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Do You Really Need a Second Wedding Dress?

Wedding planners on both sides of the debate weigh in.

Contributing Writer
wedding lace
Photography by: Mariel Hannah Photography

"Need" is a word brides-to-be throw around pretty loosely when it comes to wedding planning. You need to love your fiancé(e). You don't need a gourmet donut wall. But even with this rational understanding, sometimes you're struck with inspiration and it feels as though you really do need all of those little extras. For many women, that list of must-haves includes two wedding dresses. If you're one of the many brides-to-be trying to make a decision about whether or not you should follow the trend of changing into a second dress, read on. We spoke to a few planners on either side of the debate to add some perspective and help you decide what's right for you.

 

Things that Run Up the Price of Your Wedding Dress

 

Nope! It'll cost you.

You should only go for a second wedding dress if you can honestly afford it. Go through all the possibilities with your soon-to-be-spouse and discuss any area the extra funds could go to. If making a costume change beats out all other possibilities, then shop on. If not, remember that you chose your wedding dress because you loved it. The thought of wearing it all night should make you happy.

 

Yes! You can choose one that's easier to dance in.

While there are many reasons brides opt for double the dresses, being able to get down on the dance floor lies somewhere near the top. "I think a change of dress can be freeing for a bride," agrees Jennifer Thye of Imoni Events. "She can pick the dress that fits the ceremony vibe and then change into something more comfortable for the dancing part." With this in mind, remember that it's also possible to alter your look without a full wardrobe change. Options like detachable skirts, trains that can be removed instead of bustled, and overlay tops can all go a long way when it comes to changing up your style.

 

Nope! It's not worth the additional stress.

The search for two wedding dresses can go one of two ways. Best case scenario: It can settle what feels like an unbreakable tie between your top two dresses. Score! Worst case: Finding another gown feels like one more thing on your growing to-do list. If you fall into the first camp, congratulations! If you're in the latter, don't make yourself crazy. While it's certainly a trend we've seen a lot of, two gowns are hardly a requirement. "I rarely have a bride who has a wardrobe change on her wedding day," admits Lynda Barness, a master wedding planner with I Do Wedding Consulting. "In my experience, the women have spent so much time (and money) on their first choice that they don't even think about another dress." So if you've found "the one" don't feel pressure to keep searching—dance the night away with your wedding dress soulmate.

 

Yes! It's your day.

"It's such a fun way to shift the vibe of the day and announce yourself back into the party!" says Rachael Lunghi of Lace and Likes. But her enthusiasm for the trend doesn't stop there. "Who doesn't want the chance to wear two magical dresses on their wedding day?" she adds. Even though she's 100% on board, Lunghi still advises brides to consider their hair and makeup and ensure it works for both styles. Changing a dress is one thing, but updating an entire look would take precious time away from enjoying the day's festivities—the one thing you definitely need to do!

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