If your love story does not sound like a cookie-cutter one, then why should your choice of wedding decisions be one? Whether you consider yourself to be a green goddess or you want to take a step back from the bandwagon of adding to the waste materials that come from the wedding industry and make a statement on your wedding day, choosing a used wedding gown is becoming one of the favorite choices in the bride realm. Eco-friendly wedding decisions are becoming popular in the wedding industry, especially among modern to-be married couples who want to make a difference and take a step towards a greener and cleaner planet. Probably one of the best ways to reduce your carbon footprint on the earth, value-based wedding planning will not only ease all the stress and tension regarding this high-pressure situation of wedding planning but also help you to make a positive impact on the world and its habitants.
If you are an eco-conscious bride, who is looking to buy a wedding dress, then choosing a hand-me-down wedding gown or buying a second-hand wedding dress can be the best place to start your eco-friendly wedding planning. Many brides opt for recycling their wedding dress once the wedding is over but buying a used bridal gown can be your first step for sustainable wedding planning which will help you set off on the right foot as you enter this exciting chapter of life. Perfect for vintage lover brides, pre-owned wedding gowns, or hand-me-down bridal dresses can also reverberate the love you hold for the person who gave you her wedding dress. You have decided to wear your mother's wedding dress or it's your mother-in-law's 50-year-old wedding dress straight out of her vintage closet, wearing a hand-me-down wedding dress is the best way to translate you are love for vintage sophistication and all things classic.
Brides-to-be devote so much of their wedding planning time to thinking about their wedding gowns and spend days and even months scouring stores for their ideal designs. Your wedding gown is much more than just a bridal outfit, it is the dress that will witness your life change when you walk down the aisle and will hold significant emotional value throughout your lifetime. When you and your better half announce your dream engagement, along with planning for all the wedding details, finding the perfect wedding gown will still be one of your favorite hunts throughout this process. But what if your perfect wedding gown is tucked away in a family member's closet? Whether you are stuck with a hand-me-down wedding dress from your potential mother-in-law or your grandmother always wanted to see you in the heirloom wedding dress that has been passed on for generations, heirloom hand me downs bridal gowns can be the perfect choice for vintage wedding gown lovers. While an average machine made wedding gown can cost up to $500 and a designer wedding gown can cost as much as $5000, many budget-conscious brides who do not want to pay that much for a dress that she will wear only once finds a passed down wedding gown a viable alternative.
Right from saving money during wedding planning to bringing a plethora of emotional significance to the table, wearing a hand-me-down wedding gown is the best way to make use of what you already have. Along with carrying so many memories and stories in each fold, an heirloom wedding gown that smells of precious memories can take you to the good old days on your wedding day. If you do not have any plans regarding your wedding dress post-wedding, there is a fair chance that it will be sitting in a closet or attic for a long time to come, adding to the pile of clothes you already own. There are many companies coming up with innovative ideas like- companies for reselling your wedding dress, brands that refurbish bridal gowns, brands that donate wedding dresses to cancer survivors, and organizations that recycle wedding dresses. But right now if you are stuck with a ghastly hand-me-down wedding dress or a 50-year-old wedding dress with puffed-up sleeves and styling features that is so out of date, here are some ways you can deal with hand-me-down wedding dresses.
• If it's hard to say no
You and your love have just now announced your engagement and this was the moment your mother-in-law was waiting for ages to bring out her 60-year-old wedding dress. It can be a really sticky situation where saying no is not an option. It is not like she wants you to save on your wedding budget, but it is about wedding traditions. If this is the heirloom wedding dress that has stayed with the family for generations, it is not surprising that she would like you to wear the dress her mother wore and which she wore to her own wedding. But the sheer sight of the wedding dress might want to make you run in the opposite direction! In this situation when your better half is asking you to shop for a brand new crisp white wedding gown, and you do not want to hurt your mother-in-law as well, you have to deal with this very affably and courteously.
You can opt to wear this hand-me-down wedding dress for your wedding rehearsal and have your photoshoot in her wedding dress, which will be later on added to the wedding photo album. But if the wedding dress is in very bad condition and needs massive alteration and the cost of repairing the dress is too high, which is equivalent to the prices of more fashionable wedding dresses that you have been eyeing for a long time, then the haywire wedding budget might convince her to take it back without bruising her hopes and pride, resulting in a good end between both of you.
