A York mum is inviting everyone to join the party this Saturday – by dressing in their gladrags and donating to vital grief support services.
Alex Lloyd, 39, came up with the idea for Party Dress Day after speaking to a friend whose toddler was outgrowing her party clothes without getting a chance to wear them.
She said: “Helen started posting pictures on Instagram of her daughter in the outfits because she didn’t want to wait for children’s parties to be allowed again.
“I’ve got two boys aged four and 18 months so couldn’t do the same, so I decided I’d put on a nice dress that had been sitting in the cupboard for weeks and had yet to be worn.
“It felt good to be out of thermals, wellies and jumpers for a change – and when I spoke to other people, they told me they were sick of wearing the same old thing too.”
Help bereaved families
The freelance journalist has decided to use the event as a way to help bereaved people suffering due to the pandemic and lockdowns, and is encouraging participants to donate to her Just Giving page in aid of The Good Grief Trust.
The national charity provides bereavement support services, signposts people in need to suitable organisations and works to remove myths and stigma around the subject of loss and grief.
Alex, of York, said: “I’ve worked with the charity on stories over the last year and also have friends who have been bereaved this last year, so it felt like the obvious choice.
“Grief is hard enough to live with in normal times so I cannot imagine the isolation of those going through it right now.
“There are more than 100,000 families who have lost someone to Covid on top of all of the other deaths, while I know that the lockdowns have triggered some difficult feelings for people who have suffered a less recent bereavement too.
“Grief is a painful emotion and a life changing experience that every one of us will face during our lives but I don’t think we talk about it enough or have the tools to support those suffering.”
People of all ages are invited to join the event on Saturday and Alex suggests they make their dress up day into a real house party, planning online drinks with family and friends or playing party games with the kids.
She said: “The whole idea is to lift your spirits and feel good after the hardest winter we can all remember, while giving back a little at the same time.
“I’d love people to wear their dresses all day too, from out on a muddy walk to doing the washing up – why not enjoy the novelty of wearing something nice?
“I’m really looking forward to seeing all the outfits and sharing them on our social media if people tag us.”
Find out more about Party Dress Day and make a donation at the Party Dress Day fundraising page.