The 120-year-old heirloom has been passed down for generations.
Some brides make a face about wearing their mother’s vintage wedding dress down the aisle. But that’s not the case for Abigail Kingston, who is about to wear a dress that’s been worn by 10 of her relatives — and that’s 120 years old, The Associated Press reports.
Mary Lowry Warren, Kingston’s great-great-grandmother, first wore the dress on December 11, 1895. And the dress was last worn in 1991. After each wearing, the delicate garment is kept by the mother of the last bride who wore it. Throughout the years, it has only been dry cleaned once, and it’s been patched up with lace and altered to each bride’s individual tastes.
Kingston, who lives in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, plans to wear her own dress for her October 17 ceremony, and then change into the family heirloom for the cocktail hour. And not because she doesn’t like it — it’s actually very fragile after 120 years of wear and tear.
When a relative shipped it to her, it was in rough shape. It had holes everywhere, the satin was a brownish hue, and the sleeves were falling apart. So she took it to a designer to get it restored, and 200 hours of painstaking work later, it was finally wearable.
Kingston will wear a locket her grandfather gave her grandmother, and will display photos of every bride who has ever worn the dress during her wedding reception. “It’s not just the dress that’s been handed down,” Leslie Kingston, Abigail’s mom, said. “It’s the love.” So much so that there’s already another bride who wants to wear it next.
Author: Megan Friedman