The older I get, the more I start to value the antiques and heirlooms that have been passed down to me by my grandparents. A stained glass piece made by the loving hands of my grandfather, a vintage turquoise necklace and matching earrings that once belonged to my great aunt with impeccable style. These items become more than just objects — they are a window to the past. They help me feel connected to my relatives and keep the memories of those who have passed alive.
Recent bride Jordyn Cleverly shares these sentiments. She tells Babble that about two years ago she began the search for the vintage wedding dress of her dreams, but nothing she tried on felt like “the one.” Then a light went on in her head. She realized that what she was searching for may already be in the closet of her childhood home: the wedding dress worn by her grandmother in 1962.
“She gave it to my father,” Cleverly explains. Her grandmother hadn’t known what to do with the dress. Her son (Clevery’s father) insisted that she hold on to it, so he kept it for her in a closet at his home. “He thought we could at least make a pillow out of it or something,” Cleverly says.
It turns out the gown was exactly what Cleverly had envisioned walking down the aisle in. After some alterations for sizing, she enlisted the help of Kortney J Photography to capture the exact moment she surprised her grandmother with the reveal.
The photos are nothing short of breathtaking. The emotion between the two women is palpable, and the dress is absolutely stunning. They also captured some beautiful moments of the bride holding a framed photo of her grandmother wearing the same dress on her wedding day.
Cleverly had never met her grandfather; he died before she was born. She says that although her grandmother has been a widow for about 23 years, her grandparents’ marriage has always been highly regarded within the family.
And her grandmother’s reaction says it all. Cleverly explains that at first, her grandmother was “speechless,” then continued whispering “wow” under her breath.
When the grandmother finally spoke to Cleverly, it was a whisper in her ear. “I married my high school sweetheart in this dress, now so will you,” she said.
What a beautiful moment and an amazing coincidence, as Cleverly has actually known her now-husband since middle school! It appears that Cleverly is taking after her beloved grandmother in more ways than one.
As for the bride, she says she “cried through the whole thing.” And who could blame her? The beautiful moment had an impact on the photographer as well, who posted the photos to Facebook with the caption: “Yes. You guessed it. I bawled.”
The aim of a beautiful photograph is to catch a moment in time and tell a story without words. These photos tell the story of two generations of women sharing a dress and an incredible moment together. And that is what family heirlooms are all about — memories to be passed down for generations to come.
Congrats on your marriage, Jordyn!