Friday, April 15, 2011

Step 48 - Decide on Mother's of Bride Day of Shopping

(4 Months to 6 Months before the Wedding)
After all the wedding party is squared away with the outfits that they will wear for the wedding, the attention now shifts to finding an outfit for the mother of the bride and mother of the groom.

If the bride's mother and the groom's mother don't live too far apart, the bride should arrange a day of shopping. The goal is for the mother's of the two families to get to know each other a little better, to show appreciation for rearing up the bride and the groom and for searching dresses for them to wear at the wedding.

First you want to identify a few stores to look at mother of the bride dresses. Yes, you can find mother of the bride dresses off of the internet, and maybe later you can go there but the primary goal is for the mother's to meet and connect. Wedding related websites show a few Mother of the Bride stores but not a lot compared to most other wedding categories. You want to look in bridal boutiques, department stores, formal wear shops, dress shops, outlet stores, and thrift shops.

The mindset is to have a fun day, maybe you will find a mother of the bride dress on the day and maybe you might not. If the mom's don't find a dress they like that day, they should get an idea on the type and style of dress to search and what types of fabrics they like.

If the bride's live too far apart, or their schedules prevent them from getting together, the bride should still plan a mother of the bride day of shopping. It's the bride's mom's responsibility to find a dress first. Once she finds a dress, she should inform the groom's mom the type of dress she purchased for the wedding. The goal is for both mom's to have a coordinated outfit. It may be wise for the moms to discuss types and colors of dresses beforehand, but it is traditional in the wedding process for the bride's mom to pick her dress first.

The recommended approach to buying dresses for the moms. If they are computer literate and have access to the internet, look on-line first to get an idea of dresses to buy and figure out what stores to visit. They go to the store, if they find a great dress, buy the dress. If they don't find a dress, then they should go back to search the internet or seek out other dress stores. There are pros and cons of store shopping versus online shopping. At a store you get fitted and you see the style and color of the dress and you feel the material. Online shopping there are more dresses and more colors to choose from, they tend to be less expensive but you might have a problem with the size and the materials might be different from what you were expecting.

When buying dresses for the mom's dress for the wedding, the dresses should not clash with the bride's dress or be a fashion faux pas. The bride's and groom's mom should consult with the bride on the dresses they should wear for the wedding. The dresses should not stand out and draw attention away from the bride and especially stand out in the wedding photography and videography. The mother's should avoid dresses in white, ivory, or champagne. They should also avoid dresses in black (suggests mourning) or red (considered flashy).

Mother of the bride and groom dresses should be a little conservative. Recommended colors include beige, pastel shades, lavender, silver, burgundy, and blue. Another idea is to wear a dress slightly different but coordinated to the bridesmaids. For example, if the bridesmaids dresses are baby blue, the mother's of the bride could wear a darker blue and a navy blue.

The mother's of the bride and groom's dresses should be comfortable and elegant. The style should be appropriate to their body types. The season of the wedding needs to be considered too. If it's a spring or summer wedding, lighter colors are more appropriate. A fall or winter wedding calls for a darker dress. Also consider the theme of the wedding, for example if the dress is renaissance, stick to the theme. The bride's and groom's moms should coordinate the length of the dress. Both of their hemlines should nearly be the same. If it's an evening gown style, both mom's dresses should hem near the floor, if they wear a shorter dress the hemlines should line just below the knee.

Before deciding on a dress, know what type of dresses are best for your body type. If you still have a sexy figure, you can flaunt it a little but don't overdue it, you don't want to make the bride uncomfortable and upstage the bride. Find out how the bride feels about an outfit, about half the brides are concerned what the moms wear and about half the brides could care less. If the mom has large hips, an A-line skirt is flattering. If the mom has flabby arms, a long sleeve dress or jacket may be the way to go. If the mom has a big bust or problem stomach area, a longer blouse or jacket and a multi-layered dress may look best.

Don't match up accessories until you have the dress. Find shoes that match well with the dress, maybe shoes that match up with the color. If you have a V-line blouse you may consider a necklace or colored pearls near the color of the dress. Also consider earrings that are near the color of your dress or silver or crystal earrings with a lighter color dress and gold earrings with a darker color dress. Same story with a hairpin or you can wear a color coordinated hat that nearly matches your dress. If it's winter, a short jacket or shawl can go with the dress. A Hillary Clinton style pantsuit is a possibility too.

In your search for the mother of the bride dresses, you want to understand the fabric types available. Most special occasion dresses are made of chiffon, georgette, silk or man-made silk, organza, or crepe. When you go shopping you gain an idea of what fabrics you like before considering shopping for a dress online. Even if you don't buy the mother of the bride at the store, get an idea from the local bridal or dress shops and learn the types of fabrics, their quality and texture. Also understand colors, what you see online may be a slightly different shade then when you receive the dress.

If you order online, you need to know your approximate size. Have yourself measured with a tape measure. your bust, waist, and hips over your under garments. Compare these numbers to the management's store size chart to get your bust size. If you are in between bust sizes, always take the size up, it's easier to take in a dress than to let it out. Online shopping are stocked with a wide variety of styles, sizes, and colors, more than a physical store and prices are pretty reasonable. Remember though, when you are shopping for a "special occasion" outfit online, the return policy tends to be more strict than for everyday clothing. Each store is different, check the return policy before make a decision.

On the mother's bride day of shopping, considering it's a fun day, consider going out to lunch or dinner in addition. If the budget is tight push more for the lunch. Be sure it's a lady's type of restaurant where the food served is a meal such as, quiche, salads, soups, wrapped sandwiches, pasta, etc. A luncheon that has a great lady's atmosphere. You could consider a breakfast place, a dessert place, or a tea house instead of a lunch place too! Just make sure the atmosphere is eloquent. You may consider a little gift for the mom's if it can fit into the budget, you can give as a present creams and candles, a bottle of perfume, or a nice cookbook, or a coupon for a day at the spa or maybe even a manicure or pedicure.

A little more about the mother of the bride in regards to the wedding. The mother of the bride is your good will ambassador for your wedding. A bride has to play her role at the wedding and cannot be on top of everything that is going on at her wedding. The mother of the bride has to be the one gently overseeing that the wedding is going according to plan. The mother of the bride is responsible for reaching out in wedding planning with the groom's mother and the maid-of-honor. Needs to be the one who takes the initiative in making contact for the bridal party and information exchanges.

The mother of the bride needs to coordinate matters with the officiant, needs to be there to attend and oversee that everything goes right at the rehearsal dinner, be there to help if needed such as stuffing and stamping the wedding invitations, help wrapping the wedding favors, makes sure the wedding vendors such as the photographer, is doing his/her job properly and the cake cutting is done on cue. The mother of the bride is the first person in line to introduce wedding guests in the reception line, as the wedding couple greets each of the guests. These tasks should be performed proudly and as a sense of happiness for their daughter and not be viewed as a working task.

Hopefully, the bride can pull together a day of shopping and fun for the mother's of the bride and groom and make it a special day in which they will always remember.

See you on the other side!

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