With guests eager see what everyone is wearing, the mother of the bride needs an outfit that’s both stylish and classy for her daughter’s wedding. Here are our top mother of the bride dresses and outfit ideas to buy now for summer and autumn weddings.
[words by Tabitha Syrett]
Mother of the Bride Outfits for Autumn 2022
Being mother of the bride and chief of the bridal party, we understand that you’ll want to highlight your role with the right look with a mother of the bride dress that’s not frumpy – and doesn’t just look like another wedding guest dress. So, we’ve compiled a guide to the best mother of the bride outfits and trends for autumn 2022.
HOBBS Helena Silk Floral Midi Dress, £299
This gorgeous dress, with its long sheer sleeves, demure floral print and sweeping fit and flare shape simply exudes class. It’s subtle enough not to hog the limelight, but dress it up with the right fascinator and you’ll have admiring glances aimed at the mother of the bride all day.
Mint Velvet Yellow Lace Midi Dress, £189
Bring a splash of summer warmth to your daughter’s big day in this yellow dress, which will epitomise the joy of the occasion. It’s bright and chirpy, but with the addition of that intricate lace and figure hugging form, it’s also regal. Pair it with some understated heels and a clutch.
ASPIGA Victoria Broidery Collar Dress, £200
Get whimsical with this stunningly feminine dress. Its vibrant colour will ensure you stand out from the other wedding guests, while its long-flared skirt, adorable collar and fitted bodice lend it a refined old-world charm. The cotton broderie is sustainably sourced, so you can feel good while you look good.
REISS Layla Sleeveless Bodycon Dress, £198
A mother of the bride couldn’t really be more on point when wearing this stylish green dress. Its figure-hugging lines, gathered waist and crew neckline are classic, and partnered with a black fascinator and black heels, you’ll be the chicest in attendance.
AW Romula Dress, $89.99
This is the perfect MOB outfit in a gorgeous satin charmeuse fabric and beautiful jewel neckline – with a handy built in bra to boot.
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GHOST Elora Dress in Dark Burgundy, £145
This dress makes for the perfect transitional piece between a classy evening wedding in the summer (with some statement gold jewellery thrown in) and an autumnal celebration.
Monsoon Maxine Shirt Dress in Green, £140
Perfect for a spring or summer wedding, look elegantly pastoral in this embroidered green dress. It can be easily dressed up with a gorgeous pair of heels and a magnificent big hat!
Gina Bacconi Emeline Jacquard Tailored Dress in Pale Pink, £350
Channel simple sophistication and poise in this tailored pale pink dress and jacket. Its clean-cut silhouette and jacquard print flatter all forms and keep you cool in the summer heat, making you the kind of mother that any glowing bride would be proud of on her wedding day.
Jigsaw Portofino Linen Blazer and Trouser, £200 and £125
This edgy pink suit is just right for all weathers and endlessly versatile. You’ll be the trendiest MOB there is.
Harvey Nichols Bernadette Maddie Floral-print Taffeta Maxi Dress, £825
Go all out in this sweeping floral print gown – the perfect Mother of the Bride outfit for both evening weddings and summer day-time weddings.
Monsoon Caterina Maxi Dress, £75
This embellishment on this gorgeous dress adds a touch of magic perfect for any wedding.
Gina Bacconi Lariah Chiffon Overlay Shift Dress, £260
The ruche detailing of this beautiful drape dress will flatter your figure, while the pop of pink colour will ensure you stand out from the rest of the wedding guests.
John Charles Dress, Style 66113, Price in Store
This mother of the bride outfit channels pure femininity. Clean lines and a shaped waist make this a timeless and elegant mother of the bride dress with a flattering silhouette.
Mother of the Bride Accessories
Think about jewellery, shoes and handbags – all things that can help make your mother of the bride outfit unique. Use these as statement pieces, perhaps in a brighter colour than the rest of the outfit.
Hobbs Freya Fascinator, £79
Leather Lexi Sandals, £159
Emerald Satin-Georgette Zara Shawl, £69
Mother of the Bride Outfit Guide
In years gone by, being mother of the bride has meant frumpy frocks and ill-fitting dress suits, but no more! With many modern mums keeping on top of fashion trends, lots of high street retailers and even wedding designers are now catering for fashionable mother of the bride big-day looks.
