Wedding dresses turned into ‘angel gowns’ for babies who never make it home

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angel dress

KHOU: It’s not a bride who will be wearing any of the wedding gowns gathered by Lisa Grubbs, but a baby. Each donated dress is being transformed into angel gowns for babies who never make it home from the hospital.

“There’s something hopeful about that start of life, about a wedding, and to me, it’s that full circle,” said Grubbs, founder of NICU Helping Hands. “This child who is so loved by its parents, being wrapped in love by a bride.”

Lisa Grubbs is the wife of a specialist for premature babies. She and her husband believe the passing of a child is a sacred event that should be honored. It’s one reason she started NICU Helping Hands, a Fort Worth organization created to support parents both educationally and emotionally.

One of their missions is to insure parents who lose babies in the hospital have something special and sacred to bury them in.

Grubbs has gathered a small team of volunteer seamstresses to transorm bridal gowns into unique and beautiful works of art. A single wedding dress can make a dozen or more of the tiny angel gowns. Many look like satin or silk christening gowns for baby dolls.

“Often, we would just wrap little babies just in tiny little hospital blankets or washrags or towels, and we didn’t really have much to offer those families,” said Amy Vickers, a former NICU nurse who saw a need and volunteered to sew. “It doesn’t take the hurt away from them. But it just lets them know that we feel like their baby’s life means something.

Most of the volunteers who sew work alone, in their own homes, for their own reasons.

LaJean Sturman sews for a son she lost shortly after birth, 30 years ago. “It would have just meant the world, because I would have felt like I was sending him in something special, instead of something ill-fitting,” LaJean said.

Lisa Grubbs said women who donate their gowns often do so for personal reasons. One such donation came from a woman who had recently lost her own infant.

The angel gowns are donated to hospital NICU units. The need is far greater than it should be.

Volunteers say each angel gown is stitched with heart, and hope that the symbolic love of the wedding dresses are carried from the beginning of a new life, to another’s end.


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0 responses to “Wedding dresses turned into ‘angel gowns’ for babies who never make it home

  1. Thank you, DCG, for this beautiful post. Tears . . . .

    There should be Angel Gowns for the babies who are aborted, as well

  2. What a wonderful act of compassion! It gives me hope there are more such people amongst us.

  3. Leeann Springer

    As a lifelong lady who loves to sew; I have made hundreds of pillowcase dresses and other articles of love, for many years; donated through various venues. Wedding dresses turned into little angel gowns is a wonderful act of love. I have also made tiny outfits from men’s dress shirts for baby boys. This is a project that keeps on blessing others and gives comfort and compassion to hurting parents. Joanne’s Fabrics (well known fabric and hobby shop) has a sewing initiative project where many that sew, make dresses and pants outfits for needy children, in Africa, and in the United States. It is a sewing hobby that I’ve never grown tired from doing and each one is as individual as finger prints. Last year alone, the sewing initiative distributed more than 200,000 garments made by those who love to sew, all done by volunteers. B. Leeann Springer

  4. Beautiful! God surely blesses every stitch by these caring people.

  5. I would of love to have knowing about this website wen I had my wee boy who passed away


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