Are you a mother of the bride and concerned about the etiquette about the dress for wedding? Above all let us congratulate you at this important milestone in your life! Choosing a dress is definitely important part of every wedding and so important role brings some responsibilities too.
While the dressing code for ceremonies and receptions is much more loose these days than it used to be, few rules are still worth to consider. This way we'll avoid possible dilemmas and embarrassments and contribute our share to this once in a lifetime event. Everybody likes to look pretty, feel comfortable and possibly follow the fashion trends while not straying too far from the tradition. Let us help you to check the etiquette for mother of the bride dress and everything what comes with your decisions.
They don't compare a wedding with a stage production for nothing. It involves a full set of characters who all want to shine in best possible lights, but never at the expense of others and always with the main goal in mind - to produce a tasteful and memorable performance for everybody involved.
Mother of the bride has undoubtedly one of the most important roles. She wants to look best and she wants her daughter to look even better, so some coordination should be done. While wedding traditions are broken all the time, bride is still in the center of attention and everything else should be adapted to her wishes. Other variables are important too.
Is this a formal or casual wedding? Is there a particular theme to be followed? How detailed is bride's vision of the ceremony and the reception? Bride's gown dictates everybody else's, but the venue may have certain restrictions as well. Don't forget the decorations! What about the weather conditions? Is there maybe a second wife of bride's father involved? How to put the dress of mother of the bride with bridesmaids' dresses? How to politely inform mother of the groom about your decision?
Winning solution to all and many other possible problems lies in effective communication. With a healthy dose of diplomacy and humor everything could be solved with as low number of casualties as possible.
Weddings are not as white as they used to be, so old restrictions for the color for mother of bride dress don't apply anymore. White and it's closest relatives like beige, champagne, cream and ivory are still not among most favorable colors for the MOB (acronym for mother of the bride, see full list of wedding acronyms for more), but her selection is not limited to the pastels and wash outs.
While today's mothers of the brides can still choose pale and neutral tones, they can also opt for bolder colors, like purple or even black or red, if they are incorporated with enough taste and with an ear for the whole bridal party.
When you are wondering what color to for the mother of the bride's attire, it's always best start to talk with the bride. Even if she says she doesn't really care, her attitude will show how important is if matching of the outfits is important or not to her.
Classic Etiquette And How to Apply It To Present Times
Not so long ago rules were relatively clear, although not always easy to follow. Bride's mother had to choose her attire as soon as the date of the wedding was set. Right after that she informed the mother of the groom, but not directly, because this would look bossy and nobody likes aggressive people. A friend or good acquaintance should be used to proceed the message and mediate on details, like shoes, hairdo and accessories, if necessary.
Now many things are changed. some mothers of the bride and the groom establish so good relationship, they can go shopping for their dresses together. This is definitely the best way to synchronize the look of both mothers. They can also advice each other and such experience can easily grow into a friendship. On the other way, shopping for a dress can be very stressful, so it's not an experience we should aim at at all costs.
The most important rule which still apply today is to follow the formality of the event (this rule should be followed at all events, by the way). None of the members of bridal party should be underdressed or overdressed, what is true for all the guests as well. If anybody has to be consulted before the purchase of the attire, this is a bride. Dresses of bridesmaids are important too, but the role of the MOB is different (way more important, of course), so her dress should be different too.
If, for instance, a certain color scheme should be followed, both mothers and bridesmaids can dress in the same colors, but not in the same tones. There are also many ways to distinguish from others with accessories and jewelry. Very fashionable addition to weddings in recent years are hats and fascinators, which open whole new worlds of fashion statements. Classics like a pearl necklace and a pair of gauntlets are still very much to consider.
Another important purchase are shoes. They should be elegant and comfortable. Comfort has to be in mind at every decision, a wedding often lasts for more than half a day after all. For this reason many guests and especially members of wedding party select garments consisting of several pieces, so they can have more options available for different conditions. If, for instance, bare shoulders are inappropriate for the ceremony venue, they can be covered with a bolero jacket which could be easily put off at the reception in the open sunny place. Two pairs of shoes, one with higher, more elegant heels, and the other for dancing, could be a life saving decision as well.
Choosing an appropriate dress for the mother of the bride is not an easy task, but it can still be a fun experience. Tact, taste and thoughtfulness are the keys to success. Every single detail counts, from the length and color of the dress to the hosiery and the undergarment.
While every situation is different, for instance with divorced parents of the bride, local customs, family traditions etc., the main rules are always the same:
- Consider the formality of the event and a chosen bridal theme, if any. This dictates the length and color of the dress.
- Take into account your role in the wedding party. If you are, for instance bride's mother and her matron of honor at the same time, your attire should be a bit more accentuated than in case of being a step mother and 'only' one of the specials. By the way, step mother of the bride dress etiquette in general follows the dress code for 'regular' wedding guests.
- Communicate with the bride and the groom's mother. Being in tune with these two is a bare minum. If you manage to include bridesmaids and the groom, even better.
In any way, do your best and have fun. It's your daughter's wedding and one of the moments you should be happy for and proud of for many years to come!