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Always the Bridesmaid, Never the Bride

Updated on October 8, 2014

Playing Second Fiddle

The term "always the bridesmaid, never the bride" is an idiom. It refers to someone who never quite attains the most important slot or to being second fiddle.

In other words, it describes someone who basically coming in in second place. This phrase doesn't just pertain to just women who have never been a bride themselves.

The bride in this vintage photograph has five bridesmaids playing second fiddle. Doesn't she feel special?

Photo Credit: The Graphics Fairy

Always the bridesmaid, never the bride...

used to talk about someone who is never

the most important person in a situation.

"Huw worked with a host of great actors, but somehow was always the bridesmaid, never the bride."

~The Free Dictionary

"If someone is always a bridesmaid, never a bride, they never manage to fulfill their ambition -- they get close, but never manage the recognition, etc., they crave"

~ Using English

Always the Bridesmaid - A Documentary

The movie Always the Bridesmaid is a documentary by Nina Davenport. She is a wedding videographer whose boyfriend won't ask for her hand in marriage. She sets out to interview woman who never married and find out how to make sense of her own feelings about love and marriage.

According to Amazon reviewer cutiepie24: "I saw this documentary in a theatre when it showed in NY and remember being so impressed with what the filmmaker had been able to do. She wove her own personal story into the broader story of other womens' lives, and marriage in general, and it made for a really interesting movie. Some of the moments she captured (like a birthday party for her boyfriend where his ex-girlfriend was also there) were just fascinating. Totally worthwhile to see this movie."


Have you ever been a bridesmaid? How often?

See results

27 Dresses - Talk About Always Being the Bridesmaid!

Affiliate Disclosure

This author, Peggy Hazelwood, participates in Amazon, eBay, All Posters, and other affiliate advertising programs. When you click an advertising link on this page and make a purchase, I receive a small percent of the sale. Thank you for reading this far!

Not a Bridal Registry - Just let us know you stopped by.

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    • gottaloveit2 profile image


      6 years ago

      I can't for the life of me figure out why I'd want to be anything BUT a bridesmaid ever again! No marriage for me - no siree.

    • Pam Irie profile image

      Pam Irie 

      7 years ago from Land of Aloha

      27 Dresses was a fun movie. The character totally fit the title of this lens. Now I can't wait to see the movie, "Bridesmaids". I hear it's the female equivalent to "The Hangover". lol


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