Mother Of The Bride Dressing

Mother Of The Bride Dressing

Everyone knows it’s the bride’s day, but moms of the bride and groom are also honoured members of the wedding party.

There are some easy tips to help you select a suitable dress that takes you from ceremony to photos to the reception.

First, match the theme and style of the wedding. You can’t arrive in a long, formal gown to a backyard informal wedding. Similarly, a short dress is inappropriate for a black tie wedding.

Second, know your own style personality. If you never wear dresses and are not comfortable in them, then look at palazzo pants with chiffon overlays or embellishments.

Third, don’t outshine the bride. A little sparkle is ok; head to toe sequins is over the top. You can accent a simple dress with gorgeous jewelry that reflects your style. Remember, choose one area as a focus, such as a statement necklace or chandelier earrings. Don’t overdo it.

Fourth, find a colour that goes with the bridal colours, but isn’t an exact match. After all, you don’t want to compete with the bridesmaids. If the bride has chosen blue, for example, a lovely deep navy would be an excellent complement. Don’t wear white or ivory – that’s still a no-no at weddings. Black can work if the wedding is very formal. If not, stick to a deeper shade of the bridal colours, or neutrals like taupe, navy or grey. Metallic colours, like bronze or silver, can also be very sophisticated, but make sure to tone down accessories.

Lastly, be fabulous!

There are lots of great selections available that look neither prom-like nor frumpy. Don’t be afraid to try a sleeveless dress; you can always pair it with a little bolero jacket or wrap if you’re concerned about your arms. Many styles, including one shoulder and halter, are surprisingly flattering, even on mature arms.

Tea-length dresses are having a moment, as are portrait collars, which are more sophisticated than off-the-shoulder.

Make sure your hair and makeup complements your overall look – but that you still look like you. Some makeup artists use a ‘heavy hand’ or insist on false eyelashes, even if you’re not comfortable with them. If you don’t normally wear makeup, even a little can be a lot. Make sure you get what you want.

The wedding lasts a day, but the photos are forever, so make sure you’re comfortable and confident on the big day.


Sue Heuman is an Edmonton-based image consultant and author of, a fashion blog for mature women.