To help provide some guidance for future MOB’s on how they can stand out from the crowd and wow those wedding guests, Kirsten Emery, Head of Design at leading fashion e-tailer Kaleidoscope, shares her top tips for mother of the brides this wedding season.
Modern Mother of the Bride Style Tips
Flatter Your Figure
Today’s mother of the bride collections consist of figure-flattering frocks that are designed to accentuate your mum’s best bits. Is your mum worried about showing her upper arms on the big day? Look for cinched-in jackets that will not only hide her wobbly bits, but also help her change her look from day to night.
Pair with some sexy shoes and some matching accessories and you’ll have a confident mum that will look picture perfect. A good figure flattering tip is to choose a dress style with a ribbon tied or belted waist which will cinch you in and accentuate the narrowest part of your frame.
Also, remember that sophistication is key, so keep your outfit demure by avoiding any ensembles that are too low cut or have a short hem. Many women are concerned about exposing their upper arms. Experimenting with three quarter length sleeves, cover-ups and looking for cinched in jackets will keep you feeling confident and can help add some variety to your look.
Let the Bride be Your Guide
Another important tip for dressing for your daughter’s big day is to let her bridal style guide you. Before you start your outfit search make sure you are aware of the colour palettes for the day, flower arrangement ideas, how formal the occasion is going to be, and what the bridesmaids will be wearing.
As mother of the bride, you may want to find a look which complements these elements, without being matchy-matchy. For instance, if the bridal party are wearing soft duck egg blue, select a subtle mocha or grey which you can team with duck egg blue accessories without looking too try-hard. It’s important you still find something you feel confident wearing and that reflects your own individual style.
Aside from this, the classic golden rule for keeping the bride happy, unless otherwise instructed, is to never wear white or any colour close to what the bride has chosen to wear – that hue is for the bride and the bride only!
Be Inspired by Celebrity Mother of the Bride Outfits
Although of course your bride is your guide, there is no reason you can’t take inspiration from most stylish MOB’s from the celebrity world. Carole Middleton and Judy Murray are great examples of how to perfect the structured look; a well-fitted coat over a shift dress can add an extra twist to your outfit, and keep you warm during the winter wedding season.
Although Carole has stuck with a simple outfit, she lets the hat do the talking. This can be an elegant way of ensuring you stand out as MOB without going too over the top.
Think of an Outfit to Last From Day to Night
Weddings are notorious for being very long days so make sure whatever you are wearing is comfortable enough so that it doesn’t distract you from enjoying your daughter’s big day! Opt for non-creasing, moveable fabrics such as scuba or lace, teamed with stylish but practical shoes for that added touch of glamour.
If the wedding moves throughout the day into the evening also ensure that you have a wrap/pashmina on hand to keep you warm. Go for a colour that complements or adds drama to your dress or accessories. The most important thing to remember is that many eyes will be on you for your daughter’s big day so ensure that you are confident, happy and comfortable in your attire, with plenty of movement in your dress so that you are free to dance the night away!
Consider the Wedding Location
When first starting to plan your mother of the bride outfit, look to the wedding location itself for inspiration. If you’re attending a beach wedding or one in a warmer climate, go for minimum accessories and flowing fabrics, adopting a more relaxed style.
For a more formal occasion, take the opportunity to make a bold statement by wearing an eye-catching headpiece or fascinator. When choosing a headpiece accessory make sure you don’t detract from your outfit as a whole, it should accentuate your look instead of dominating it.
It’s important to ensure that any head pieces don’t swamp your frame, and doesn’t hide your face. Finally, make sure that you opt for a colour which complements your dress or matches the rest of your accessories. This will complete your outfit and bring it together as a whole.
Should the Mother of the Bride Wear a Hat?
You may think it’s customary for the mother of the bride to wear an over-sized hat, but that’s simply not the case for 2022. Many modern mums are opting to leave the traditional hats at home in favour of something a little smaller, such as a fascinator, statement flower in the hair or stunning hair accessories.
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