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The internet sides with mom’s ‘inappropriate’ dress on daughter for wedding

Wedding outfit? Or beachwear? A recent article on Mumsnet sparked a huge debate over whether a woman should wear a pink dress to a wedding.

The post, which drew more than 200 comments, asked if an off-the-shoulder style embroidered dress would be appropriate for a wedding guest. User confusionmummy123 wrote that she was attending a wedding in a few weeks, spotted “a gorgeous bardot dress” and asked various family members and friends what they thought.

“[I] Loved it my fiancé loved it so ordered it and love it in real life too,” confusion123 wrote. “I don’t like it for a wedding ‘say why or more?’

The user then asked if she would “break some kind of etiquette” and noted that she was “[c]ignorant of these things.”

A file photo shows a mother and daughter smiling together in a bridal shop. A post on Mumsnet sparked a debate over whether a woman should wear a pink dress to a wedding.
iStock/Getty Images Plus

“Most of the weddings I’ve attended too, I’ve been the bridesmaid or the bride and have no idea how the guests dressed,” she wrote. “I remember a wedding a few years ago where I wore a red polka dot dress. I don’t know if that violated the rules of etiquette. I think that mother likes that dress though!”

It turns out that wedding etiquette is pretty important to the majority of Mumsnet users.

“Too informal and should be longer (if we’re going with wedding-appropriate dress etiquette).” writes Kat1953. “If the wedding takes place in a religious place of worship, then strictly speaking the shoulders must be covered.”

Rather presciently, Kat1953 added, “Now wait for the wedding attire etiquette debate :)”

She wasn’t wrong. Duracellbunnywannabe chimed in, “It’s a bit informal. Where’s the wedding? Shoulders should be covered in a church in general.”

Similarly, Squiff70 replied, “I’m a firm believer in women dressing how they want, but it’s not really wedding attire. It’s a pretty dress but more suited to a beach vacation than on a formal occasion.”

@RosesAndHellebores wrote: “This is a totally inappropriate operation.”

FairyCakeWings added that for a church wedding, it would be “considered rude” to wear a dress that was too short or had bare shoulders. “Even though it’s not a church, the tradition overflows,” the user wrote.

Others, however, told mum confused123 that if she likes the dress, she should wear it, to hell with traditions!

Firefightres1 wrote, “Gorgeous dress! Why ask your mom, we have very different styles.”

Similarly, KitBumbleB replied, “Wear it if you like it. Surely it’s better for your wallet and your planet to buy a dress that you’ll wear again.”

And these comments weren’t just coming from young people. Gonnabegrandma admitted, “I have to relax in my old age.”

“If you like it and feel comfortable, wear it. You’re probably young and pretty, have fun and don’t worry about other people’s opinions,” the user wrote.

Some users added that if it’s a slightly more casual non-religious wedding, she should go ahead with her plan. Confusedmummy123 later commented, “It’s not a church wedding.”

“I love someone telling me I should wear something that looks more like me,” she wrote. “If I bought something specific like what I’m supposed to wear, I wouldn’t wear it again.”

Some Mumsnet users share this view. Among them was RoseGoldEagle, who wrote: “It’s not a traditional wedding outfit, but honestly people wore all kinds of clothes to my wedding and I loved the variety. I think it’s a pretty dress and that it will be pleasant to wear.”

These views seem to be gradually becoming the norm, according to Weddings & Money 2021: A Brides & Investopedia Study published on the Brides website. Researchers surveyed around 1,000 people about their views on wedding traditions and found that 41% planned to incorporate unconventional elements into their celebrations. This included things like using a non-traditional venue (36%), opting out of the conventional bride’s white dress (28%) and choosing not to wear a veil (60%).

Although we are collectively moving in this direction, the majority of responses from Mumsnet users contradict the fact that many still believe that traditions should be followed.

For example, Shehasadiamondinthesky wrote, “It’s too short and skimpy for a formal wedding. Etiquette dictates that no one distract the bride. Wear something elegant with more coverage.”

“Yeah, that’s definitely a throw over a bikini dress,” 20viona added.


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