How To Wear Bridesmaid Dresses as a Wedding Guest

How to Rewear a Bridesmaid Dress to Another Wedding

How To Wear Bridesmaid Dresses as a Wedding Guest

Need a dress for an upcoming wedding? If you have a bridesmaid dress sitting in your closet, it could be the perfect option. Even if you don’t already own one, bridesmaid dresses are worth looking at during your search for a high-quality and wedding-appropriate outfit.

Can You Wear An Old Bridesmaid Dress To A Wedding?

You absolutely can and should try to rewear one of your old bridesmaid dresses to a wedding. Since bridesmaid dresses were specifically made to be formal enough for wedding attire, they are a handy option if you can’t decide what to wear. Just make sure you follow some basic etiquette before you commit to rewearing your favorite bridesmaid dress.

1) Check The Wedding Colors: Don’t Wear the Same Color As the Bridesmaids

As long as your bridesmaid dress doesn’t fall within the wedding color palette, you should be good to go. If it does, you definitely should switch up your outfit plans.The bridesmaids are supposed to stand out from the guests in some way or another, so try not to match them.

Pink Bridesmaid Dress for Wedding Guest

Kennedy Blue Cameron Bridesmaid Dress in Desert Rose

2) Be Sure to Follow the Wedding’s Dress Code

Bridesmaid dresses are often floor length, which is appropriate for most common wedding dress codes. A floor length dress is typically best for formal weddings but also works for black tie, semi-formal weddings, and even beach weddings if the dress is flowy enough. If the wedding you’re going to requires cocktail or casual attire, consider hemming or altering your bridesmaid dress.

Orange Bridesmaid Dress for Wedding Guest

Kennedy Blue Haley Bridesmaid Dress in Cinnamon

3) Make Sure the Style and Color Suit the Season

Consider the time of year that the wedding is being held. There are certain colors that just make more sense depending on when the wedding is held. Dark colors are great for fall and winter weddings or formal weddings held at night. Lighter colors are perfect for summer and spring weddings or casual daytime weddings. 

The style of dress will make a difference too. If the bridesmaid dress you own is floor length and exceptionally detailed, maybe it would be better for a nighttime wedding in cold weather. A simple, flowy dress is great for an outdoor warm-weather wedding.

Bridesmaid Dress Wedding Guest Outfit

Wilderly Bride Marlowe Wedding Dress

Can I Wear A Bridesmaid Dress As A Wedding Guest? Best Dress Options

Bridesmaids dresses are a great option for your wedding guest attire, whether you have one already waiting to be reworn or you just want to buy something affordable yet high quality. You can wear any appropriate dress that fits the dress code and season of the wedding you’re attending. We picked some of our most versatile bridesmaid dresses to give you some ideas for your wedding guest dress!

1) Midi Length Bridesmaid Dresses Make Perfect Wedding Guest Dresses

Midi Length Bridesmaid Dress for Wedding

Kennedy Blue Francesca Bridesmaid Dress in French Lilac

A mid-length dress is an incredibly valuable option to have in your closet. Since these dresses are shorter than full length, they don’t appear overly formal for semi-formal or casual weddings. They also provide the perfect amount of modesty since they are cut below your knee. 

2) Simple Bridesmaid Dresses Can Easily Double As Guest Dresses

Olive Green Bridesmaid Dress

Kennedy Blue Sue Bridesmaid Dress in Olive Green

A simple bridesmaid dress gives you the opportunity to accessorize. A dress with a lot of detail might be too over the top for your average wedding. Some bridesmaid dresses are created with a contemporary style that will look great on any formal occasion.

3) Choose A Subtle Color That Isn’t Too Bold

Terrracotta Wedding Guest Dress

Kennedy Blue Kimmy Bridesmaid Dress in Burnt Orange

Wedding guest outfits are supposed to be subtle yet formal so you don’t draw attention from the wedding party (unless a bold look is requested from the bride and groom).Try to choose a color that isn’t going to turn heads or stand out in wedding photos. Most bridesmaid dresses are available in a wide range of colors so you can match the tone, season, and vibe of the wedding.

