Not every bride dreams of donning a new wedding dress – some dream of wearing something vintage and sentimental. These brides both chose to wear their mothers’ gowns on their wedding days. Here are there experiences of wearing family heirloom gowns.
Bride: Mary Claire Burns married on May 19, 2017
Mother of the Bride: Michele Simoneaux married on June 1, 1985
Describe the dress:
Ivory, A-line silhouette, off the shoulder ruffled neckline, lace bodice and trim
Do you have memories of looking at your mother’s wedding pictures as a child?
Yes, we would often look at my parents’ wedding album and the portrait hanging in my grandmother’s house.
What made you decide to wear her dress?
I competed in pageants when I was younger, so I had high expectations for my wedding gown. I did go to several dress shops and tried on many wedding dresses, but none of them compared to my mom’s. Not only was it classic and beautiful, I couldn’t pass up the sentimental value.
What was your mom’s reaction when you told her you wanted to wear her dress?
We’ve always talked about the possibility of me wearing it. My two sisters are taller than my mother and I, so it would have been too short for them. Her (and my Papa) were ecstatic. She still tells people about it two years later!
Did you make any alterations to the dress?
Once we got it out of storage, we had it professionally cleaned and it looked brand new! I added one button for a bustle and took the bodice in slightly.
What was your favorite part of the dress?
The beautiful cathedral veil with lace trim. They don’t make them like that anymore!
What was everyone’s reaction to seeing you in your mother’s dress?
It was hard for people to believe that it was still “in style” - Not many people could say that about their mother’s wedding dress from the 80s! I received (and continue to receive) countless compliments. It was a pleasant surprise to most people that I didn’t have a new, modern dress.
Do you hope the dress will continue to be carried on?
Absolutely! I would love for my own daughters or nieces to wear it one day!