Is It Realistic to Repurpose Your Wedding Lehenga?

Is it realistic to repurpose your wedding lehenga? It seems like one of those things that a lot of people talk about but hardly anyone actually does. There are several blog posts and articles in fashion magazines that talk about repurposing a bride’s wedding lehenga(s) into another outfit or pillowcases or picture frames etc. But it’s not that easy to do. And the effort and cost may be too high.

Repurposing your wedding lehenga sounds great but executing on it is actually pretty hard.

Perhaps for people living in India, Sri Lanka, or Pakistan this is feasible. But for those living in the USA, Canada, and other countries it’s time, cost, and logistically prohibitive.

What tailor or seamstress? Finding these people in general is hard — repurposing your lehenga into pillows or scarves is specialized work

bride-dulhan-Indian-wedding-Gujarati-Jain-Hindu-South-Asian-Newport-Beach-Marriott-lehenga-panja-hand-jewelry-dupatta
Photo: Aaron Eye Photography

In general,

  • It’s hard to find someone good
  • Once you do find someone it’s very time consuming
  • The costs add up quickly and you might as well just buy a new outfit/pillowcases

I found a seamstress to custom make a simple salwar kameez once but she did a pretty bad job so I wouldn’t recommend her. I had to go back to her 3-4 times for fittings which I found time consuming. In the end I’m glad I tried the bespoke option but my conclusion was it’s better to just buy something already made and get it altered.

Granted it’d be easier to alter your heavy dupatta but you don’t need just a dupatta, you need a whole outfit to go with it.

And I don’t know about you, but mine was so heavy that even if I got mine cut smaller it would look odd to pair with everyday clothes, or even meeting friends for dinner, as it’s so blingy.

{It’s Hard, So Why Repurpose Your Lehenga?}

You kind of have to throw practicality out of the window and focus on the sentimentality of repurposing ones wedding lehenga(s). To be hold onto them and use them for a long time after the wedding is nice. So the time and effort invested is justified by that vs. practicality.

{Lug Your Lehenga To India?}

Someone suggested to me that I bring my lehenga with me on my next trip to India and get stuff made out of it there. Yeah, I suppose this is an option but each of my lehengas weighed at least 20lbs. each. That’s all I’d have allowance for in my luggage. Not to mention that the last thing I want to do when I go to India is chase after tailors to make pillow cases.

{Reusing Not Repurposing}

The only times I’ve heard of people “repurposing” their wedding outfits, weren’t repurposing but re-usage. For example when they have a baby and taking newborn photos with the dupatta draped around the baby. Or my sister who is saving her lehenga for her daughter.

Another woman I met, had her one year anniversary party and re-wore her lehenga at that.

{Take Aways}

I think this is one of those things that sounds nice in theory but is actually quite difficult to execute on. So many people have this thought and then realize how difficult it is and the wedding lehengas end up in storage at your parents’ house. And then people save them for their daughters or holding off to do something with it “someday”.

Have you or someone you know successfully repurposed their wedding lehengas? Please comment!

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