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Second Wedding Dresses – Dress Shopping Advice for Second Time Brides

Second time bride wearing dress holding flowers

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Choosing a wedding dress can be rather difficult for a remarrying bride especially if you’re taking into consideration the etiquette for second time brides. However, modern day society and wedding expectations are more flexible and continue to change every day.

While most second-time brides avoid going for the typical princess type wedding dress either because they’ve already tried it for their first wedding or because they feel as though it is not age appropriate, there is no hard and fast rule that a second-time bride should dress a certain way. However, there are guidelines that can help make it easier for you to choose.

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If you’re having trouble figuring out how to choose the right second wedding dress, we’ve got some ideas you may find useful!

Dress Silhouettes for Second Time Brides

In order to choose the perfect wedding dress for you, make sure you go for something that suits your body shape and flatters your figure.  

A-line gowns, sheath dresses and full skirted dresses are the most common type of dress silhouettes worn by second-time brides since they can give you a more confident and mature look.  

Second time bride wearing white wedding dress

Satin A-line gown by Tavifa Bridal. See it HERE.

If you’d like to wear something glamorous and sexy that you couldn’t or didn’t wear for your first wedding, a figure hugging, low open back wedding dress might be a good option for you to show off your curves and looking stunning on your big day. Don’t be afraid to be sexy because every bride has the right to feel gorgeous and perfect on their wedding day, whether it’s your first wedding or the second.

Some second-time brides believe that they should wear safe dresses that are not revealing or don’t have embellishments because they don’t think that it’s age-appropriate. However, you don’t have to choose one of these just because you might be worried about what others think.

Long bridal dress

Open Back Lace Wedding Dress by Polina Ivanova. See it HERE.

If you’re an older bride, it would be a good idea to eliminate wedding gowns that are better suited for younger brides, like princess-style gowns. While there are no rules about avoiding these styles of gowns, they can look unsuitable and might not reflect your personality.

Shorter dresses are also an excellent option for older second-time brides. If you’d like to wear a short dress but you also want to keep it modest and simple, it’s best to avoid having it shorter than knee-length since this can make you look overly sexual and can be unsuitable for a more mature bride. On the other hand, if you’re comfortable with showing some skin, then feel free to wear any length you prefer.  

Simple short wedding dress Long sleeve satin wedding dress image 0

Tea-Length Minimalist Wedding Gown by Piondress Bridal. See it HERE.

 Some older brides don’t feel comfortable wearing a strapless dress. If you feel the same but you also don’t want something that is too covered up, then we suggest going for a dress that has wider shoulder straps. You could try one with cap sleeves or three-quarter length sleeves.

Ivory Lace Long Sleeves Wedding Dress Tulle and Lace Bridal image 0

Wedding Dress with Long Sleeves by Blush Fashion. See it HERE.

If you worry that long sleeves will look dowdy or old fashioned, this is not the case. Kate Middleton and Grace Kelly both wore long sleeved dresses for their weddings and rocked the look. If they could do it then so can you but keeping the sleeves sheer can add some lightness to the look and help you avoid looking all covered up.

Nix the Dress and Try Something Different

Why not completely nixing the dress, and trying something different from your normal go-to silhouette?

modern bridal jumpsuit

‘Renata’ Bridal Jumpsuit by Piondress Bridal. Check price here.

If you’d like to go for a more daring look than usual, you could try a pantsuit or a bridal jumpsuit instead of a dress for your second wedding. These outfits generally have a more confident, daring appearance than the traditional dresses so if that’s the look you’re going for, one of these styles might be just the thing for you.

Don’t worry about whether you can still wear a veil if you choose to wear a jumpsuit or pantsuit for your wedding. Non-traditional wedding attire can be given a traditional touch by adding a veil, detachable cape or a train.

One thing to note is that some of your guests might also be wearing the same outfit since jumpsuits are now quite a popular look for wedding guests. To distinguish yourself from the crowd, adding bridal accessories like a veil, gloves or tiara will help you stand out since it will be highly unlikely that any of your guests would arrive with similar accessories.

What Colors Can a Second-Time Bride Wear?

There is no saying that a second wedding dress should or should not be white. If you want to wear a white dress a second time, that’s totally fine.

Bride wearing blush wedding dress

Blush Pink Wedding Gown by Dream and Dress. See it HERE.

Bride with grey bridal separates

Grey Bridal Separates by Like Angel. See it HERE.

If you would like to add a pop of color to your look on your wedding day, choose a color that flatters your skin tone and complements your wedding gown. Some popular hues include champagne, ivory, pinks and blues. These colors suit any bride, be it your first or second time.

Veils, Accessories and Embellishments for Second Time Brides

Wearing a veil for the second time around is a matter of choice, but many brides tend to omit it.  The bridal veil is representative of youth and innocence, symbolized by it covering the bride. When the bridegroom lifts it from the face of his bride for the first time, it’s representative of consummating the marriage.

Bride wearing birdcage veil

Birdcage Veil by Yuric Wedding Shoppe. See it HERE.

Typically, the veil is not lifted during a second marriage, so if you’re worried about breaking tradition, it might not be a good idea to have a full-length veil covering your face at your second wedding. There are many other types of veils to choose from, but one of our favorites is the short birdcage veil.

Bride wearing long veil

Long Stylish Veil by Sarafina Lauren. See it HERE.

If you want a long veil, then one way to go about it is to keep you face uncovered during the ceremony. But remember that these are all guidelines, and nothing is written in stone. If you want to have the veil lifting, go for it.

If you’d prefer to omit the veil entirely, you can instead go for a jeweled tiara or clip. You can also wear a headpiece, or you can wear both the headpiece and the veil together. Depending on how you want it, these can be either simple or dramatic.

If you’re going for a simple, but colorful bridal look for a summer wedding, consider wearing a floral crown or some other floral hair arrangement to pull off the look. These can be made out of silk flowers or can also feature real flowers, depending on your preference. 

To sum up…

Being a second time bride comes with experience and maturity, and chances are, you’re more confident, relaxed and know what you want this time around. You’ve been there, done that and you’re going back because you know it’s worth it.

It’s a time for joy, to celebrate finding love and it should be a time for laugher, celebration and joy. It is a common misconception among some brides that getting married for the second time is not as fun as it is the first time, but there is no reason why it shouldn’t be. Make the most out of it and make sure to have as much fun (if not more) on your second wedding day as you did at your first.