As a bride, many decisions must be made when it comes to your wedding day look, from the shoes to the hairstyle. For brides with tattoos, showcasing or downplaying their ink is a big decision in and of itself. Tattoos can run the gamut of bright colors or just all black, but no matter the design, the choice to put them on display ultimately comes down to incorporating them into the full bridal look.
Chest pieces can be accentuated with sweetheart necklines, delicate wrist and arm ink can be emphasized by a minimalist gown, and full-back designs can be displayed between perfectly placed straps. There are endless possibilities to draw attention to your design if that’s what you want. And, boy, do we have the inspo to prove it.
Ahead, 24 brides with tattoos who absolutely slayed their bridal look—body art and all.
Keep Things Simple
This bride’s wrist ink is prominent enough to be seen without overpowering the dress. A sleek bridal look from head to toe is just the ticket here. We love how the tattoo's placement puts it on full display in bridal portraits without being too obvious.
This subtle heart tattoo was definitely ready for a close-up on the wedding day. Double thumb rings cast a spotlight on the hand ink while a perfectly placed bouquet charm brings the message home. It's all about love on the big day, after all.
Show Some Shoulder
It's your wedding day, so be sure to let your confidence shine through one tattoo at a time. We can't help but notice this radiant goddess's stunning shoulder piece featuring a gorgeous sun emblem. Photographed alongside a billowy dress and dreamy beach backdrop, the end result is both captivating and artful.
Mimic the Design
If you’re working with a tattoo that is characterized by a shape that can be easily mimicked, play into that. This bride’s delicate horseshoe ink on the back of her arm had all the factors for a perfect sartorial setup. The low back of her wedding gown creates a U-shape that has us seeing double at her mid-century modern nuptials.
Give Them a Peep Show
Classy and fabulous. Choose a gown with a sheer neckline to ensure that just enough of your tattoo shows. Here, the beaded lace gown thinly veiled a colorful chest piece in a way that still revealed enough to keep things chic.
Be Intentional With Sleeves
Sleeves don't have to be your enemy. With so many styles to choose from, there are bound to be sleeve options that showcase artful arms like the masterpieces they are. These slit billowing sleeves poetically part in exactly the right way to let the bride's forearm ink take pride of place at her botanic garden wedding.
Opt for a Plunging Back
Spine tattoos are striking, so opt for a wedding dress with a low back to really show them off. Take things a bit further with lace detailing that will only serve to emphasize the work of art. We love how this scalloped-lace trim not only frames the tattoo but mimics the font as well.
Don't be shy when it comes to colorful ink. It's a part of you after all. Thread in some of the same colors of the tattoo into your ensemble like this bride did with her groom's emerald jacket and dusty-hued florals for a visual that does anything but clash.
Embrace Your Signature
Think of a tattoo as a signature of sorts, especially when it’s literally your name—or at least an initial. Sure, a strapless dress is a go-to for showing off ink in all its glory, but this bride upped the ante with a sophisticated portrait neckline that only amplified her body art. And don't get us started on that gorgeous blue color...
Weave in the Bouquet
A tattoo full of bright colors is undeniably going to stand out. So, why not tie those colors into the bouquet? These bright coral anemones and yellow ranunculi form a cheery bridal bouquet that beautifully complements the bride's half sleeves.
The tattoo on this bride’s shoulder blade is simple and delicate, a design she unsurprisingly wanted to show off. The strapless gown, along with the minimalist drop earrings, grounded the visual with an air of elegance and femininity. We love that she kept all the details from her hair to the dress detailing in complete symmetry, further amplifying the asymmetrical placement of the ink.
Opt for a Sweetheart Neckline
A sweetheart neckline is by far one of the most popular in bridal fashion. This bride’s choice in neckline couldn't have been better suited for rocking her tattoos, hitting at just the right spot to showcase her floral motifs. Even her wedding bouquet carried on a similar theme with peonies and roses.
Square necklines offer a regal alternative to the feminine romance of sweetheart styles. They're also wonderful for calling attention to a distinguished chest piece. This bride's ink is elegantly underlined by the bodice of her jumpsuit for her California nuptials.
Embrace the Whimsy
Feathered gowns can add a bit of whimsy to a bridal look, regardless of season or style. This playful gown beautifully complemented the artful design of the bride's arm ink. She definitely nailed the romantic bridal vibes—even down to the crystal floral headpiece!
Play Into the Placement
A foot tattoo can actually serve as the ultimate hidden gem on your wedding day. This bride selected the most appropriate strappy sandals to show off her ink during those memorable getting-ready photos. Plus, we're sure they made an appearance as she took over the dance floor.
Make a Powerful Statement
Don't be afraid to let your tattoos take center stage as you walk down the aisle. This gorgeous bride strikes a harmonious balance between feminine and edgy by seamlessly incorporating her ink into her bridal look. An artful floral tattoo on her shoulder makes for striking imagery, while a delicate sternum design flourishes from beneath the lace dress.
Create an Illusion
Sleeves have certainly become the underdog when it comes to the tattooed bridal community (unless they're covering up the ink). But we're on a mission to clean up their image. These sheer tulle beauties give the bride an ethereal appeal for her autumnal wedding without shadowing her wrist art.
Scoop-back silhouettes are a bride's best friend when it comes to showing off a back tattoo. This delicate cowl back couldn't be more exquisite. Not only does it show off the text between the shoulder blades but also features a trail of elegant covered buttons to lead the eyes there.
Play Up a Corset
Backless dresses aren't the only option for flaunting some shoulder ink. Corseted styles can be super versatile in what they show, and what they conceal, by giving you the option to tie the laces tightly or leave some wiggle room for artwork to peak through. This bride played up the style's lower profile to show off her shoulder design while twirling around the dance floor of her nuptials in Israel.
Cut It Out
Tattoos located on the torso can be a bit more difficult to showcase as they're typically covered by a bodice. Enter, cutouts. An intentionally placed cutout can provide the perfect window for revealing your otherwise hidden ink. This bride made full use of her bridal gown's cut-out illusion back for displaying celestial ribcage art at her modern DC wedding.
Think About Hair
Dress silhouettes and designs aren't the only thing to consider when illuminating body art. Hairstyles can often create a hurdle, too. This bride set a romantically undone updo to one side to let her spine tattoo do all the talking at her Malibu wedding.
Mirror the Details
The intricacy of a tattoo’s design is ultimately a reflection of the story it’s trying to tell. Carry that theme over into your wedding dress selection by opting for a gown with similarly intricate patterning. This bride's small tattoos are like pieces of treasure scattered over her arms, much like the delicate florals of the dress she wore for her Italian ceremony.
Go for Grand
We can't think of a more dramatic display than framing body art with the grandeur of cape sleeves. This bride's gown is quite minimalistic from the front but completely comes to life in the back. The open V-back beautifully showcased her tattoo while shoulder-to-floor sleeves ensured it didn't go unnoticed at her magical desert wedding.
Try a One-Shoulder Gown
Not only does this one-shoulder dress with lace overlay offer some peekaboo action, but also it allows the bride to discretely show off her tattoos. Upon closer inspection, you'll notice a medley of smaller tattoos lining her hands, wrists, and even her left shoulder. Together, they add a panache-packed statement without needing any additional accessories.
Are there wedding venues where I can't show my tattoos?
Typically, this would depend on the placement of the tattoo rather than the ink itself. For example, many houses of worship have strict dress codes that only allow modest bridal fashion choices or require certain body parts to be covered. If you're unsure, it's always best to check with the venue first.