• Coping with heirloom bridal dresses
If the heirloom wedding dress has stayed in the family for more than 95 years, and it is an unbroken tradition for brides of the family to wear the vintage wedding dress that has been passed on for generations, there is nothing you can do but wear the heirloom bridal dress on your wedding day. Generally, heirloom bridal gowns are kept in very good condition as they are taken care of with the motive of passing them down to future generations. Heirloom wedding gowns are usually ordered from foreign countries or manufactured by top bridal couturiers, and you can expect to see intricate French lacework or intricate mother of pearl beadwork straight from Japan.
Since there are so many brides in the family who has already worn or are going to wear the heirloom bridal dress, the alterations have to be really skillful and artistic. For instance, if the wedding dress is too long for you it cannot be shortened because in the future if a taller bride walks into the house, she might not be able to use it, and if it is too long, then ask your seamstress to shorten it without damaging the quality of the bridal dress fabric. You will be wearing your groom's family's crown jewels when you decide to wear their heirloom bridal dress. You can always pair your wedding dress with a pair of imported Italian bridal shoes or heavily embellished bridal jewelry straight from Abu Dhabi to compensate for wearing the family treasure.
• Altering the hand-me-down wedding dress
However you may loathe wearing that 95-year-old hand-me-down wedding dress, you cannot ignore the unfaltering romantic and whimsy ring to it. But if you are a bride who wouldn't like second-hand wedding dresses, then you can alter and refurbish your wedding dress, to fit the vision of your dream wedding dress. But warn your groom's family beforehand as they may no longer recognize the drastic adjustments that will be made to the wedding dress. There also might be a fair chance that your mother-in-law might change her mind about giving you the family wedding dress in fear of mutilation! But if she gives you a green signal then go ahead and alter your wedding dress to suit your taste and unique personality, and accessorize your perfect bridal gown to match the style statements that you have been looking to create.
Wearing a hand-me-down gown is something many brides consider, especially if the dress has sentimental meaning or is a family heirloom. Certain questions should be answered before finalizing the decision to go with something vintage. When considering a vintage or hand-me-down gown, there are certain questions brides-to-be should ask before agreeing to wear an heirloom or hand-me-down dress.
• What is the size of the wedding dress?
It is much easier to restitch your wedding gown to make it smaller in size, rather than adding fabric to the gown to match its original fabric. Similarly, it is much easier to shorten a wedding dress but it is almost impossible to extend a wedding dress to fit your height without noticing the alterations. Planning to crash-diet to fit into your wedding gown might not be the ideal solution as you might never reach your goal and end up being stuck with an ill-fitting wedding dress.
• What is the condition of the wedding dress?
Many brides dry clean and preserve the wedding dress in preservation packages, where the gown is cleaned and packed into the box so that it will not be a feast for the insects and to prevent discoloring in the future. If you find your wedding gown that has undergone this treatment, then there is a fair chance that it will look much like it did when it was first worn. But if some former brides in the family did not store the wedding gown properly then it may be stained, torn, or discolored and no amount of cleaning will give you a wedding gown that meets your approval.
• Will it flatter your shape?
Every girl dreams of wearing a wedding gown that will fit her like a glove. And if your hand been down wedding gown has bones to it, there is a chance that a talented or artistic seamstress can turn it into a wedding gown that will enhance your body type and shape. But if the heirloom wedding gown is of a style that you do not like- a princess cut or a mermaid style, then transforming it into something workable might cost you a fortune.
• Are you settling for less?
Every bride wants to feel her best in her wedding gown. If your hand-me-down gown doesn't fit the visions of your dream wedding gown and doesn't make you feel like a timelessly romantic bride when you put it on then you are simply settling because for the sake of it and it may put a damper on your entire wedding.
If you are planning your wedding on a budget, buying a preloved wedding gown or hand me down bridal dress can be a great way to save your precious fund and use it for something that holds more value to you. Vintage bridal gowns with heavy embellishments might not be one of your best choices for a wedding dress, but you can always pair them with vintage wedding accents or simple wedding jewelry for a sophisticated and subtle bridal look. Buying pre-owned wedding gowns is a new way of bridal shopping and many bridal wardrobe brands are coming up with wedding dress selections that are eco-friendly, which lets you find the perfect bridal wardrobe while feeling responsible for a clean planet. One such eco-friendly bridal brand, Borrowing Magnolia is the home of thousands of preloved bridal wear selections so that a bride can buy her wedding dress with sustainability and eco-friendliness in mind. This is one of the most loved second-hand wedding shops for finding more affordable wedding dresses and scoring designer wedding dresses at half or even lesser prices.
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