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Posted on Tue, Jul 9, 2013 : 11:34 a.m.

Vera Wang gown finds bigger purpose at Brides Project resale shop in Ann Arbor

By Amy Biolchini


The Brides Project designer and brander Kellie Bambach, Executive Director Barb Hiltz, Marketing Co-Chair Ashley Edwards, and The Brides Project Co-Chair Monique Sluymers stand with wedding gowns inside of their former space on West Liberty Street on Sept. 13, 2011.

Angela J. Cesere | file photo

A strapless Vera Wang gown has connected three strangers from across the country through a small Ann Arbor resale shop with a big mission, according to media reports.

The Brides Project, a volunteer-run shop now located at the Courtyard Shops at 1689 Plymouth Road, opened in 2011 in downtown Ann Arbor. Relying on donated wedding dresses, proceeds from sales go to help cancer patients and their caregivers.

Since it opened, the shop has sold 309 gowns and raised $107,000 for the Cancer Support Community of Greater Ann Arbor -- the organization that operates the Brides Project, the Detroit Free Press reported.

Among the 1,005 dresses that have been donated is a Vera Wang gown, first purchased by a Chicago woman for $13,000. After finding the Brides Project, the woman donated the gown to the shop, the Free Press reported.

Since then, one bride has walked down the aisle in the Vera Wang gown and felt compelled to return it to the Brides Project afterwards. A Romulus bride has now bought the dress to wear in her wedding next year, and also plans to return the dress to the shop, the Free Press reported.

Amy Biolchini covers Washtenaw County, health and environmental issues for Reach her at (734) 623-2552, or on Twitter.



Tue, Jul 9, 2013 : 9:09 p.m.

After reading previous articles about wedding gown boutiques in Ann Arbor, I'm so happy to see an article highlighting a different option than going to the overpriced boutiques to purchase a wedding dress. This option is more cost effective and eco-friendly and the money goes to a great cause. IMO this is by far a better choice for any bride.


Tue, Jul 9, 2013 : 6:25 p.m.

Keep the dresses moving forward


Tue, Jul 9, 2013 : 3:57 p.m.

Experienced brides realize repeat sales are crucial to success for most small businesses