MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Saying yes to the dress is a highlight for any bride. But the moment no bride ever wants to experience is her fiance calling it all off.
One woman who experienced that heartbreak is joining a new trend called “Trash the Dress.”
“I though it was love at first sight,” said Shelby Swink as she thought about the first time that she saw her wedding gown. She must have sat in that dress for 30 minutes. She was so in love with it that the store people had to tell her to go home.
Shelby thought to herself, “Oh this is the one.”
But the week of the big day came.
Shelby’s ex fiancé sat her down and told her he was contemplating calling off the wedding. She shook it off as cold feet.
The next day he sat her down to say, “You know, I’m just not in love with you and I don’t want to marry you, I don’t want to spend the rest of my life with you.”
The news broke her heart but didn’t break her.
“I didn’t want to be that girl that everybody was tiptoeing around and like ‘Poor Shelby.’”
Shelby decided to face the heartbreak head on, starting with the dress.
Elizabeth Hoard sent Shelby a Facebook message suggesting that she trash the dress.
“At first I though It was crazy because it is an expensive dress and I didn’t really want to ruin it.”
Elizabeth also suggested trashing it on her wedding day.
Shelby didn’t want to just spend my would-be wedding day sitting at home alone eating ice cream and watching Netflix.
She decided to do it.
But she wasn’t alone. Surrounded by family and friends, paint, feathers and glitter, Shelby gave her wedding dress new life.
Her friend Carolyn didn’t wait for Lizz (Elizabeth) to say go. “She threw the paint on me and I was like ‘woah,’” said Shelby.
At that moment she literally let everything go. She was free of all of the disappointment and all of the hurt. “I just felt it leave me.”
According to Elizabeth, most women I think would be crushed, be stopped by that, and that saying goes life gives you lemons what do you do? And Shelby made a big old glass of freaking lemonade.
The pictures were posted on a bridal blog.
“Lizz actually popped up a picture of this gorgeous, gorgeous picture of Shelby with her paint and I was just mesmerized I was like this is amazing, ” said Joelle Scholl.
The Barefoot Bride shop is displaying the dress, giving a sea of white a splash of color and perspective.
Joelle saw what she did to get her feelings out and celebrate the day that would have been her wedding day as the day that’s going to be the next chapter in her life. “It just made me want to have the dress in the shop to kind of remind girls that that’s really what it’s about.”
“It doesn’t matter what happens in life as long as you stay true to yourself and don’t dwell on the negative and focus on the future you’re going to get through anything.”
Shelby’s dress will be displayed at Barefoot Bride through the beginning of the year. A portion of proceeds from the shop’s sales will go to ‘Be Free Revolution’.