Dress Etiquette for the Groom's Mother

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Being the mother of the groom might carry more responsibility than you realize. You may need to help plan the event. In addition, your dress for the wedding can't be just anything you pick out of your closet. People are more laid back in the past few decades in regard to traditions, still you need to spend sometime planning what you'll wear to your son's wedding.

Mother of the Bride

Traditionally, the mother of the bride chooses her dress first and then the mother of the groom chooses hers so that the two dresses coordinate. While the rules regarding this custom aren't as set in stone as they used to be, for the sake of family pictures, it's nice to match your dresses in terms of style and color. Talk to the mother of the bride about what you'd like to wear and choose dresses that you'll both be happy with.


You don't want to wear white to your son's wedding because that's what the bride is wearing and you won't want to upstage her. At the same time, black isn't usually a good choice either. Go for muted or pastel colors that complement the bridesmaids' dresses, which is important for photos because you don't want the colors to clash. For example, if the wedding colors are silver and blue, you probably don't want to wear a pink dress. According to tradition, you shouldn't wear the same color as the mother of the bride either.


Much like the color of your dress, the style of your dress should also pair well with the style of the bride's mother's dress. It is not recommended for you to wear a short skirt if she's wearing a floor-length gown. The type of wedding your son is having will help dictate the style. For a formal evening affair, wear a tea or floor-length dress. For an afternoon, summer wedding that is less casual, a knee-length dress might be appropriate.


Nothing looks sillier in pictures than the groom's mom wearing a sleeveless dress at a winter wedding. For an outdoor, summer wedding, this might be OK, but for a cold-weather wedding, choose a dress with long sleeves or one that has a jacket or wrap. Not only will you stay warm, but the photos will look better. And, you can remove the wrap if you get hot while dancing and put it back on when you head outside after the wedding. A short-sleeve dress is fine for a warm wedding, though.