That’s what happened to Rosanne Flight of Southern Harbour.
Thirty-one years after her wedding, she’s discovered her wedding dress is missing.
When both of her sons got engaged to be married this past Christmas, the subject of Rosanne’s wedding dress came up.
She had been discussing the dress with her niece. She hadn’t taken her dress from its box since she had it heirloomed three decades ago. It had been sealed away by a drycleaner, in a heirloom box, after her wedding.
“They store it in a box, and it’s not supposed to fade or anything,” said Rosanne. “You just keep that box closed so the air don’t get at it … until you want to use it again, or have it for your daughters.”
Rosanne married her husband, Kevin, in 1985, and had the dress heirloomed in 1986.
It stayed in the box ever since, because she didn’t want to break the seal.
She says, perhaps if she had daughters instead of two sons, she might have opened the box sooner to show off the dress.
Several weeks ago, with the intention of showing her family — including her two soon-to-be daughters-in-law — Rosanne decided to open the box.
“I was home by myself and said, ‘I must look at it by myself first,’” she remembers.
The first thing she noticed was a veil. She thought this strange, since she didn’t wear a veil; she wore a hat.
Then she noticed the dress. It was long-sleeved white satin — like hers — but she knew something was off, even though the dress fit when she tried it on.
“After I got it on, I was like ‘this is not me.’”
Sure enough, after getting out the photo album to look at her wedding dress, she realized was she had suspected.
“I said, ‘Oh my Jesus, it’s not my dress!’”
At first, Rosanne says she didn’t want to believe it. None of her family could hardly believe it.
She says she doesn’t even remember which drycleaner she went to — but she says it would have been in St. John’s. She bought the dress at the Model Shoppe, and thinks they suggested a place to get it heirloomed.
“I was frightened to death, afraid it would turn yellow … well, now, I wish I had kept it hung up in my closet (instead)!”
With everyone excited to see the dress after all this time, they now have a mystery on their hands. Where’s Rosanne’s dress?
“I treasured it,” she says.
While she admits it’s an incredible long shot to recover her dress, she thought if she shared her story, you never know who might see it. Perhaps someone in the same boat as Rosanne has her dress.
“I don’t know if I’ll ever find mine. It’s been so long … Whoever’s got mine probably got divorced and got my dress burnt (by now),” she joked.
And since telling her friends, Rosanne says several have gone into their closets “just to make sure.”
So if you have a wedding dress sitting in a box in your closet, you may now be tempted to go take a look, as there’s a possibility — especially if you were married around 1985 or 1986 — that it may not even be your dress.
If, by chance, you even happen to have Rosanne’s dress — get in contact.
“I’d love to get the call saying they found my dress,” she said. “It’d be a miracle.”