Ok, I have the seed of an idea in my head, but need help fleshing it out. This is pretty personal, so I'm a little bit nervous about sharing it. But I'd really appreciate some brainstorming help.
I was engaged to be married last year, but it didn't work out and we broke up. I now own the most gorgeous, most beautiful wedding dress in the world! But it's just collecting dust in my parents' closet. (Well, actually, it's still in the box, unopened. So I guess it's the box that's collecting dust!)
You can see it here:
Alfred Angelo... Find the perfect Wedding Dress, Bridesmaid Dress, Prom Dress, Flower Girl Dress or Mother of the Bride Dress at Alfred Angelo.
The photo does NOT do the dress justice! The magazine advertisement was MUCH better. The dress is stunning in it's simplicity. Understated. Elegant. VERY chic!
A thread with photos of real brides wearing this very dress:
alfred angelo 1148 brides!! « Weddingbee Boards
There are a few photos there, but one in particular caught my attention: Scroll down about 1/2 or 2/3 of the way down to see front/back photos of a bride wearing this dress. (Her screen name is Mrs. Dee to Bee.)
I don't really want to keep the dress indefinitely, but I don't want to sell it to just anyone. I want one of two things:
1. To give it to someone who would love it as much as I do. (And actually USE it!)
2. Sell it (or auction it off) and give the proceeds to a charity/cause I care about. I got this idea after seeing an episode of "Say Yes to the Dress" where a bride-to-be went through a broken engagement AFTER ordering her dress. Since the dress was custom-made, there were no refunds, so she donated the dress to the salon she bought it from. They in turn, gave the dress to a woman who'd come into their store but really couldn't afford any of the dresses. She was deaf.
Someone had mentioned an organization called Brides for Cancer, where I could donate the dress, they auction it off and the proceeds go towards cancer research.
It's NOT about the money. It's a very sentimental thing for me and since it's not about the money, I don't want to just list it on eBay or give it to the first buyer for a cheap price.
For several reasons, I have NO interest in donating to cancer research. But I'm incredibly PASSIONATE about microfinance and how tiny loans can help lift people out of poverty. My idea is to auction off the dress and donate the proceeds to a microfinance organization like Kiva.org.
I want to make this a BIG auction: meaning lots of buzz and publicity. The dress is modestly priced, but I'd love to sell it for much more than it would normally go for. Given the right presentation, campaign and benefit cause, I think it could be done.
There are two catches as I see it:
1. Every woman has her own vision of her wedding dress and obviously, the dress will only appeal to a certain number of women. It's a personal and unique choice. I've found other brides online that gushed (like I did) over the dress, but would this be a good idea?
2. The dress is a size 2. Fortunately, we never had it altered. (If we had, we'd never be able to sell it!) A size 8 or 12 are more common sizes. I'm wondering if this would seriously limit the potential for an auction?
Should I just do this locally? Or try to do an online auction nationally? Any suggestions for getting buzz?
Should I keep it local, get some other local merchants involved and use it as a way to introduce myself to the local business community (for future offline marketing efforts). If I did that, I'd need to keep the charity/recipient local too.
This is just an idea that's been brewing in my head. I'm not even sure I'll actually do any of this. I'm not sure how/if to proceed.
Is this a good idea? Feasible? Am I totally off my rocker?
I don't mind parting with the dress. But I'll keep it in the closet forever before I sell it to just anyone (especially for a fraction of the price!).
Thanks for the ideas!