Not to sound totally extra, but we’re all about the modern trend of wearing a reception wedding dress for your wedding party. As weddings defy tradition more and more, the concept of wearing a different outfit post-ceremony has become increasingly popular among brides. Sure, it may seem rather excessive, but hear us out on why it makes sense.
First, if you’re the type of bride-to-be who can’t settle on a single bridal style (so.many.options.), a second dress for the reception is a brilliant way to rock two looks you just can’t decide between. As a style chameleon, want to show off your sartorial prowess, and we’re here for it. So long as the two looks truly differ, you won’t regret taking two dresses for a spin.
A natural second look is sequins. From white to rose-gold to silver, glittering paillettes are party-perfect whether you go full-length, midi, or mini. You can choose from tried-and-true bridal designers or dip into fashion-forward labels you might not have considered for your ceremony gown. Monique Lhuillier, Oscar de la Renta, Sachin & Babi, Emilia Wickstead, and Valentino make knockout versions.
For the bride who’s not entirely comfortable in a gown for hours on end (heck, who is?), a quick change into a shorter hemline is lovely. For the purist seeking something casually elegant, Laure de Sagazan’s long-sleeve mini dress is perfection. A daytime bride will like ethereal lace detailing like from Savannah Miller, Jonathan Simkhai, and Bo & Luca. For evening impact, festive details like feathers, fringe, and beading are a tasty treat. Suzanne Harward, Tadashi Shoji, Anya Fleet, and Caroline Hayden deliver on this front, among others.
If you’re really going for theatrics with a ceremony gown, a pared-back slip or minimal sheath makes for a refreshing second act. Alex Perry’s satin crepe Alessandra gown is strikingly simple, or consider Leanne Marshall’s silk Karalyn gown. Or, you’re the opposite and want a simple look for your ‘I dos’ and a dramatic dress for the party—so fun! Francesca Miranda’s golden Ada Gown comes with fringed tiers make for twirling the night away. Likewise for Chana Marelus’ beaded fringe Angelica Gown. To really up the ante, you can go the couture route with Ashi Studio’s structural high-lo dress—a major fashion moment!
Color is another option if you’re in the mood. A fanciful black cocktail dress like Lazaro’s beaded and feather-trim mini makes for a moody translon for evening or Gracy Accad’s prim tea-length midi in sky blue is your wedding is during the day. Colored embroidery is pretty as can be, too—Hayley Paige makes a gorgeous style.
We can’t talk about a second look without discussing pant and jumpsuit options. From feminine top-and-bottom sets (Danielle Frankel and Lela Rose both offer sleek off-the-shoulder looks) to dramatic all-in-ones (don’t miss Danny Mizrachi’s dramatic jumpsuit with a cape or Rime Arodaky version with a sheer appliqué train), options run the gamut. All are a modern way to do a second look and can be worn again for various evening events. What’s not to love?
If you’re gravitating toward the idea of a reception wedding outfit, peruse our edit of 70 styles ahead. Because, why wear one wedding dress when you can wear two? All the inspiration you need lies ahead.