Belfast Telegraph

Brides urged to donate wedding dresses for show

By Donna Deeney

Brides are being asked to donate their precious wedding dresses for an exhibition.

From next March, Wedding Belles in Limavady will feature a selection of bridal dresses and accessories from the 1940 through to the 90s belonging to local brides.

Items collected so far include dresses from across the decades, both handmade and designer as well as smaller items such as photographs, invitations, veils, acceptance cards and telegrams.

Victoria Newberry, from the town's Art and Culture Centre said: “We’ve had a fantastic response so far, particularly from brides who got married in the 1970s as well as the last 10 years.

“We are still looking for more dresses and accessories. If people have any items that they think would be of interest, either belonging to themselves or their mothers, grandmothers or other relatives, I urge them to get in touch.”

Elizabeth Scott celebrated her 36th wedding anniversary earlier this week and the dress she wore is included in the exhibition.

Elizabeth got married a few days before her 19th birthday and the young bride carefully packed her dress away in it's original box.

She said: “Looking back it doesn't seem like 36 years since I got married, the years just seem to flip and like all brides I have clear memories of my wedding.

“Things were very different then and I remember the day I bought my dress, I went to Coleraine with my mother and my sister.

“We went into one shop, I tried on one dress and that was it. I put the dress away when I came back from honeymoon and haven't seen it too much since. When my two daughters were getting married they asked to see it. We brought it down from the attic but there wasn't really a question of either of them wearing it.

“My youngest daughter mentioned the exhibition to me and asked if I would consider donating my dress but I am nervous about people seeing it after all these years. Even the box I stored it in is the original and it is my maiden name that's on the box so that was strange to see.

“I am so looking forward to seeing the exhibition when it opens.”

Participants will have the opportunity to upload photos and memories of their big day onto the Northern Ireland Community Archive website (www.ni archive.org).

This will provide a reminder of the history of weddings in the area when the exhibition ends.

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