Photo: Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images
Whether you want to say "I do" all over again because you've found wedded bliss or you simply need a reason to throw yourself a party, you have a lot of fashion leeway when it comes to renewing your vows. Still, to keep this public display of affection from turning cringe-worthy, it's best to show your guests that you don't need to resurrect the big white gown to have a good time.
Not Your Wedding Day
If you're renewing your vows, you're already married, so it's best to set those fairy tale dreams of a wedding day do-over aside. No matter how badly you want to right old wedding wrongs, styling yourself after a blushing bride will look more like a desperate bid for attention than an honest celebration of everlasting love. Skipping the wedding dress and heading in a new direction will send the message that you're recommitting for all the right reasons.
To White or Not to White
Traditionally, white is the symbol of purity and innocence -- traits people tend to associate with first-time brides.That said, the rules of vow renewal are pretty loose, and the fashion police won't make a citizen's arrest if you opt to wear white. The trick to pulling it off is to do white without veering into bridal territory. So skip the frou-frou lace and baubles that define a traditional wedding dress and aim for a simple elegance that befits a woman with a little marriage under her belt.
A long and/or happy marriage is a real accomplishment in this day and age, so go ahead and take your style to the max if you want. After all, you're the hostess, the guest of honor and the main attraction all rolled into one (okay, two). A floor-length gown with plenty of grown-up glitter and glam is perfectly appropriate if you're dying to fly your princess flag. Or if you just want to show you've still got it, a knee-length cocktail-style dress that hugs your curves will also work. Just keep in mind that, whether you go formal or less so, it's always best to try and match your level of dress to your companion.
If you want to renew your vows without making a big fuss, you can go with a blouse and skirt combo or an elegant pantsuit. Going low-key is a good idea for a daytime event, as it's likely your guests will also take a more casual approach. And if you really are a jeans and tee type gal at heart, there's nothing wrong with showing your true colors. After all, if your spouse is willing to do it all over again, then you must be doing something right.
Accessorizing for a vow renewal is all about putting your shared history on display for everyone to see. So drape yourself in sentimental favorites from birthdays past and don't be afraid of going over the top. Now is the time to show your beloved that you didn't actually hate that ginormous pearl brooch...you just never had the occasion to wear it (until now!).