top of page

9 Tips for choosing a fabulous Mother-of-the-Bride dress

Your daughter's/son’s wedding day is an exciting and joyous occasion in a mother's life. As the mother of a bride/son, you know you have to look your absolute best on their special day, as you will also be receiving attention at the big event. You will have to choose your outfit carefully, so it is appropriate for the wedding and brings out your best. There are many factors to consider when choosing your look. This includes putting together an outfit that complements the theme and style of the wedding, a dress that is fashionable and comfortable, and one that lets you stand out from the rest of the wedding party.

But don’t wait too long, either. It’s good to allow six months to find your dress, and about three months for any necessary alterations to be made. You’ll have enough to stress about as the big day approaches, so get your dress taken care of well in advance.

Let’s take a look at all these different aspects in greater detail, so here are a few tips on how to choose the perfect dress for this exciting milestone. 1. What Should the Mother of the Bride Wear to a Wedding?

Before you start shopping, the first step to dress shopping is to check-in with the bride. Choices that were once dictated by strict rules of ethics are now very much up to the couple tying the knot. The bride will usually have certain expectations so follow her cues on colour, style and formality. This will help you narrow down your options and ensure that you don’t look out of place in the wedding party. Former faux pas like wearing white (risking a clash with the bride), black (indicating mourning) or red (too flashy) are perfectly acceptable now, as long as you have the bride’s blessing.

2. Imitate the Wedding Theme Before you even set out to look for a dress; there are two things you should consider: the style of the wedding and the colours in it. The bride and groom usually have their mind set on a specific colour scheme and how formal the event will be, and plan everything around these. The wedding could be formal, casual or semi-formal, and the venue would be a location suitable for this choice. You can then look for a dress that allows you to adhere to the chosen theme, so your look goes well with the rest of the wedding party.

3. What about coordinating with the bridal party? A good compromise to coordinating the Wedding colour scheme is choosing a dress that compliments the bridesmaids’ gowns without matching them perfectly. If the bridal party is wearing royal blue, you could wear navy; if they’re in purple, look for a dress in lavender. Stay within the same colour spectrum for a harmonious look that’ll still set you apart.

4. Find colours that look best on you? Colour is an important factor when choosing a dress, as the right colour can instantly make you shine. You may like to explore different shades in hues to find one that works best for your complexion and hair colour. While selecting a dress you may want to choose to avoid colours like black and grey, but choose a similar shade -- think midnight blue or dark charcoal in place of black and champagne or silver instead of white. If you love bold hues but don’t want to call too much attention to yourself with overly bright colours, opt for a darker or lighter version like a deep burgundy or a soft rose instead of red.

5. Fashion and fit: Your personal preferences are just as important as the bride's, when choosing your dress. Find a dress that reflects your personality and taste. If you are more conventional or reactionary, then a traditionally styled long dress could be convenient. If you are a more contemporary or edgy dresser, then a dress with a little more flamboyance may be tea length. Nobody expects you to look matronly, so go with a stylish dress choice that is both age-appropriate and fashionable. By choosing the right silhouette, colour and pattern that enhances your complexion and flatters your best features, you will look and feel great. Also, don't overlook the need for alterations, as most dresses that aren't custom made will require at least a few alterations to fit you perfectly.

6. Choose a comfortable length: You should choose the length of your dress based on how formal the wedding is, where it is held and what length would be practical for you to carry. Light fabrics, short hemlines, floral patterns and brighter colours are generally suitable for daytime affairs. Full-length gowns in heavier fabrics, simple patterns are ideal for formal, night-time celebrations. The hemline should neither be too long nor too short. Knee-length is only suitable during the day and tea length or longer is usually appropriate for afternoon and evening. Ensure that you alter the dress hemline to the ideal length, and correct it based on the heel height you will wear on the day.

7. Consider the neckline and sleeve style: The neckline and sleeve length of your dress will impact your overall look. Make sure that the choices you make enhance your natural features to the most. The neckline of the dress decides which areas on your body are highlighted. Choose a style that is elegant and reflective of your general style of dressing. Whether you choose strapless, sleeveless or long-sleeve dresses, the chosen design should look flattering. For strapless and sleeveless necklines, it may be a good idea to accessorize with a beautiful shrug or shawl if you prefer to cover up your arms for part of the ceremony or to keep warm when necessary.

8. Function: As mother-of-the-bride/son you have a busy role at the wedding. Usually, you will be on your toes, attending to guests and running around, most of the day. So, the dress you choose should withstand all this strain and not wrinkle or look messy after a while. It should be a dress that is practical and comfortable, and one that will not restrict you in any way. It is equally necessary that you wear proper shape-wear that supports you and tucks in any unsightly bumps. This will also give you a better toned figure. Take the weather and religious customs into consideration, when choosing your outfit. A strapless dress may not be right for a church wedding, but it would be ideal for a casual event. Long gowns in heavy fabric like velvet may be better choices for weddings in winter, while you would be better off in lace or chiffon for a summer wedding.

9. Hair and accessories: Tastefully chosen accessories can enhance your overall look. So, pay close attention to your hair, makeup and accessories to add the finishing touches to your ensemble. Your makeup and hairstyle should work well with the colours and features of your dress. Aim for sophistication and elegance, by balancing out your dress with accessories. As a general rule, pair bold and flashy jewellery with simple dresses and simple accessories with dresses that have elaborate details. The jewellery you choose should also match the formality of the event. Best to keep your look classic and uncluttered. The accessories should allow you to stand out as the host, but not be too much that it is overwhelming.

Ready to Shop? For a huge range of mother of the bride/son looks, Forever Bridal & Formal is a locally owned boutique-style store offering an unbeatable selection of appropriate dresses. With flattering dress options in a variety of styles, lengths, fabrics and various design features, you will be spoilt for choice.

We suggest that you start your shopping early, so you have enough time to make your decision, shop for accessories and get the necessary alterations done. By getting the dress altered by our professional seamstress, you can make sure it matches your exact measurements. Alteration services also allow you to change the look of a dress, by adding straps to a strapless dress for support, raising or lowering the hemline and stitching cups into the dress if required.

Dress in top style and enjoy the attention you deserve at your daughter's or son's wedding by visiting Forever Bridal & Formal in Stafford, Brisbane. We’ve got the rest of the family covered too -- be sure to check out our complete selection of dresses for wedding guests, as well.

Call us today to find out how we can help you choose the dress you need to look a million dollars on that all-important day. Tel: 3175 4525 or email

Featured Posts
Recent Posts
Search By Tags
Follow Us
  • Facebook Basic Square
  • Twitter Basic Square
  • Google+ Basic Square
bottom of page