"My heart is breaking for all the brides out there having to cancel and postpone their special day so I thought why not offer my dress to more amazing women," the fashion entrepreneur wrote on Instagram
On Thursday, the 49-year-old fashion entrepreneur announced on Instagram that the strapless, tea length wedding dress she wore on her big day is up for grabs, adding that her “heart is breaking for all the brides” whose plans have been impacted by the virus.
“Calling all brides to be… do you want to borrow my wedding dress from me?” Blakely, who tied the knot with entrepreneur Jesse Itzler in 2008, wrote. “I have already loaned it out twice… once to a good friend and once to a girl I just met. (Swipe to see the dress x 3)!”
And this isn’t the first time Blakely has lent the sentimental garment to a bride-to-be in need: “My good friend @JulieDGruber was having a hard time finding a wedding dress so one day I said, “just wear mine,” she said. “And she did!”
Blakely continued: “Another time I was hiking in Sun Valley and met a lovely woman on the trail, @NatalyDawn. She was newly engaged. Not sure what made me say it, but I said, “I know we just met, and this may sound strange but you can borrow my wedding dress if you want to.” As soon as I said it I thought… well that was a strange thing to say. She looked shocked and as politely as she could said she was looking forward to shopping for a dress with her mom etc. but thank you. We exchanged emails and I found out she was the lead singer of a cool band @pomplamoosemusic. Anyway… fast forward almost a year and I get a call from her. Her dress had been altered and they ruined the dress. It didn’t fit her at all. The wedding was in a few days and could she still take me up on my offer? Of course! She got it the day before her wedding and it fit perfectly! (Reminding me to never second guess that voice inside. I was meant to offer her my dress just didn’t know why at the time.)”
“My heart is breaking for all the brides out their having to cancel and postpone their special day so I thought why not offer my dress to more amazing women! Hoping this will possibly help ease someone’s plans during this time,” she said. “So if you’re a size 4 or 6 and want to borrow my wedding dress, comment below. Please tag anyone and everyone who needs to see this and feel free to share it! #LoveWins #TBT #Wedding #Bride#WeddingDress #Giveaway”
Blakely’s Instagram followers praised her for generosity amid the coronavirus outbreak — and one of them was even inspired to follow her lead!
“Happy to lend out mine too! It’s just sitting in a box and worn only once,” the social media user commented. “Spent a silly amount of money on it from Neiman Marcus. I only have boys and they are not getting married any time soon. Let’s start something!”
Another person added, “Omigosh! What a beautiful idea. I’ve been thinking about selling mine but I love the idea of making it a loaner!🌸”
The billionaire entrepreneur has long been committed to philanthropy — in 2013, she became the first self-made female billionaire to sign The Giving Pledge, a campaign that “encourages the world’s richest people to commit 50 percent of their wealth to philanthropic causes during their lifetime or after their death,” according to Entrepreneur.
“I am committed to the belief that we would all be in a much better place if half the human race (women) were empowered to prosper, invent, be educated, start their own businesses, run for office—essentially be given the chance to soar! I pledge to invest in women because I believe it offers one of the greatest returns on investment,” Blakely said of her decision.
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