A 30-year-old Canadian newlywed should be enjoying her honeymoon days right now, but instead she is tragically being laid to rest, all because of a new trend called "Trash the Dress." Maria Pantazopoulos was married recently but didn't want her wedding dress just hanging in the closet gathering dust, so she decided to have some fun, artsy photos taken of herself in her bridal gown. She posed on some rocks near a Canadian waterfall, with her feet in the water. Horribly, as the trim of her dress got wet and began to absorb more water, and get heavier and heavier, Maria was pulled under the river and drowned.

The photographer reported that Maria was standing in about six inches of water when her dress started to become soaked, dragging her down into the raging torrent. The photographer and another person tried to pull her out, but her dress was too heavy by that point. Said the photographer:

She went in and her dress got heavy, I tried everything I could to save her.

When word came that this tragedy was the result of something called "Trash the Dress," which I'd never heard of, I looked up the custom. Posing in water seems to be one of the more popular ways of "trashing" a wedding gown. In this ABC News article on the trend, one bride is completely underwater in her gown. Another bride wears her dress while a huge plume of fire shoots out from the back of it. I guess hanging the dress in the closet with some moth balls really is out of vogue!

I can't think of anything more horrible than dying in your wedding dress during what should be a custom celebrating the beginning of your marriage. No doubt Maria and the photographer never imagined they were in any danger. This is six inches of water, not a bride jumping out of a plane.

But Maria's tragedy can bring attention to the unintended consequences of this bridal trend. And hopefully it can save more lives by making women aware of the dangers of combining bridal gowns and water. If you don't want to have your dress gather dust, maybe "trash" it, in a fun but safe way. Like with condiments or something.

Have you ever done a Trash the Dress photo shoot or know someone who has?


Image via EpSosDe/Flickr