Reflecting on your wedding day can bring up many happy memories. So, why not surround yourself with those feel-good moments by turning your wedding dress into something special that you'll see each day in your home? Get creative and try one of these upcycled or recycled wedding dress crafts. You'll get that gown out of the back of your closet and turn it into a new memento that you and your spouse can enjoy.
1. Make a Baby Outfit
Are you expecting a little one soon? Channel your inner seamstress to craft a coming-home-from-the-hospital ensemble from your wedding dress. Or, make a special baby outfit for the infant's baby shower, christening, first birthday, or another special occasion.
2. Sew a Table Runner
If the dress has a long lace train or decorative elements on the skirting, consider trimming it into a long, slender piece of fabric to adorn your table setting. Some simple stitching around the edges is all it takes to upcycle a section of the dress into the centerpiece for your next tablescape.
3. Assemble Pillow Covers
Freshen your bedroom by stitching throw pillow covers to use on the accent pillows on your bed. Each time you lie down to rest or go to sleep, you'll be reminded of your special day and close your eyes with a smile on your face.
4. Create a New Dress
Do you have an anniversary coming up? Why not give that favorite dress a makeover and wear it again! Hem it shorter. Dye it your favorite color. Add a sweater or jacket to change up the neckline a bit, and you've got a great little party dress to wear for a special date night.
5. Craft a Teddy Bear
Every time you see your little one hugging and kissing the stuffed teddy bear made from your wedding dress, you'll be reminded of the loving foundation on which your family was founded. No children? You could make teddy bears to give to close relatives, such as nieces and nephews, or donate your creation to a local women and children's shelter.
6. Make a Memory Blanket
Contact your bridesmaids and groomsmen and ask if they also have wedding wear tucked in the back of their closets. If you can round up one of the bridesmaid's dresses and a tie or two from the men, you can collage pieces of those fabrics with the wedding dress to create an upcycled quilt filled with wedding day colors and memories.
7. Cover Your Wedding Photo Albums
Do you have your wedding day pictures displayed in a few albums? Why not upgrade the folios by covering them with the fabrics from your wedding dress? Special buttons can line the spine of the album. Lace can cover the front. Each time you browse the photos, you'll also be cradling your dress in your hands.
No Creative Skills? No Problem!
If you're short on time or have two left thumbs when it comes to crafting, you can hire someone with creative skills to turn your favorite dress into something you can cherish. Recycled wedding dresses are big business for professional creatives, such as seamstresses or crafters.
Reach out to your circle of friends for recommendations, or do an internet search for the craft you love most and your city. For example, type "wedding memory quilt, Los Angeles" in a browser search box, and you'll get lists of people who would be happy to give your dress a new purpose that fits into your sustainable-minded lifestyle.
Or, consider donating your dress to a cause with a mission you support. A few to consider include the NICU Helping Hands' Angel Gown® Program, Brides Across America, or St. Mary's Brides For Haiti Under the Patronage of St. Philomena.
Bottom line: keep your dress away from the local landfill. The United States Environmental Protection Agency documented 11.3 million tons of municipal waste textiles deposited into landfills in 2018. Don't let your wedding dress add to the pile.
Upcycled and recycled wedding dress crafts are gaining popularity as brides and grooms plan green weddings to align with their eco-friendly lifestyles. So, start dreaming up ways you can enjoy that satin and lace once again. Or, pass it on to someone who can make good use of the fabric through upcycling.
For more DIY projects, visit the DIY Naturally board from @tomsofmaine on Pinterest!
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Why It's Good
Keep the good vibes alive. Recycling your wedding dress into a special memento you can enjoy daily (rather than making an annual visit to the dress bag tucked at the back of your closet) is sure to bring a smile to your face and help unclutter your space. Win-win!