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After the Wedding: Keep the Dress or Sell It?

What did you do with your dress after your wedding? Or, for those of you who are about to be married, what do you plan to do with it?

Since I was pretty sure even back when I got married that I didn’t want to have kids, I didn’t really see a point in keeping my wedding dress. I didn’t foresee I’d have a daughter to pass it down to, so why keep it?

But I ended up keeping it anyway. Mostly at Wayne’s insistence of all things.

When we moved from Phoenix to Jacksonville we held a garage sale. I pulled my wedding dress out of the closet and put it in the “to sell” heap. Wayne promptly plucked it out.

“You can’t sell your wedding dress.”

“Why not?”

“Because you got married in it. It’s special.”

“But I’m never going to wear it again. It’s just taking up space. Why not see if we can get a few bucks for it?”

“I guess we could try, but I think we better keep it. It’s part of our history.”

I was touched that he was so upset at the prospect of me selling the dress that I decided not to.

But you know, I also never got it cleaned and preserved. I just put it back in the bag it came in when I bought it and that’s how it’s been stored all these years.

Then the other day I realized now I could never sell the dress even if I wanted to. It’s ruined.

During our reception, I was goofing off with my bridesmaid Tracie for pictures. I lifted a champagne bottle, which happened to be open, and put my thumb over the opening before I held it to my lips. I was going for a funny picture of me chugging straight from the bottle.

Joke was on me. I quickly realized why champagne’s nicknamed “bubbly.” No sooner had I tipped it up then the carbonation exploded all over me.

Well, leave a dress with spilt champagne on it for 13 years and it develops into a nice brown stain. Several of them to be exact. Maybe if I’d had it cleaned right after the wedding it wouldn’t have, but I never got around to it, so….

In another article Heather brought up an excellent point: know what you’ll do with your dress before you buy it.

If you plan on keeping it and have your eye on a pricier dress, it’s easier to justify spending a bit more.

Same goes for if you plan to resell it. If it’s a dress by a hot designer, chances are you’ll be able to recoup a little bit of your costs.

Whichever route you go, just make sure to get it cleaned right after the ceremony. (And if you’re going to resell, figure in the cost of cleaning to your resale budget. Cleaning costs aren’t cheap.)

But you know I kind of think Jade has the right idea with getting an outfit you can wear again. I wasn’t kidding when I commented back to her that if I had to do it all over again, I’d get a cool swimming suit and get married in it on the beach.

Bonus, if I spilled champagne on it, I could just wash it right off in the ocean!

Courtney Mroch writes about animals great and small in Pets and the harmony and strife that encompasses married life in Marriage. For a full listing of her articles click here.