hand wedding dresses from their Italian monastery becomes go
Can't afford that Vera Wang? Nuns offering second to atelier for thrifty brides and all they ask for is a donation
Sister Maria Laura runs atelier at the St Rita monastery in ItalyThrifty brides visit to pick up second hand dress and leave donationMonastery occupied by abused bride St Rita 600 years agoBrides visited to pray to her for happy marriage and began donating dressesCollection stands at over 100 and brides leave as much as 700 donationBy
It may be a country that's home to high end designers such asGiorgio Armani, Fendi and Dolce Gabbana but the women of Italy are seeking wedding dresses from somewhere a little more unexpected.
Thrifty brides are heading to Argentinian nun Sister Maria Laura's atelier at the St Rita monastery, a medieval complex hidden among the central Umbrian hills, to find their dream gown.
Sister Maria buy pandora bracelet Laura and her team run a second hand wedding dress service where disadvantaged brides once came to collect a wedding dress.
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Sister Maria Laura helps Irene Bonardi try on a wedding dress at the Santa Rita Sanctuary in Cascia, Italy. The convent has for years operated a second hand dress depot for brides of little means, and Maria Laura, who was a seamstress before entering monastic life two decades ago, says she loves the rush of emotion that comes with matching the right gown to a bride to be (pic credit: Nadia Shira Cohen/The New York Times/Eyevine/Redux)
However, as Italian brides seek cheaper weddings, the atelier, which was revamped in October to meet demand, has never been busier.
Charitable: Women began donating their dresses out of solidarity and as an offering to St Rita sales on pandora bracelets back in the 1950s and the collection has now amounted to hundreds(pic credit: Nadia Shira Cohen/The New York Times/Eyevine/Redux)
Eighteen years into her marriage, her husband was murdered in a family feud, and St Rita was admitted to the Augustinian convent of St pandora charms specials Mary Magdalene.
Women travelled far and wide to come and pray to her for their marriages to be saved.
Women began donating their dresses out of solidarity and as an offering to St Rita back in the 1950s and the collection has now amounted to hundreds.
Seamstress and designer Sister Maria Laura, who entered monastic life when she was 28, now runs the establishment and claims she can find the perfect gown for any bride who comes her way.
Sister Maria Laura is visited by around three women a week, and between eight and ten per month leave with their dream dress.
Using her design expertise, she alters the dresses to create open backs with ribbons, suggests where to cut the neckline, and reassembles inner padding to suit the particular bride.
In return for her services, many women return their dresses after their wedding so that another woman can have the same experience as them andsome leave up to 700 as a token of their appreciation, according to The New York Timesand Wanted in Rome magazine.
'It gives me great joy to see a young woman who can fulfil her dream of love with a dress appropriate for the happiest day of her life,' said Sister Maria Laura.
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