By Matt Wotus
A bride in St. Paul, Minnesota, wore five wedding dresses at a special photo shoot three weeks before her wedding.
To honor her family’s traditions, Colleen Dejno wore the wedding dresses that were worn by her great-grandmother, grandmother, mother and mother-in-law, as well as her own, during the shoot at Semple Mansion in Minneapolis.
“My mother told me, I knew that we had her wedding dress, and I knew that we had my grandmother’s because my aunt wore it in her wedding,” Dejno told KARE. “And, then my mother told me, well, we have your great-grandmother’s dress, too.”
The oldest dress, belonging to Dejno’s great-grandmother Mary, is from 1910.
“My great-grandmother was actually a seamstress, and she made her own wedding dress,” Dejno said. “It was her wedding gift from her employer was that they gave her the fabric and they let her use her work time to make it.”
The bride said that when she found out there was dress older than a century in the house, she had to see it. She tried it on, and while she couldn’t move a lot in the dress, it did go on.
After trying on her great-grandmother’s wedding dress, she tried on her grandmother’s, from 1947. Then she tried on her mom Patricia’s dress from 1973. Then her mother-in-law Lucy’s from 1967.
They all fit.
“I don’t know. That was just luck […] I tried them all on and it was just […] what are the odds, but they fit, so I should totally do this,” Dejno said.
Not only did she wear all the dresses, but she and photographer Jeannine Pohl, owner of Jeannine Marie Photography in St. Paul, looked through old wedding photos and attempted to recreate them in style and tone at the shoot. Dejno even found wigs to complete the looks.
“Oh my gosh, it was a photography high,” Pohl said. “I was like, ‘what just happened?'”
Dejno said her great-grandmother’s dress was her favorite.
“So, I really felt a connection to her while wearing that thinking, ‘Wow, she made this with her own hands and now I’m wearing it,’ and I felt that that was a really special one sort of between us, even though I had never met her,” she said.