Threads: Dream Wedding Gowns that Fight Breast Cancer

Apr 14, 2013 by

Threads: Dream Wedding Gowns that Fight Breast Cancer

by Heather Cassell

Getting hitched? Feel a little extra special on your wedding day walking down the aisle in a gown that not only saved a bit of green for your honeymoon, but also helped save another woman’s life.

What? Is that possible? Yes it is with Brides Against Breast Cancer, the breast cancer organization makes it easy to say, “Yes,” to the dress of women’s wedding dreams.

More than 70 percent of the proceeds from sale of the designer wedding gowns go toward directly supporting services providing education, hope and support for those impacted by cancer, says Amy Paulishak, vice president, business development of Brides Against Breast Cancer. An average of 27 gowns is sold at each show, according to BABC’s website.

The 14-year-old organization raises nearly $1 million a year to support breast cancer services, according to its website.

More than 50,000 wedding gown donations, with an estimated resale value of more than $4 million have been collected and sorted for the Nationwide Tour of Gowns this year.

The BABC will host more than 100 shows around the U.S. showcasing more than 1,000 new or gently worn designer dresses to new couture and exclusive gowns in 2013. Gowns by well-known designer gowns valued up to $8,000 and even couture and exclusive gowns by Vera Wang and Carolina Herrera valued up to $20,000 are available at 25 to 75 percent savings.

Brides Against Breast Cancer (Photo: Courtesy of Brides Against Breast Cancer)

Brides Against Breast Cancer (Photo: Courtesy of Brides Against Breast Cancer)

“Exclusive designer and couture gowns are frequently available at great savings in our shows and locally as well,” says Amy, noting that a large number of the gowns presented at each event are brand new designer gowns donated by designers, manufacturers and bridal retailers.

Many of the gowns can be purchased for as low as $75 to $799.

The gowns are donated from around the world by designers, manufacturers, bridal shops and women who donate their gowns – one of their most treasured possessions – to support the organization’s Original Nationwide Tour of Gowns sales.

“Our organization makes it possible for future brides around the country to purchase wedding gowns at dramatic savings, and give back,” says Amy. “We also offer layaway.”

A seamstress is available on site for consultation.

“I tried on a dress and when I turned and looked in the mirror I could not help but to shed a tear. It was “the one” and what made it more special is that my thoughts were on my dear friend,” says Jacqueline Marshbanks, from Chicago, Ill., a customer about her experience as BABC staff and volunteers helped her pick out her dress.

At the time leading up to her wedding day her co-worker and friend, Andrea, was diagnosed with breast cancer. Andrea lost her battle before Jacqueline’s wedding day.

Jacqueline plans to donate the dress back to BABC, she writes on the organization’s website.

“This dress is special,” she writes.

Admission to the shows is free, although a VIP admission ($20.00) gives attendees a sneak peak at the gowns and an ability to buy first during a “Power Hour.”

A Bakersfield, Calif., bride-to-be considers her options. (Photo: Courtesy of Brides Against Breast Cancer)

A Bakersfield, Calif., bride-to-be considers her options. (Photo: Courtesy of Brides Against Breast Cancer)

The tour kicked-off in Cleveland, Oh. in January and has made its way up and down the East Coast, traveled down south, made its way to the West Coast so far. The tour’s next stop is on Long Island, NY and Minneapolis, Minn. (April 19 – 20), Chicago area (June 22 – 23) and Tampa/Brandon (June 23 – 24).

In December 2011, the Cancer Support Community Florida Suncoast (CSC) in Sarasota, Flr. acquired Brides Against Breast Cancer, which was formerly based in Portland, Or. It is now being managed by CSC as a support organization.

To find out how you can donate or get a dress, visit or follow them on Facebook.

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