Donate Wedding Dresses

Whether you’ve never worn your wedding gown, are planning to get married again or are just a little bit too old for it now, donating your dress can make someone else’s day. Plus, it will declutter your closet and give you a tax deduction.

When you donate your wedding dress, you can be sure it’ll find a good home. The charity shops that accept them can’t possibly go through all the dresses, so they’re usually very selective. Most of them will only take your dress if it’s still in good condition and not too outdated, so sorry ‘80s brides!

Some charities use your wedding dress as part of a bigger project, such as creating bereavement gowns for newborns who pass away at an early age. This project is a great way to recycle your wedding dress and bring some comfort to families who have lost a child.

Others repurpose your wedding dress to create something new, such as a veil, cape or even a handbag. You could also use your wedding dress to frame a photograph or hang it on a mannequin to keep as a memento of your special day.

Alternatively, some charities will sell your wedding dress so you can get a little extra cash for it. It’s important to research the companies and charities that sell used wedding dresses before you buy, as some will charge high prices for your gown. It’s also important to clean your wedding dress before selling it to ensure it’s in a decent condition and free of stains.

One bridal boutique with a heart that accepts wedding dress donations is Cherie Amour in Maryland. The organization takes gowns up to five years old and donates them to other nonprofits. They’ve donated over 300 dresses since 2013. Another option for those interested in donating their wedding dress is Brides Across America. This nonprofit outfits military and first responder brides with the wedding dress of their dreams. They’ve given away over 2,000 dresses since 2008, and they’re accepting gowns through their Operation Wedding Gown event this fall.

If you don’t want to donate your wedding dress, but it’s not quite time to say goodbye, it can be kept in a safe storage space. But it’s best to wash your gown before storing it so that the fabric doesn’t deteriorate. This is especially important during the COVID-19 pandemic, when some fabrics and items can develop mold if not cleaned in advance.

The more you keep your wedding gown, the more it will lose value over time, so donating your dress can be the best way to get rid of it. If you decide to store it, be sure it’s in an acid-free box or plastic wrap to keep it safe from damage. You can also put it in a dress bag for additional protection.