Bridal Club Magazine
If you are getting married for the second time around it is
still a new beginning for you and your partner, a reason to
celebrate and start your new life together and exciting for you
According to the statistics, four out of ten weddings that take
place are now second weddings for one or both partners, and while
those words 'till death do us part' are spoken once again, there
are many reasons why those vows are no longer in place.
The death of a partner or a break down of a marriage is certainly a
traumatic, lonely and sad time in anybody's life and to find love
again can be a truly magical time after so much unhappiness.
Planning your wedding for the second time around can be just as
thrilling as the first time. Maybe you never had the wedding you
wanted, or you could not afford it and this could be the perfect
time to finally have the wedding of your dreams.
You may not want to make it a lavish affair or invite so many
guests. Just the two of you going away to some far off
paradise could be what you are planning.
Whatever or wherever you are planning, it is still your special day
and you will be just as excited and nervous as any bride can
You may find some of the following tips can help in the planning of
your second but still so important wedding day.
Second Marriage - Invitations and Guests
You will want to match your invitations to reflect the type of
wedding you are having. If you are going for the full
ceremonial wedding then your formal invitations would be
appropriate. If you are having a relaxed ceremony, your
invitations should reflect this. Sending out invites for the
second time round the chances are that it is probably going to be
you and your partner doing it (as opposed to having your parents'
details on the card). If either of you have children you
could include them in your invites with wordings such as:
Ms Smarty Pants with her daughter, Penny May and Mr Teddy Bear
with his son, Jimmy James request the pleasure of your company at
the joining of their families
Or the more relaxed wedding invitations could read along the lines
The Von-Trap Family would love you to share our special day of
celebrations when we join together as one with the Goodyear
You may find that you will have built up a good relationship with
your former partner's family and will have to put some thought into
whether you really want them to attend. Between you both, you might
find you have 4 sets of families to contend with and the last thing
you want is any type of friction between them.
The same applies to your friends. You will no doubt both have
friends that you shared good times with while you were with
previous partners. Talk to any such friends and see how they
feel about seeing you with somebody else and make it clear from the
onset that you don't want them, or yourself, to feel uncomfortable
in any way. Good friends will of course know this already and
be happy for you.
Inviting your previous partners may not really be that ideal.
Even if you do get on with them, it may cause confusion among some
guests and your new partner, or yourself could even feel to some
extent embarrassed in some way.
Second Marriage - Wedding Ceremony
Just like any other wedding, you can have your ceremony almost
anywhere you wish.
- Roman Catholic: Years ago the Roman Catholic religion would not
accept that a marriage conducted by a priest could be
dissolved. Therefore if you got married previously in the
Catholic Church it would under no circumstances allow you a second
If your previous marriage ended because of the death of your
spouse the church would accept this. In some cases the
clergyman may petition the church to have the previous marriage
that ended in divorce declared void, but only if the ceremony was a
civil one and not held in the church.
- Church of England: Before you make plans, go and talk to the
vicar of your respective church. If the vicar is willing to
hold the ceremony for you, he will have to approach the Bishop of
the diocese who makes the final decision.
- Jewish & Orthodox: The orthodox Jewish faith requires
divorced people to obtain a 'get' before they can remarry.
- Jewish & United (Reform): When both parties are
Jewish and there is documental proof of divorce, a Rabbi will
happily hold the ceremony.
- Jewish & Liberal: This is the modern Jewish religion
and the most relaxed. As long as both parties are Jewish,
plus have documents to support the divorce, a second marriage can
- Nonconformist, Methodists, Baptist and United Reform: Although
these churches take a more modern approach, it is still advisable
to check with the local vicar.
- Civil Wedding: This is probably one of the easiest
choices for your second wedding and with the vast selection of
venues it can be one of the more popular ones. Again, proof
of divorce will be needed.
If religion is important to you and you wish to have the religious
service, a blessing is similar to a traditional church
wedding. Even though you will already be married after having
had a civil marriage performed, you can still have the sincerity
and pageantry of a formal church wedding and take your vows
standing next to the alter.
Second weddings can also be held at registry offices and if you are
granted a licence you can get married anywhere from a castle to a
stately home, abroad or in your own home/garden; the choices are
endless. Getting a licence is not a certainty though.
