If you’ve recently divorced or just have an extra dress taking up space in your closet, don’t just toss it — donate it. Several organizations are accepting wedding dresses for charity and will give them new life. But you need to be picky when choosing a place to donate your dress. Many of these dress donation charities support a specific cause, so make sure you know what kind of work they do before handing over your gown.
For example, NICU Helping Hands Angel Gowns, which provides memorial attire to families of babies who died before birth or shortly thereafter, accepts donations of used wedding and bridesmaid dresses that seamstresses then remake into burial gowns. The organization also creates infant memorial clothing including cloth nappies, baby blankets, and hats. You can find a donation location near you here.
Another charity that makes a difference is Gift of a Wedding, which helps terminally ill couples celebrate their last days together with family and friends. Founder Patricia discovered that couples in this difficult situation are in need of more than just financial assistance. That’s why she started the nonprofit to provide brides-to-be with their dream wedding at no cost.
Those looking to donate their dresses can get in touch with the organization via its website, where they can fill out an online form that includes the details of their dress. The charity then carefully reviews the information before accepting it for use.
In some cases, donors can receive tax deductions for their wedding dresses. This is because donating a wedding dress can be considered a charitable contribution, and tax rules vary by state and locality. But you should consult with your tax professional before claiming a donated wedding dress on your taxes.
One thing to remember when donating your gown is that the organizations that take wedding dresses for charity often require that they’re in good condition. Check for tears or other damage and make sure that the gown has been dry cleaned before sending it off to its new home.
Some of these charities will sell the dress and bridal accessories at affordable prices to women who can’t afford new wedding dresses. The funds will then be used by the charity to help with a particular cause, such as breast cancer.
Several other charity wedding dress donation programs focus on a specific cause, such as helping military wives or people who can’t afford to buy a gown. You can contact these charities to see if they are accepting dresses for their cause, as well as the deadline for doing so.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, most Salvation Army thrift stores have been accepting wedding dresses for donation. They will need to be dry cleaned before donating them, and you should call ahead or schedule a pickup appointment on the charity’s website to ensure that they’re still open. This organization has locations in Washington and Oregon, but also operates an online store. Its dress shop sells dresses and bridal accessories under 10 years old, so you should be able to find a home for your gown here.