My husband & I on our wedding day
My husband & I on our wedding day

A little over a month a go, I looked around my guest room, feeling overwhelmed and deflated. I could barely move around this overstuffed, underutilized room. Why? Boxes and boxes of stuff! Many contained wedding paraphernalia I hadn’t touched since that blissful day last year. (And what a glorious day that was!) Then a lightbulb idea popped in my head! That week, I sent out this email:

Subject line: “Wedding Stuff Giveaway in October!”

Good, I got your attention. 🙂

You are on this list because you are a bride-to-be.
Or you’re my gal pal and might know a gal-pal-bride-to-be.

Planning my wedding last year was one of the most rewarding experiences in my life.
And it was one of the most stressful.

“I need help!” was my mantra.
Thank goodness I had the best bridesmaids, friends and family ever who did help me.

Being a bride is a unique, terrifying and exhilarating phenomenon.
The amount of time, energy, hours and money spent on this one day is unbelievable
and incomprehensible to those who aren’t going through the same thing.

Why am I telling you this?
Easy. I want to help.

I want to help save a bride-to-be some stress, money and hours researching online.
My way of paying it forward, so to speak.
(Aka, a former bride’s wedding stuff garage sale.)

First-come, first-served of the following items:

-40 votives
-20 glass sundae boats/vases
-1 groomsman watch, utility knife and pen set
-tons of blank envelopes
-reams of cardstock and colored paper
-floral hairpieces (see attached!)
-200 white favor boxes
-50 gift bags
-10 plastic storage bins (great for stowing and towing all that wedding paraphernalia!)
-and more!

And guess what? It’s ALL FREE!

What’s the catch? Drive out to Rancho Cucamonga and pick it up.
Oh, and send me a pic of you & your hubby on the big day.
That’s it.

DATE: Saturday, Oct. 15
TIME: 10 am-12 pm (yup, only 2 hours!)
WHERE: My house (will send address in 2nd email)

Email back if you want to stay on this mass email or not.
Feel free to forward this to someone who’d be interested.
(But please inform this person to reference you to me;
Don’t want complete strangers coming to house. ;-).)

Hooray for free stuff! 🙂

Then I sent 2 subsequent emails with the following attachments, encouraging gals to reserve what they wanted: 1st Giveaway Flyer and 2nd Giveaway Flyer.

That day, my husband helped me clean up the house, move furniture around, bring out all the boxes of wedding items and arrange them on display, set up snacks, and smile as guests arrived. Two brides-to-be showed up. Both named Amber! 

Amber K. is a friend; Amber S. was a last-minute person. She was referred by my cousin Kathy and her cousin Karen, who is getting married next month. (Kathy was one of my bridesmaids and is now a bridesmaid in Karen’s wedding next month. Amber S. is also Karen’s bridesmaid and just got engaged in July.) 

So what did the Ambers take? 

  • All the platters
  • Most of the ribbon
  • Floral bouquet accessories
  • Rhinestone headband
  • 5 storage bins
  • 40 votives
  • All the beige cardstock
  • Feather fascinator
  • 9 glass bowls
  • The red dress
  • 50 gift bags
  • White tissue paper

And I made special arrangments for my friend/upcoming bride Jen to get the 200 wedding favor boxes as well as red stationery and ribbon at a later date.

Not everything was taken, but I made a good dent. And although not a big turnout, helping just 1 bride would have been enough; I’m helping 3! 

All in all, a former-bride’s-paying-it-forward-to-future-brides success! 🙂


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