TIPS FOR DRESSING THE MOTHER OF THE BRIDE (AND GROOM)
Wedding bells ring and mothers-of-the-bride and groom rise to the occasion. They are usually the point man for their respective family. Over the past 8 years, I have learned so much about this group of our GGM customers. Because they are the glue that holds the wedding plans together through all the emotional ups and downs, they many times forget about planning for themselves. Here a few points that I hope will turn a dreaded shopping trip into an enjoyable experience:
- Talk to the bride - Open communication throughout this process is so important! Ask her the vision she has for the wedding (colors, formality, and style). Of course, the formality of the wedding will somewhat determine the length of the dress. However, be sure moms need to clarify this with the bride before purchasing. As a mom proceeds in search for the perfect dress, remember to keep those communication lines open.
- Consider the other mother – I think it is respectful to allow the mother-of-the-bride to choose her dress first. It may sound a tad on the old-fashion side, but it builds respect between the moms. If time is an issue, both moms need to have a conversation about their plans. It can set the tone for the future of the in-law relationship. I remember when my mother-in-law and mom went to dinner with me several months before the wedding. Discussing wardrobe choices, rehearsal dinner, and the overall wedding plans in a neutral, relaxing environment contributed to all of us getting along. Looking back, I think it truly helped my mom and my mother-in-law begin to build a genuine bond.
- Colors – Most brides have an opinion about what color the moms wear. Again, moms just need to ask the bride. The colors of the wedding will also help guide the way. Do not worry too much about the perfect color, just find a color that blends with the wedding colors and doesn’t stand out too much. Nevertheless, I believe it is important to take two other things into consideration: the mother’s skin tone and her photos. A mom needs to choose a color that best fits her skin tone and photographs well with the other members of the family (the main people you will be taking pictures with). Neutrals including navy, nudes, grays, and blush are common color choices right now.
- Style & location of wedding - From beaches and barnyards to chapels and cathedrals, wedding venues come in all shapes, sizes, and styles. Before a mom choices her dress, she should think about what fabric textures, weight, and colors would work best for the type of venue and climate.
- Time frame – This is one of the most common mistakes we see at GGM. Moms often think they can buy a dress off the rack. However, more often than not, a dress in a desired color and style has to be special ordered. Typically, special orders can take up to 12 weeks so moms should start approximately 4-6 months out.
- Comfort/ activity of the wedding - Dancing? Outdoor wedding? Beauty is sometimes a bit uncomfortable, but do not forget when choosing your attire and shoes that a mom must be standing and greeting much of the time.
- Accessories – Be careful not to overdo the accessories. It is always best to accentuate your beauty and not distract with accessories; however, I always love a good earring!
- Fit – I believe one of the worst mistakes a customer can make is not having the dress fitted properly. How awful it would be if a mom looks back on the wedding day photos and regrets not having the proper alterations done.
- The dreaded mother-of-the-bride/groom word, matronly! Mother’s dresses are often labeled as matronly. I promise there are many dresses available now to help a mom look chic but still appropriate.
- Your style and silhouette - Although moms need to consult the bride and other mother, be true to your style. Choose the best silhouette for your shape.
- Finally and most importantly, ENJOY the process! These are days that are filled with opportunities to make lifelong memories.