According to an old English rhyme, the bride must wear “something old, something new, something borrowed, and something blue” to her wedding.
Abigail Kingston, a native of Pennsylvania, nailed the “old” aspect since she follows a family tradition of wearing a bridal gown that has been passed down through the generations.
When Abigail Kingston was a little child in her family’s Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, house, she adored staring up at the pictures on the wall of ten different brides all wearing the same dress.
It’s a 120-year-old family tradition that began in 1895, when Mary Lowry, her great-great-grandmother, wore the gown.
The ancient bridal gown was not without problems; it had yellowed and was riddled with tears and holes as a result of its age when Abigail acquired it. Because it was extremely delicate, she could only wear this ancient garment to the cocktail hour after 200 hours of rigorous skilled restoration.
When Kingston marries fiancé Jason Curtis on October 17, which also happens to be her late grandfather’s birthday, she will become the 11th lady in her family to wear the gown. The bride will change into the antique heirloom for the formal dinner following the wedding because the gown is so delicate.
After the wedding, the antique gown could be given to a 12th bride–a daughter of Kingston’s mother’s cousin, who has already expressed interest in it.
When the 30-year-old got engaged in September, she and her mother, Leslie Kingston, went to Vermont to seek for the outfit, which was with her great aunt Sara “Sally” Seiler.
Seiler was the gown’s fourth bride in 1960, and she passed it down to both of her daughters, who wore it in 1989 and 1991, respectively.
When the dress arrived in April, it was brown and didn’t look exactly like Leslie’s wedding gown from 1976, but it was just as amazing.
Only one bride had her gown dry-cleaned, and the train was custom-made for each bride.
Abigail and her mother realized the dress required more than just a wash, so they enlisted the help of Deborah LoPresti, a bridal designer who specialized in antique gown restoration.
She worked on the dress for 200 hours to get it to the beautiful champagne color it is now.
Here are the 11 brides featured in this article who wore the dress before the bride:
Bride no. 1: Mary Lowry wed John Broadfield Warren in 1895.
Bride no. 2: Jane Woodruff wed John Kearns in 1946.
Bride no. 3: Virginia Woodruff wed Douglas MacConnell in 1948.
Bride no. 4: Sara Seiler wed Duncan Odgen in 1960.
Bride no. 5: Laird MacConnell wed Timothy Hensler in 1976.
Bride no. 6: Leslie Kingston wed Richard T. Kingston, Jr. in 1977.
Bride no. 7: Janet Kearns wed Mark Daigle in 1982.
Bride no. 8: Jane Odgen wed James Houston in 1986.
Bride no. 9: Virginia Kearns wed Charles Stinnett in 1989.
Bride no. 10: Ann Ogden wed Robert Hausslien in 1991.