo shoot with it. Pretty sure I will have to lie if she ever asks if I’ve had it cleaned and preserved yet (been stored in a rubbermade tub for a year and a half).

    Still wanted to give you kudos for your idea! I hope you find the right bride for it!

    • Thank you Kendra. I really appreciate the compliment. Honestly, if my aunt had made my dress, I would keep it, too. That’s a family heirloom that you should be proud of (not that I am not proud of my dress, but it doesn’t have the same story behind it) and will have very significant meaning should you choose to pass it down to family members in the future.

      Best wishes!


  5. Thanks everyone for the kind words! I am really amazed by the feedback I’ve gotten on this and all the wonderful stories I’ve been blessed to hear. I have promised the dress to a beautiful bride to be, who will be featured in this blog shortly. I wish I had more dresses to give away because I would give them to you all.

    The feedback from this post has inspired me a lot, and I really feel that there needs to be some sort of forum for making this available to more brides. I know I had a very hard time trying to find a way to donate my dress, which is why I posted it here.

    If anyone would like me to feature their wedding story on this blog or have me help them find a home for their dress. I’d be more than happy to do so. Together, we can keep the Wedding Dress Project going. 🙂

    Again, thank you from the bottom of my heart.

  6. Hello,
    I read your post, and I am wondering if you still have your dress? I am a bride on a very tight budget, and it’s difficult to find a dress that fits the ocassion for the budget that we have set? My fear is that I won’t find anything that I love, and for once I wanted to have something that I love instead of something that I settled for!
    If you still ahve your dress and are still doing the project please contact me!

    • Hi Chanthany,

      Yes, the dress has been donated to another bride. But stay tuned. I am in the process of building a site where more brides can donate their dresses and keep the wedding dress project going.

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