5 Tips for Finding Your Perfect Mother of the Bride Dress!

Beautiful Mother of the Bride Dresses!

Finding the mother of the bride and mother of the groom dresses for a wedding can either be a really pleasant experience or…not. Below, I’m sharing a few tips to help you get through the process with as little stress as possible! Plus, I’ve picked a couple of great options for the MOB or MOG. At the very least, these can give you inspiration!

Looking for the perfect wedding guest dress? Make sure you check out this post!

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Keep scrolling to find more details on each of the dresses above. But first…here are a few tips to help you find the perfect mother of the bride dress! There are a lot of traditions, rules, and social faux pas associated with weddings. The best thing for everyone involved is to have open communication between the bride, groom, MOB, and MOG!

Tip #1 | Don’t Procrastinate

You should never wait to shop for any event that’s important. But especially your MOB/MOG dress! Waiting causes anxiety and you end up picking something you don’t really love because you feel like you’re running out of time.

Another tip: Traditionally, it’s kind of the MOG to wait until the MOB has her dress picked out first. Make sure you give her plenty of time too! But if it’s really coming down to the wire, make sure you’re taking care of yourself too! 😉

Tip #2 | Discuss “The Vision” with the Bride

I know mother-daughter dynamics are different for everyone and can be fragile. Before you start shopping, ask the bride what she’s envisioning so that you’re both on the same page. If your mother-daughter relationship is tricky, try to make dress shopping together something fun. Plan a day that the two of you will get brunch, have a drink, talk about what you both want, share Pinterest inspiration, and then go shopping together!

Another option: Order a bunch of dresses online, try them on at home, pick your favorite (with the bride) and return the ones that didn’t work!

Tip #3 | Color Coordination

There are traditions that some people follow regarding color coordination with the wedding party. Some people say that the MOB dress should be either one shade darker or one shade lighter than the bridesmaid dresses. Some brides care about this and some don’t…but you need to ask! If you want to follow the traditional rules, color coordinating is something to keep in mind and might make your shopping experience even easier because the color is already decided for you!

Tip #4 | Be Nice!

This tip if for the bride AND the MOB…

To The MOB: If you’re not used to shopping for special occasion dresses, you’re not where you want to be with your weight goals, or you’re just nervous about finding the right dress, that’s completely normal! This might be a stressful shopping experience for you, but make sure you remain calm, patient, and open to feedback. If you find yourself getting frustrated while you’re shopping/trying on, take a break. Don’t take any frustration out on the bride.
To The Bride: Some moms hate shopping. Especially for special event dresses. And finding a dress for your mom is just as important to her as it was for you to find yours. Be supportive and offer your more filtered feedback. Your mom is a superhero and does everything for you…be nice to her!

Tip #5 | Timing

You should try to time your shopping trip right. If the wedding is in the spring, spring styles won’t be out until after the holidays (at the earliest). If the wedding is in the fall, you’ll probably be able to find a few fall styles by the end of August. Which doesn’t give much time for alterations, finding accessories, and giving the MOG time too! So make sure you either shop early OR go for something classic that doesn’t need to be “in season.”

Bonus Tip | Plan for Alternations

With many special occasion dresses, the fit is not going to be perfect. The hemline might be too long, the neckline might be too low cut, or a certain part of the dress may fit perfectly while another part is too big or small. You can get all of that fixed! Make sure you factor alternations into your dress budget.

Are there any helpful tips you have for future mothers shopping for MOB and MOG dresses? Please share in the comments below!

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Gorgeous Green

This turquoise blue/green color is on-trend for this year and beautiful on all skin tones. The one-shoulder is really flattering if you have broad shoulders. And the jacquard metallic fabric looks so luxe!

Pretty in Purple

Lavender is another popular color right now. But this dress also comes in a beautiful blush pink color. I love the dramatic ruffled shoulder and flattering A-line silhouette.

Simple But Elegant

Halston makes gorgeous gowns that are simple but elegant. This bright pink dress has beautiful draping and a cool knotted shoulder detail.

Fuchsia Beauty

If you’re a subscriber, you know how much I love pink! This pink satin gown has a flattering v-neckline and embellished belt that really cinches in the waist. It also comes in green!

Rosy Metallics

How pretty is this Bronx & Banco gown!? The rosy metallic color is so pretty. I love the cinched waist details, blouson sleeves, and leg slit!