4) Satin Midi Bridesmaid Dresses Are Elegant and Stylish

Dusty Blue Wedding Guest Dress

Kennedy Blue Rowen Bridesmaid Dress in Dusty Blue

Satin bridesmaid dresses are an up and coming trend. Mid-length satin dresses are also trending for a variety of other events as well. Midi dresses in a high-quality fabric are the perfect balance of formal and casual.

Sea Foam Satin Bridesmaid Dress Wedding Guest Dress

Kennedy Blue Freya Bridesmaid Dress in Sea Foam

Consider a dress with an interesting neckline like a halter or the one shoulder-ruffle look above. Then choose a muted yet fun color like sea foam, rose, or dusty blue.

Pink Satin Wedding Guest Dress

Kennedy Blue Kai Bridesmaid Dress in Dusty Rose

The best part about satin is that it also looks great in a simplistic style. The silkiness and shine of satin creates interest even when the dress is minimalist. Satin will also gently drape along your curves for a flattering wedding guest look.  

5) Velvet Bridesmaid Dresses Are Perfect for Fall and Winter Weddings

Velvet Dress for Wedding Guest Attire

Kennedy Blue Carmen Bridesmaid Dress in Latte

Velvet is another less common bridesmaid dress fabric that is also popular for other occasions. Velvet dresses make perfect wedding guest attire for fall, winter, and nighttime weddings. 

How to Rewear a Bridesmaid Dress Creatively

The dress you wore as a bridesmaid is likely well-made, stylish, and cost you a bit of money. So, it would be a shame if you didn’t wear it again. You don’t have to look like a bridesmaid in your old bridesmaid dress. Find ways to creatively rewear your bridesmaid dresses so they can live up to their full potential.

Types of Events to Rewear Your Bridesmaid Dress

Bridesmaid dresses can be reworn as a wedding guest dress. They can also be used for formal events, balls, prom, fundraising dinners, and more. Any event that calls for a more formal look would be a great opportunity to rewear your bridesmaid dress. You could even make it work for a fancy date night at a nice restaurant or cocktail bar.

Pink Bridesmaid Dress

Alice Bridesmaid Dress in Desert Rose

Adding Accessories Creates a Stylish Wedding Guest Outfit

Accessories are one thing that is often purposefully lacking in a bridesmaid’s attire but work well for a wedding guest’s outfit. Some ideas for dressing up your bridesmaids dress for a different occasion include:

  • Add a belt that accentuates your waist and adds interest
  • Wear bigger or bolder jewelry than you would as a bridesmaid
  • Cover your shoulders with a cardigan, blazer, shawl, or scarf.
  • Choose a fun pair of heels 

Try a Different Hairstyle Than Your Bridesmaid Look

How did you wear your hair as a bridesmaid? When you rewear the dress, try a different hairstyle so you’re not completely repeating the same look. Often, your bridesmaid hairstyle is much different than how you would normally wear your hair. Try something more true to your own style, even if that’s just a simple wavy down look.

Pink Bridesmaid Dress for Wedding Guest

Kennedy Blue Cameron Bridesmaid Dress in Desert Rose

Turning a Bridesmaid Dress into a Cocktail Dress

Alterations are always an option! Consider hemming your bridesmaid dress into a cocktail dress to suit a more casual or cocktail wedding dress code. If you’re great at sewing you may be able to do this at home for free. If not, you could have your dress hemmed by a professional for less than the price of buying an expensive new dress. Another fun idea is to have your bridesmaid dress cut and re-sewn into separates so you have a top and a skirt to wear for a completely different look.

Make Sure Your Dress is Cleaned & Altered

What did you do with your bridesmaid dress when you got home from the wedding? Did it go straight to the dry cleaner or did you hang it up thinking you’d never wear it again? Before you decide to wear your old bridesmaid dress, try it on and make sure it’s clean and still fits. You may need to have it altered again if it’s been a while since you wore it.

Rewear Your Favorite Bridesmaid Dress as a Wedding Guest

Your old bridesmaid dress may be the perfect wedding guest dress depending on the details of the wedding you’ve been invited to. If the color, fit, and style are appropriate for an upcoming wedding, you can wear it again! 

Are you helping plan your friend’s bridal shower? Check out our bridal shower planning guide for inspiration!

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Black Friday Sale: $99 Bridesmaid Dresses!

Most bridesmaid dresses are $99 (up to $50 OFF) + up to 55% OFF wedding accessories.


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