Ask the Experts: What Do I Do with My Dress After the Wedding?

Soirée is lucky to work with some of the best in the wedding industry, and today’s guest blogger is one of our favorites. Jessica Attere is the owner of dress shop Brides by Jessa offering exclusive gown designers as well as great service through their one-on-one appointments. Additionally, she offers Premier Appointments which are held after normal business hours for the Bride and up to 10 of her closest friends and family. The store will play the Bride’s choice of music and serve food and drinks chosen by the Bride for the ultimate wedding gown shopping experience.


Jessica has perfected the process to make shopping for a wedding gown easy, memorable, and a great experience. As a result, there are hundreds of happy “Jessa Brides”. Today, she answers a question that many brides ask: “What do I do with this dress after the wedding is over?”


Clean and Preserve Your Dress

Historically, the most popular option for what to do with your wedding dress after your big day has always been to have it professionally cleaned and boxed in a cute little box that you can open up every once in awhile and still see through the plastic. We offer this service through the Wedding Gown Preservation Company and it includes a 100 year guarantee on the preservation of the dress.


Clean and Display Your Dress

Another really cool option that I have seen floating around Pinterest lately is having your dress cleaned and then getting a large shadow box to display it in your walk in closet. I love this idea, and I may actually remove mine from the box it is currently in and hang it up if my husband and I ever build our own house with a space like this.


Donate Your Dress

If you aren’t the kind of person to hang on to something that you may never use again then a very wonderful option would be to donate your dress. You could donate to Goodwill or the Salvation Army or if you are looking for something really meaningful, there are some local and national organizations that will take your used wedding dress and make “Angel Gowns” for babies that are born sleeping. Here is the contact information if this is something you would be interested in:
St. Lukes Cedar Rapids
Deb Oldakowski at (319) 369-7580. 


Sell Your Dress

Dresses can always sold after your big day as well. There are local resale shops that will take them after they have been cleaned and if they are still in good condition. If you are going to choose this option, I would do so soon after your wedding. The trends change so quickly and even though in 2 or 3 years you may still love your dress, odds are that it isn’t in style anymore. I was married 7 years ago and while I still LOVE my dress because it was perfect at the time, I don’t have anything like it in my store now.


Keep for a Daughter to Play Dress-Up

A fun option that I have also considered is keeping my dress for a future daughter to play dress up in or have photographs taken in when she’s little.


Keep for a Daughter to Wear

Though this is always well-intentioned, let’s face it, like I mentioned above, trends change. If in 25ish years your daughter really wants to wear your dress, you would be the exception and not the rule. Every time I hear someone saying this, I think back to that scene in 27 Dresses where Tess puts in like 2 inches worth of lace from her Mom’s dress in her dress and Jane loses her mind. Case in point – here’s a picture of my beautiful Momma in her wedding dress in 1988. She was a LOVELY bride, but I haven’t seen anyone in a dress like that since…well…1988. 😉


Your dress is huge part in the happiest day of your life and I hope that whatever you choose to do with it after your wedding makes you just as happy as you were when you were wearing it! 

~ Guest blog post written by Jessica Attere, owner of Brides by Jessa


Brides By Jessa offers customers a one-on-one appointment based bridal shopping experience. In addition to bridal gowns, Brides by Jessa features a large selection of accessories and other dresses. Customers seeking unique designers won’t be disappointed in the selection at Brides by Jessa; the shop features designers and styles that aren’t readily available at most local boutiques. Make your appointment to shop for your dream dress today by visiting her website: