A Nebraska wife is certainly paying it forward as her wedding dress is set to be worn by at least 12 other women.
Dawnetta Heinz, 22, said that after she tied the knot in July 2016, her wedding dress just sat in the closet of her home. Recently, when she and her husband began packing up for a move, Heinz decided she should do something with the gown.
“I never put much thought into what I would do with the dress. I am moving so I had the idea to give the dress to someone less fortunate,” Heinz told InsideEdition.com.
In a local Facebook group, Heinz stated that she was giving away the dress for free but wasn’t expecting the overwhelming response she received.
Women began commenting and messaging Heinz in hopes of donning the dress for their big days.
“I just posted in there saying if a bride is in need that would like the dress they could have it for free, they’d just need to have it dry cleaned. I didn’t expect it to blow up like it did," Heinz said. “That’s when I had the idea to ask them to pass it forward."
There are 11 more brides and counting who are waiting for their moment to wear the dress after its first recipient wore it this past Wednesday.
Arianna Pro, 27, wore the dress to renew her vows with her husband of six years. Pro said when she saw the dress in the Facebook group, it made her want to have the wedding that she never experienced.
“I just so happened to be browsing on Facebook. I saw the beautiful dress and I was the first one to comment. When my husband and I got married, it wasn’t a necessity to have the big dress and the big party. We had just lost a son and we needed a little light in our lives,” Pro said. “When I saw the dress, all the feelings came back. It was overwhelming. She [Heinz] snowballed my dream to have a real wedding.”
The couple renewed their vows on a yacht in San Francisco.
“It was so amazing to get the recognition as a bride. You are wearing this beautiful dress and everyone is gawking at you. It was a surreal experience,” Pro said. “I shipped the dress to the next girl. I know how I felt when I wore the dress and we get to pass that feeling on.”
Heinz also remembers that feeling all too well. She said on the day that she bought the dress at David’s Bridal, she immediately knew it was the one.
“I had my maid of honor there and it was the second dress I tried on and I fell in love with it. We both started crying and we just decided that it was the one,” Heinz said.
And now, that fairytale feeling is far from being felt for the last time. The latest recipient, Valorie Sheridan, is set to be married in the gown on Sunday.
“It is literally a blessing. It’s amazing to see other people happy and knowing they are going to feel good in it. A wedding dress is so special to a bride, and knowing that a dress that I picked out will make someone feel just as good as I did, is a blessing,” Heinz said.