Woman Recreates Famous 'Friends' Wedding Dress Scene After Her Husband Dies
Katie Swantek, 31, was left widowed when her husband Brett, 29, died in a kayaking accident in June, but instead of feeling sad when she looked at her wedding dress, Katie decided she wanted to make new, happy memories in it.
The x-ray technician and a volunteer EMT called up her closest girlfriends, ordered them to bring round their own wedding dresses and spent the day having fun in them, even hiring a photographer.
In one of the best images, the girls recreate the famous Friends scene where Rachel, Monica and Phoebe spend the evening on the sofa drinking in wedding dresses, talking over past relationships.
In others, they head to the hills near Katie's home in Genoa in Nebraska, USA, where they drink beer and eat pizza, just as the trio of the '90s sitcom did.
"We got married in 2015, had our first son in 2016, and Brett was unfortunately taken from us in June 2019," Katie explained.
"I was going through my house and came across the dress after my friend advised me to have a clear out, I remembered how happy I was the last time I was wearing it.
"I knew that I needed to make some new memories with the things that were important to me and Brett, so I ripped the dress out and put it on for the day.
"It seemed like if I was just to wear it for no reason everyone would just think I was crazy, so I figured best not to do it alone."
Katie adds: "We didn't cry, we weren't sad, we were just happy together in our dresses, it was so needed.
"You would have thought that it would become sad and emotional, but we just laughed for hours and hours.
"One of my friends couldn't zip hers up to the top anymore, well a few of us couldn't, and we were in hysterics over that.
"I have new pictures of my dress, and me in it, so now I can look at my dress and smile again.
"It was one of the best things I've done since Brett's passing, I learnt how supportive and wonderful my friends are."
Speaking of the inspiration for the shoot, Katie said: "Friends is one of my favourite shows, I watch it every night and that episode where they're in the dresses resonated with me so much at this point in my life.
"I would highly recommend this to anyone, I was bawling for an entire day but when my friends got there it became fun - you don't move on, you move forward."
Katie said she had messaged her friends in the day, and by 6pm they had all arrived in their gowns. "I couldn't do it alone, it would have been too upsetting, I knew I needed support from my girls," she said.
The ladies spent the rest of the night trading stories about their own wedding days and laughing hysterically.
Brett was a sales manager and volunteer firefighter, who loved kayaking. The couple owned seven kayaks together and would often head out in the water together.
Sadly, during one session in June, Brett fell under the water and didn't come back up. He was found 10 days later.
"We knew it was him, the only thing we saw was his hand above the water with our wedding ring on," said Katie of the tragic moment they found his body.
"He was amazing, everything I could have ever wanted, we would have been married for four years this year.
"My drunken, wedding dress wearing evening was amazing, I never expected to be able to smile in that dress again.
"It became a tool of what is my on-going recovery."
Featured Image Credit: Caters