Second Marriage - Children
There is a good chance that one or both of you will have children
from your previous relationships and it's important for everybody
concerned that the children are taken into consideration when you
are planning to get married again.
How you tell your children depends on your circumstances.
Getting married without your parents approval is one thing, getting
married without your children's acceptance can be painful and
Your child may feel that their other parent is being pushed even
further away so if you are on good terms with your previous
partner, it may be a good idea to have them there when you tell
your children that you are planning to get married again.
Young children need to have things explained to them and reassured
that whatever changes there are will not impact on their day to day
life, or their relationship with the parents in a way that they
would not want.
Having their help in the planning and giving them a role to play in
the day will make them feel they are being included with the
You can make them feel extra special by giving them roles such as
bridesmaid, flower girl, page boy or usher. If there is an
older male child, he could give you away or be best man.
The children together can be invited to light a candle at the
ceremony, making it a bonding and symbolic point for the joining of
the two families.
Second Marriage - Outfits
There is nothing written in stone that dictates what a second time
bride can or can not wear! The choice is entirely up to you
and how you want to dress.
If you feel you missed out on the big lavish wedding first time
around, you can now make up for this and have that dream wedding
you always wanted.
You may just want a quiet ceremony with close family and friends
around you or you may just want to fly away, just the two of you to
somewhere exotic and far away.
Remember to think of your partner if this is their first time
getting married, as they may want to go all out themselves by
wearing tuxedos or top hat and tails, and after all, it is their
If your partner points out things that you do not wish for, or
like, the last thing they really want to hear is things like 'I did
that last time', or 'we went there on our honeymoon'! Talk it
though with each other and be sensitive to each others needs and
wants. They want to know that they matter the most to you and
probably don't want to be reminded of your previous
Just because you have been married before does not mean you can not
wear a full wedding dress again! It's your day, wear what you
want. Some second brides leave out the veil but still go for
the tiara or flowers in the hair. Years ago it was frowned
upon if a bride wore white the second time around, but nowadays
many first-time brides' do not get married in white. The
colour of your dress is immaterial to what you want to wear.
If you don't feel comfortable wearing a wedding dress, you could
opt for a flowing trouser suit finished off with matching hat and
shoes. A cocktail dress with a fascinator in your hair or a
pair of jeans and a t-shirt!
If you are going for the smallish wedding, a posy of flowers can
offset any outfit. There are some beautiful wrist corsages
nowadays made from real or silk flowers if you do not wish to carry
Second Marriage - Reception
old brideYour reception can be as lavish or as simple as you
choose. If you decide to go for the sit down meal and you
have a table seating plan, you need to really think hard about
where to put everybody if there is to be family or friends from
your previous partners. More information can be found in our
Seating Plan article.
A buffet would help in these situations and take not only the
planning away from you and your partner, but may help in people
getting along at the reception. No matter if it's a first,
second or third wedding, seating plans can be a problem with trying
to ensure you seat those that get along and like each other, and it
seems nobody wants to sit next to Aunt Florence!
Second Marriage - Gifts
With this being your second wedding, you may already have set up
house together, or if not, chances are you will have separate
homes. Therefore, the last thing you want is to end up with
too many toasters or irons.
If you are inviting someone that attending your first wedding, they
may feel a bit put out that they now have to buy you another
wedding gift. You can either omit these people from your
wedding list (if you have one), or with them being friends and they
want to buy you a gift, you could ask these to buy something from
the lower price range.
You could, if you feel comfortable, ask for donations of money to
help towards a new room in your house or something large like a
washing machine or tumbler dryer. While some people like to
present you with a gift, there are others that are happy enough to
give you the gift of money. It's really up to you and if you
are happy to do this. Again, friends and family members are
usually happy to go along with your wishes and what you really
Your honeymoon, if you have one, can be turned into a family
holiday with the children of both partners. You may even wish
to delay your honeymoon until the children are fully settled into
life with their step parents. Once this occurs and you are
lucky enough to have somebody to look after your children, that
longed for time alone honeymoon can then be taken.
Above all, and for whatever the reason the main thing is that you
have a second chance at happiness and love. On your special
day, you will be sharing that happiness with your family and
friends and however you celebrate it, whatever you wear, wherever
you are and whoever is with you both, make that day one of those
ones that will be remembered for ever!