Donate Wedding Dresses

donate wedding dresses

If you’re the bride who doesn’t plan to wear your gown again, instead of putting it in storage or throwing it away, consider giving it to someone else. After all, wedding dresses can be very expensive and not everyone has the funds to afford one. Donating your dress to a worthy cause may help someone else make their dream come true.

Puccio says the library has received a number of wedding dress donations in recent months, as more brides are unable to afford their own gowns. Finding new homes for the dresses makes her feel good. “It’s kind of like a little bit of magic,” she said.

There are many charities and thrift stores that accept used wedding gowns. Many of them offer donation pickup and drop off services or will mail the dress to you, if necessary. Before you donate, be sure to research the organizations to find out their guidelines for preparing and delivering your dress. Often, these will include instructions for having the dress professionally cleaned. Also, be sure to write down any important information about the dress in case you have questions for a charity volunteer when delivering it to them, such as the size, the brand or designer and the year it was purchased. This will save the volunteers’ time and ensure your dress is matched with the right bride.

Some of these organizations use the proceeds from the sale of the donated dresses for breast cancer research, early detection programs and other causes. Others, like Brides Across America, pass on the gowns for free to military and first responder brides at Operation Wedding Gown events twice a year. To date, the charity has gifted more than 26,000 dresses. To learn more about the process of donating your dress, visit their online form.

Other organizations, like Newborn Hope, transform the gowns into infant burial gowns, bonnets and baptismal outfits to be given to families who lose a baby during pregnancy or after birth. Donated wedding dresses are tenderly dismantled and refashioned at the Monument home of professional seamstress Irene Sutherland. The gowns are then offered to hospitals, birthing centers and funeral homes at no cost to grieving parents.

Aside from donating to a meaningful cause, your gown may be eligible for an itemized tax deduction if it’s donated to a qualified charity. Depending on the amount of money that you give, this could make your donation more worthwhile than simply donating to a local thrift store.

Another benefit of donating your dress is that it’s a great way to stay environmentally responsible. According to GreenDrop, the production of new clothing and textiles uses hundreds of gallons of water and contributes to harmful carbon emissions. By donating your dress, you’ll be helping to reduce these effects. In addition, you’ll free up some space in your closet and have less clutter to clean!