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Rebecca Gruber

The dress: Carolina Herrera

Dresses tried on before finding The One: "I probably tried on 100. I felt like it was an endless process, but this was one of the first I saw and I just kept coming back to it!"

The story: "Three of my closest friends and I were getting married within a year of each other — funny how that happens, right? — and I wanted a dress that didn't look like anything they were wearing. I wanted a classic dress that would stand the test of time in photos, but I also wanted to feel like a princess and that's exactly what I felt like the minute I stepped into it. I loved how comfortable it was, and I loved the beadwork on the bodice."

Something old, something new...: "Good question: it's funny how you plan and plan and then years later you forget it all! I think my old and blue was a garter that my mother wore at her wedding. My borrowed was a beautiful triple-strand pearl bracelet with a diamond clasp that my grandmother lent me, and my something new was my gown!"

Where the dress is now: "I got married on Sept. 8, 2001. We had planned on having it preserved, but three days after the wedding, it was Sept. 11, and everything in Washington DC closed down for some time, so it never got cleaned. It's still hanging in a closet in my parents' house and sometimes when we visit, I slip it on to give my sons a good laugh!"

Source: Len DePas Photography

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