Wedding Dress Preservation Gift

Disclosure: Bear in mind that some of the links in this post are affiliate links and if you go through them to make a purchase I will earn a commission. Keep in mind that I link these companies and their products because of their quality and not because of the commission I receive from your purchases. The decision is yours, and whether or not you decide to buy something is completely up to you.

As most of us are short of cash due to this COVID nonsense, every time I would wistfully express my dream of getting my wedding dress preserved I was met with a staunch “no” from my husband and my finances.

Most of the bridal industry is aware of the state of the world, such as David’s Bridal, whose prices have slashed to $119 for their gown preservation, but that still wasn’t low enough.

This weekend my husband and I finally got around to writing our thank-you notes. We finished in one go, and in the process found a $100 Visa gift card. I figured we would save it for grocery shopping.

At the end of writing our thank-you notes, my husband turned to me and said, “M.B., I think you should use this on that thing you want. The thing that’s wedding related.”

I literally did not know what it was in that moment, so I said, “I don’t want to guess, sweetie,” More books?

“Come on, you know what it is. You’ve been asking for it for months.”

“I don’t want to be presumptuous. Jus tell me hon.”

At this point he smiled huge and said, “You can use this to preserve your wedding dress!”

Well, my goodness, finally!

At first I did try to go to David’s bridal, thinking I could use two forms of payment, but to no avail. Then… I had an idea.

Go to Amazon.

I had seen wedding dress preservation kits there before while googling for them.

I saw one for $101… another for $101…

Finally one for $75.95 with decent ratings and an instructional video link on YouTube.

This is not a product review, but I ended up purchasing the Foster-Stephens, inc White Heirloom Wedding Gown Storage and Preservation Box, and I am ecstatic. I called my mom and sister about it. I told my old roommate about it.

I will have a product review of the kit when it comes in on Sunday.

FYI: My husband had written me a calligraphy note, and did you know he’s designing me my dream garden in Autocad?

Sometimes, people think of you in the strangest of times. I guess that’s part of marriage.

How to Shop For a Wedding Dress When You Have a Chronic Illness

This jersey knit sheath from David’s bridal for $199 is extremely comfortable.

When it comes to planning your Spoonie wedding, it’s all about the dress. If you suffer from chronic pain from a chronic illness, the dress will be a big factor in how your wedding day will go. This is because it dictates your comfort level. There are easy ways to figure this out without wasting spoons trying on tons of dresses, which will drain your energy.

Tips for figuring out which dresses to try on

1. Consider a non bridal dress that happens to be white.

These will have less layers and will be less heavy, and also less expensive. I try to be budget friendly on this blog because I know with medical expenses everything else can get in the way. Prioritize your health.

2. Look for a dress with only two or three layers.

Wedding dresses are like cakes. Some have more fabric layers than most. Some have up to 12, and this makes the dress heavy. The heavier the dress, the more uncomfortable you will feel as it places pressure on your body, causing pain and exhaustion.

3. Consider the fabric. The softer and lighter it is, the better.

Jersey knit, lace and satin are favorites. Make sure you bring a flash light to test if the fabric is see through!

4. If your weight fluctuates, consider a corset top.

The dress I landed on was a soft lace up all the way with a ribbon. That meant that no matter how my body changed, the dress could be altered through tightening or loosening the corset lacing.

I originally bought the first dress pictured, and it was zip up all the way which ended up hurting me in the end.

Where should you buy a dress?

My dress was not bought at a traditional bridal shop, so I suggest getting creative with your search. Personal favorites are:

1. Secondhand bridal shops

This way, you can buy couture for less, and get it off the rack the same day.

2. Quinceanera shops

This is where I found my dress. You can find excellent customer service and a different style of dress if you don’t like current bridal fashion, like I do.

3. Department stores

These are good places to find dresses with less layers. The dresses will be simpler and more low key, and a simpler dress is usually a more comfortable dress.

Good department stores are:

– Nordstrom

– Macy’s

I had a bad experience at David’s Bridal with my body fluctuations. I do not recommend them.

How to shop

1. Do NOT shop online.

2. Only go to one store per day.

3. When you dress shop, make it your one goal for the day.

Shapewear

Try to wear as little shapewear and other undergarments as possible. This means no complicated slips or spandex. You’re going to need to pee at some point. These items are also restrictive and uncomfortable. I did wear a soft, expensive strapless bra and soft spandex shorts on my wedding day. I made sure my undergarments were soft and necessary. If it’s your wedding day and you think you look good without your spandex, skip it. I was still comfortable in mine because of the type I wore.

My Dress

My dress was satin and silk. It didn’t have structured hard boning in the corset. This meant the corset was soft, which was good for my costocondritis. The dress had an empire waist, so there was no pressure on my abdomen, which is a constant painful spot for me. It had crystal sparkle detail on the bodice, and a simple three layer skirt. It was not heavy at all and twirled!

You can still have a princess dress and comfort. Just know what to look for, and don’t give up on the dress of your dreams!

My photographer had me take bridal portraits sitting down to save spoons.