The Story of a Legacy of Love
BY LORRAINE STEWART
Many women are tasked with going through their own parent’s life of accumulated belongings in preparation for a change. The reason may be downsizing, prep for the sale of the home, or sadly, after a loved one’s passing. It is at best, a labor of love.
The process of choosing the items to keep, store, or give away is emotional. It triggers memories of childhood, family, and days gone by. As I tackle this myself, the values of my WWII generation parents become more apparent. Tucked into every possible nook and cranny of their home are hundreds of papers and photographs, decades of older clothing, books, and items cherished for no obvious reason. My mother kept a kitchen drawer full of carefully folded pieces of tin foil, “lest she needs it someday”.
“On one such day, to our delight and surprise, we discover large boxes of family wedding dresses, stored up high on shelves in a closet.”
My daughter Grace often comes with me to help me sort through Grandma’s things. She has a special love for family heirlooms that inspire our conversations and provide a peek into the past. On one such day, to our delight and surprise, we discover large boxes of family wedding dresses, stored up high on shelves in a closet. Dusty, sealed yet still safeguarding the wedding gowns within them. Dresses perhaps a bit forgotten by the brides who wore them.
Curiosity overcomes us.
We open the big boxes. We sort through a sea of tissue and packing material. We begin to unfold yards of voluminous satin, tulle, and lace. We gingerly finger the lace appliques, pearl embellishments, and covered buttons. We admire the design details that make each special. We laugh out loud at the pillbox cap that was part of my own wedding attire. We see the style changes over the decades, from the old Hollywood, off the shoulder bodice popular in the 1940s, to the Lady Diana-style of puffy sleeves, circa 1980s.
Grandma would surely tell us there is something very beautiful to be made from these dress fabrics. After all, it’s not tin foil, and no wedding dress belongs in a landfill.
On that day the idea for our mother-daughter legacy business was born.
What better way to honor the family love across generations than to “unbox the dress” and reclaim the best of its beauty in a newly fashioned way. What better way to share a legacy of love than by celebrating the amazing women who wore these dresses on a day when they felt most special.
“On that day the idea for our mother-daughter legacy of love business was born.”
Founded in 2016, Unbox the Dress® has grown to become a highly regarded and trusted national wedding dress redesign company. It offers services that enable women of all generations to care for, store, and plan to transform their family or their own wedding dress into many new heirlooms and gifts for loved ones.
Unbox the Dress® features a fun, user-friendly quiz to help women know how many items can be made from their dress, and then provides visitors a choice of over more than 30 different products to order. Friendly customer service reps called Design Consultants also answer questions and help women make the best decisions in product selection.
Grandparents love to create christening gowns or create a collection of legacy angels all made from their own wedding dress to gift to their loved ones.
Unbox the Dress® provides the highest quality dress redesign service available because of the talented, professional, and inspiring women who work there. We call them the Graceful Sewers™. These expert designers transform older wedding gowns to gifts in ways that are breath-taking and bring customers from coast to coast a sense of true joy.
Grandma Shirley always loved Grace. If she was still with us today, she would not only love the idea of Unbox the Dress but especially the honor and respect that is fashioned into every beautiful item created for the women we serve. I know I certainly am.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR – LORRAINE STEWART
Lorraine Stewart is a respected marketing professional, business owner, and mother to four. With the recent arrival of Oliver Luke this past May, she has recently been “promoted to Grandma!”