“I know my job. Show up, shut up and wear beige.”
A gem of a quote from Lauren Conrad’s mother-in-law as she chose an outfit to fall in seamlessly with LC’s dreamy neutral wedding tones.
While we’re not saying mothers of the bride (and groom) need to shut up, or indeed wear beige, we do think it’s nice for you to include them, and their outfits, in the overall look of your wedding – after all, they’re a pretty important person at the party, and they deserve to look, and feel like a VIP!
So, given that it’s Mothers’ Day in the US this weekend, we thought it was the perfect time for a wedding style guide for modern moms.
Dressing for your son or daughters’ wedding is a difficult balancing act. You want to look and feel beautiful, glamorous and sexy, while still being age, and occasion, appropriate.
You’re going to be photographed a lot on the day too, so it’s good to look for something that will be flattering in pictures as well. (This sounds harder than shopping for a wedding dress!)
Mother of the bride outfits are traditionally a little dowdy (and boring!) but we’re here for the stylish mums who want to let the bride shine on the day, but still look and feel really special too.
Gorgeous Buys for Stylish Mothers
Clockwise from Top Left: Blue dress, Coast // Box Clutch, Coast // White Skirt, Lanvin via The Outnet // Cape, Ted Baker via John Lewis // Red Clutch, Michael Kors via House of Fraser // Nude Pumps, Dune via House of Fraser // Nude and White Dress, Phase Eight // Pearl Earrings, John Lewis // Red Blazer, Phase Eight // Brown Pump, Phase Eight // White Trousers, Coast // Red and Cream Dress, Phase Eight // Beaded Purse, Phase Eight // White Blazer, Phase Eight // White Hatinator, House of Fraser // Floral Pumps, Rainbow Couture via John Lewis //Floral Dress, Valentino via The Outnet // Black Applique Hatinator, House of Fraser // Blue Necklace, Coast // Sequin Cover-up Top, Coast // Blue Pumps, Dune via House of Fraser // Champagne Lace Dress, Gina Bacconi via John Lewis // Black and Gold Pendant Earrings, Ben-Amun via The Outnet // Blue Earrings, Phase Eight.
Mother of the Bride Trends
So many gorgeous buys, right? We’ve seen a real trend in the U.S. towards mothers of the bride and groom wearing full length, gown-style dresses – BHLDN have some gorgeous options.
Here in the UK, cropped blazers and cool florals are increasingly popular (Ted Baker do some really modern florals), while the traditional hat is still a staple. We love the idea of swapping a jacket for a cape for some seriously chic Jackie O vibes.
While fascinators are most definitely out, hatinators have been cropping up on catwalks and at racing events, for a statement hat look, that still shows off your face.
Five Expert Tips for Modern Mother of the Bride or Groom
Photo via The Outnet
Given that choosing what to wear to to your son or daughter’s wedding is such a tricky task, we thought it was about time we brought in an expert.
Eve Thomas, is an all-round stylish lady, and Fashion Director at The Outnet (which is a sister site of Net-a-Porter, and an absolute treasure trove of super chic discounted designer attire – seriously, bookmark it!)
She’s well versed in guiding guests in the ways of dressing for weddings, so who better to lend us her top tips for modern mothers of the bride?
1. Complement the Bride
While mother of the bride outfits are getting more glamorous and less mumsy, there’s a fine line between rocking a gorgeous gown, and looking like you’re vying for a spot at the altar.
Make sure your colours sit well with the rest of the bridal party, so you don’t stick out in the photos, but do be careful to choose a different style of dress to the bride and the bridesmaids.
Eve says: Avoid bright colours and instead opt for sparkling neutrals such as champagne, dove grey and silver. You should aim to complement the bride rather than overshadow her.
2. Switch Up a Suit
Photo via Coast
A dress and blazer combo is the mother of the bride/groom staple, and while it can make a gorgeous go-to, you might like to wear something a little less predictable.
Eve says: Tailoring works well for more mature frames and looks more modern than a dress.
Pair a skirt or a pair of wide-leg pants with a jacket in a complementary colour rather than a more traditional matching two-piece suit.
3. To Hat or Not To Hat
It’s the eternal question isn’t it! Whether it’s a less formal wedding or not, remember, you can always opt for a chic updo or blow-dry instead.
If you do opt for a hat, try lots on, and take plenty of pictures from all angles to ensure you’re choosing a style that flatters your face – the last thing you want, is to look back at the photos and hate how your hat looked on the day.
Look to the likes of Kate Middleton (a seasoned and chic hat wearer!) for inspiration.
Eve says: Don’t feel that you have to wear a hat simply because you are the mother of the bride. If you feel uncomfortable in one then it is best to go without. That said, if you enjoy wearing hats, embrace it.
Either way, don’t be tempted by a fascinator. It is neither one thing nor the other.
4. Footloose and Fancy Free
Photo via The Outnet
Finding chic shoes for mature feet can be a tough job at the best of times, but thankfully the trend for five inch stilettos is starting to pass. Practical shoes are officially back in fashion!
If you don’t normally wear heels, don’t feel pressured to wear them on the big day. Oh and even if you’re wearing flats, be sure to break them in the weeks before the wedding.
Eve says: Bear the location in mind when choosing your footwear. Summer weddings often take place on a lawn, so choose a wedge or elegant flat to avoid your heel getting stuck in the grass.
5. Attention to Detail
Photo via The Outnet
Here’s the part where you get to have all the fun; the accessories!
You can really make a statement with your accessories to amp up a plain ensemble, or use a key piece to tie the rest of your look together. Do invest a little time choosing your accessories as they can a classic outfit a really modern polish.
Eve says: Plan your look from head to toe – a delicate clutch bag and a piece of bold jewellery will add the perfect finishing touches.
So many great tips and elegant ideas. Are you any closer to finding the perfect outfit to your son and daughter’s big day?
If you’re a bride or groom, don’t forget to pass this on to your mom for inspiration.
And of course, for all the moms celebrating this weekend, (and the ones in the UK who deserve a treat either way!) Happy Mothers’ Day!
50 special Motherly Moments to capture on your wedding day.