Flattering Wrap Dress

This is a more casual MOB option but still just as beautiful. It’s a wrap-style dress so it’s SUPER flattering. You could even wear this as a wedding guest!

Beautiful Satin

This Cinq a Sept dress is another more toned-down option if you’re not interested in wearing a full-on gown to the wedding. The fabric is really pretty and it’s very lightweight.

Chic Cocktail Dress

If you’re going with cocktail attire, this is another great option! I love the midi length and pretty embroidered fabric.

Classic Navy

You can never go wrong with a classic little blue dress. This dark navy gown is one you can wear again and again and it will never go out of style!

Modest but Chic

If you want a classic, elegant, and modest black dress, this is the one! Your arms will be covered by the chic puff sleeves, your decolletage is covered by the elegant lace on the chest, and the lace panel on the back gives the dress a twist.

Romantic Florals

If you’re a fan of prints, this is a beautiful option. The embroidered floral is the perfect amount of understated!

Bring on The Drama!

Normally I wouldn’t recommend drama at a wedding…but like I always say, I like drama in my clothes, not my life! And this Monique Lhuillier gown definitely brings the drama! I love the ruffle details, flattering empire waist, A-line silhouette, flounce skirt, and one-shoulder neckline…it’s all so gorgeous!
How To Manifest Anything, Fashion blogger Erin Busbee of Busbee Style wearing an orange and blue Staud Ina dress with white sunglasses walking around in Telluride, Colorado
Erin Busbee
After a decade in TV news, a desire to help women "look pretty" sparked a career pivot. I started my own wardrobe consulting business, styling "real" women for many years. In 2014, I changed direction again, using my TV background and styling expertise to launch this website and my YouTube channel. We are now a community of nearly 700,000 dynamic, vibrant, amazing women over 40... who know that age isn't something you need to hide from. For us, life is just getting started!!
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7 thoughts on “5 Tips for Finding Your Perfect Mother of the Bride Dress!

  1. I love your ideas and style!!! I met you last summer by the falls when you were taking photos. I work at telluride academy in the summer a few weeks every summer. will you Please give some ideas on cute hiking outfits? i always feel so plain and boring while i am teaching. My son is getting married in August at the peaks, so I will be looking closely at your ideas of possible dresses.
    I hope to run into you again…..thank you

    1. Yes… I’ve been wanting to do some hiking options. Great idea… and i hope to bump into you again too!! Erin xo

  2. Well the limelight is always on the Bride and right so it should be, and then there are the Bridesmaids but the mother of the bride is somehow sidelined :P. The dresses in the blog are going to bring the glamour for The Mother of the Bride”.

  3. Five years ago, I was the MOB, and did the traditional shopping in stores. I loved my dress (a black carmen marc valvo gown) but it was $1100 from saks, not including alterations. This year I am the mother of the groom, and i used the internet. i ordered ten dresses from 5 different retailers (after checking their return policies). once they all arrived, I tried them all on in the comfort of my own home. i took selfies, sent to my daughters for their opinions (my son said “whatever you like is fine!). And i found my perfect dress! a dark blue Tahari gown. and the best part? only $97!!! from saks off 5th. gotta love online shopping!!!

  4. Hi there! My dayghter was married at the end of December and i found 6 BEAUTIFUL gowns at Lord and Taylor that were much cheaoer than some of your options here. Most less than $200 and many of the styles you are highlight Were available. I wore #8 in Emerald green velvet and felt wonderful.

    I question the very light beige dresses on this list. I would think i was competing with the bride’s look.

    Great advice here!

  5. Although it has been a few years nOw i remember shopping for my dress for my son’s wedding. My #1 tip Hands down is don’t go into a store/shop asking for a mob or mog dress. What i was shown was so old and matrOnLy looking. I found my perfect dress in The bridesmaid seCtion. I feLt beautiful and sTylish!

    1. Aww Sandy I can soooo relate to your comment. Exact same experience here. I shopped every bridal shop and department store and all I found toooo were dresses that would be wonderful for my Grandmother And the size….all for larger women. I was 69 at the time of my son’s wedding. I started looking online and i found my dress at new york dress company…beautiful Gown…, the customer service was amazing and I received a Ton of compliments ..even was told “I should be a model” ( that made my day ). Now, the only problem i have now is what should I do with it? Any ideas? It is a total shame to wear it once and what? I
      I totally enjoy allllll of Erin’s blogs…thank you for listening..

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