Sunday, January 25, 2009

The Wedding Dress Is Back

This is my mom on my folk's wedding day on December 3, 1955. Look how cute she is. She was 25 when she and my dad were married. After the wedding, my mom put her dress into it's original Dayton's box where it stayed on a shelf in her closet. I remember seeing it once over the years when she was still around. Judging from the layer of dust on the box, I don't think it had seen the light of day for many, many years.
When we were cleaning out my parent's house this past summer, it appeared that none of my other siblings wanted the dress. So, being the secretly sentimental fool that I am, I put it on my list of things that I wanted from the estate. The dress was in pretty rough shape. The netting felt extremely brittle. The whole dress was stained yellow and brown from years spent in a non-acid free box and wrapped in blue tissue paper. The sequins were tarnished. The lace seemed very fragile.
So, I did some research and found a wedding gown restoration place nearby and took it in back in November. I think I wrote about crying all the way there and all the way back. What a mess. Anyway, just about two months later I get the call that it is ready. I had no idea what to expect, if any of it could even be salvaged. But, I picked it up yesterday and here it is. They did an AMAZING job. It is completely free of any discoloration. The netting and lace that I thought would dissolve are in wearable condition.
So, now the dress goes back into it's fresh acid free box with a 100 year guarantee against any discoloration. I have no idea what to do with it other than hold on to it for sentimental reasons. I probably spent more getting the dress restored than what my mom originally paid for it. I wonder if my folks are shaking their heads, thinking I should have spent my money more wisely or if they get it and appreciate the gesture. Probably a bit of both. I miss them.


Mnmom said...

That's lovely. But what ARE you going to do with it? I still don't know what to do with mine - I'm hoping one of the girls will take it apart and fashion it into a future wedding dress.
I'm sure you miss them - with each passing season we miss them don't we?

janban said...

It looks beautiful! As beautiful as the day she wore it, I'm sure. I am so thankful for the care and thought you put into finding just the right person to restore the dress. thank you.

Amy said...

I love that you did this. Today it has been 11 years since my dad passed. I miss him terribly. I have a ring he got from Deco Products for some work anniversary and I take it out and put it on and think of him. It is gold and has a diamond in it. I keep wanting to take it to a jeweler to have it made into something I could wear but then I get sentimental and can't do it.

Madame Leiderhosen said...

I love the photo of your mom, particularly her smile and her glasses.

Well done with having a precious thing restored. There is something very intimate about someone's clothing. I have a few things in tiny suitcase that comes out to smell and embrace; I feel ridiculous but if the house burns down they'll be the second thing I'll grab.
Can you share the name of the restorer? It's always good to know someone who does excellent specialized work.

michaelg said...

I wish the name was more creative but it is Wedding Gown Care Specialists in New Hope. If you bring your dress here, you can stay with us for free.

Dale said...

Great photo of your Mom there. I remember my mother eventually making decorative pillow covers out of her wedding dress.