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Military brides shine in white
Program provides wedding dresses
Bride WEB 1
Jennifer Schirmer-Smith, right, helps Rachel Spare with a wedding dress at Bravura. The bridal store in south Forsyth donated dresses to military brides as part of Brides Across America project. - photo by Autumn Vetter
Rachel Spare traveled more than 500 miles from home on a recent afternoon to find the dress of her dreams.Spare stood on the runway of Bravura smiling in her fitted lace wedding gown as she enjoyed the priceless moment.Thanks to the national project Brides Across America, the dress itself was free for the military bride.Bravura, at The Avenue Forsyth, was one of two businesses in Georgia — and just 37 in the U.S. — to hold an event this month offering free gowns to the women in white for the men in uniform — or vice versa.Shop owner Shirley Fraser said she wanted to do what she could to help those who serve in the military.Being in the fashion business, she decided a free dress event was the best way to help.“It’s rewarding. Giving is easy,” Fraser said. “I think every bride who walks out seems very happy.”Susan Wilson, Spare’s mother, said her daughter planned to find her dress at an event like this one after a friend did just that last year.With no shops participating in Spare’s home state of Florida, she and her mother, who lives in Mississippi, met in Forsyth County to find the dress.“It’s been a great experience,” Wilson said.