By Mercy Geno Apachi
From the moment an engagement ring is slid onto a lady’s delicate finger, the fantasies of that Cinderella-like wedding gown beautifully swish-swashing to the one-two step rhythm of the aisle instrumentals begins to warm her heart.
However the question that has often lingered on many people’s minds is, “What happens to the wedding gown after the one-time occasion is done?”
Claire Muhindo Kihembo, who got married last year says the idea of spending about Shs4million on a gown meant to be worn for only about five hours of a day and never re-used was unappealing.
“I instead opted to hire one at Shs 1.5 million which was cheaper. Besides the day would come and go,” she explains.
Claire returned the dress to where it was hired from and it was re-displayed to make another bride’s day beautiful.
To some, the dress is an heirloom of love handed down from family members, intangibly emblazoned with strings of affection therefore making it hard to be departed with.
“Mine was a gift from my in-law and I still have it close to 10 years now because it marked the start of our bond,’” narrates Tusiime owa Ssebuggwawo a business lady in Kampala.
Peace Nami a resident of Kansanga developed sentimental attachments towards her dress after having to go through an entire hectic process of having a friend tailor it for her.
“I had to get the idea of how I wanted it to look as well as often be ready to fit, agree or disagree with the tailor and in the end everything totaled up to Shs 1.1 million which is cheaper than buying.”
Nami still often picks the dress out of the closet to simply look at it and reminisce the one day she officially said I do to her life partner.
Like many, she still patiently waits for the time when her daughter will fit in it or when any of her friends decide to borrow it for their own big days.
Whereas many have similar stories, Mary Caroline from Watoto Church Ntinda, differs from the above.
Mary would rather be the only one to put on her wedding dress. She strongly disagrees with the notion of handing it down to daughters and friends.
“Imagine people starting to compare who wore your wedding dress better? Also styles change. I’m sure by the time my daughter weds, my kind of fashion could be outdated,” says Mary.
She further explains that it would be ridiculous to wear the gown to another function because one would be over dressed and irrelevant.
“My dress is tucked away in a suitcase not even dry-cleaned. This laziness is for world cup. I’m afraid of national humiliation,” Mary laughs.
Five other things to do with the gown after the wedding.
The good news is, there are very many creative ways to use your gown after the wedding;
- You can dry clean it, store it and retrieve it at anniversary celebrations. This rekindles the love and makes it feel new.
- One can sell it at a cheaper price to any bridal shops, online and to friends. This can aid on your current financial situation or help you retrieve some of the money spent in tailoring or buying.
- Do you have little daughters or nieces? Take the dress back to the seamstress and make mini-dresses commonly known as tantantala for them. These could make for birthday and other presents.
- Just like when you were leaving high school, let your important friends and family sign inspiring messages for your marriage life, frame it and place it in a room where you can often go back and read through.
- Donate it to any organisations that are willing to take it. You never know who else it may help.