Table of Contents
- 15 Kris Jenner (Worst)
- 14 Raquel Welch (Worst)
- 13 Jane Fonda (Worst)
- 12 Carole Middleton (Best)
- 11 Hillary Clinton (Worst)
- 10 Tina Knowles (Best)
- 9 Diana Ross (Worst)
- 8 Judy Garland (Worst)
- 7 Susan Sarandon (Best)
- 6 Bianca Jagger (Worst)
- 5 Princess Anne (Worst)
- 4 Mary Steenburgen (Best)
- 3 Kathy Hilton (Worst)
- 2 Judy Murray (Best)
- 1 Lisa Marie Presley (Worst)
- Tips To Avoid Mother Of The Bride Dress Drama
- Show articles in General
- Have a wedding question? Ask an expert.
- How Real Brides Resolved Mother-in-Law Conflicts During Wedding Planning
- The Fix
Weddings are, by nature, an emotional cesspool of fantastical expectations and frenzied reality. Add to that an argument over a wedding dress (a seven-year saga, actually), a complicated mother-daughter dynamic, and bad weather and you have all the ingredients for a perfect storm. Or, in this case, my nuptials.
My mother and I have a wonderful relationship, but in the throes of wedding planning we became dueling megalomaniacs fighting for the title of Bridezilla. At stake were two very different versions of the perfect day, both women determined to have their point-of-view dominate the occasion.
My mother eloped and never had a wedding, and I believe she’s always regretted that. She imagined a traditional wedding for me and assumed together we would plan one of the most special days of my life — so long as I planned things her way, that is — her way being a big Southern wedding in my parents’ backyard.
My mom envisioned the wedding as being a celebration of our entire family and for her friends, most of whom had known me since childhood. My mother, whose only aspiration in life was to be a mother, also wanted to celebrate her major accomplishment: raising me.
I had different plans. I was determined to avoid the clutches of a big, small-town Southern wedding and instead have a celebration which centered around the life I had built with my future-husband. 3000 miles away on the West Coast.
Merging these two very different fantasies just wasn’t gonna happen. Ultimately the occasion belonged to me. But instead of my mother ceding her expectations and joining in the fun, she dug in her heels and we fought over everything. And all of our angst found itself projected onto The Dress.
To me, the dress was the pinnacle, the beacon from which the entire affair hinged — immortalized in photos and displayed in perpetuity. My mother agreed. That’s where our agreement ended. Although she will never admit it, my mother also recognized how important the dress was to me, so she channeled her perception of being ignored into wielding control through the dress. Essentially, she irrationally took her hurt out in the way that would would hurt me the deepest.
For my wedding, I envisioned a vintage, cocktail-style dress as opposed to a traditional gown. I found a vintage Guy Laroche from the Jackie Kennedy-era on a couture website. My mother was not having that for a litany of reasons. Namely that it left her out of the wedding gown shopping procession.
My mother’s stated objections focused around “What if I didn’t like it in real life?” The site assured me I could return it given the special circumstances — this did not convince my mother, because her objections were in vain.
In an effort to change my mind, and give herself the full experience as MOB, she dragged me to a plethora of bridal boutiques where I campaigned for the elusive tea-length dress and she sat stone-faced, glaring at my reflection as I preened, mockingly, in front of the mirror.
Reading this you may be thinking two things: Is this woman really mature enough to get married? (I promise, I’m not). This woman is an ungrateful brat (I promise, I’m not.).
I was, however, operating in a bridal tizzy, which observes the rationale of a drunk person. I know now my mother’s resistance was an attempt at being included. She felt left-out and invalidated amid the euphoria of planning, during which she believed I only involved my parents when it came time to make deposits. (That wasn’t the case, by the way.)
I am a woman who loves my parents deeply, and understands them — faults and all. I am also a woman who knows myself — faults and all. While I was incredibly grateful for my mother’s excitement, it wasn’t her day, or even my day. It was a day about my future-husband and myself.
We wanted a deeply personal celebration of our relationship — not a celebration of my entire childhood or a celebration of my life with my mother.
We wanted a deeply personal celebration of our relationship — not a celebration of my entire childhood or a celebration of my life with my mother.
Something about the wedding, combined with my mother, brought out the worst in me. My mother felt the same. Weddings make people crazy — even the people not getting married, I suppose. For both of us the wedding became a sort of performance. It reversed time to my adolescence of us bickering and battling over everything. Resurfacing for my mother were her feelings of hurt and abandonment from when I moved away from home after graduation, at the gradual phasing away of my childhood, and her fears that my getting married would create an even greater distance between us.
I was returned to those feelings of being controlled and manipulated by my parents’ over-whelming desires of how I should be, and the feelings that my independence was being seized and my identity questioned.
Courtesy of Mary McClelland
The poor dress was a symbol of hope and innocence, a symbol of moving forward. Yet far from being the white flag of surrender, it became the target.
Also at the center of the fight was my father and my fiancée. My father, a man with little patience for hysteria or drama, waited with his checkbook open, fielding off my mother and I as we feverishly screamed at him about the other’s wrongdoings.
He pushed me to go along with her ideas, namely because he lives with her and was on more of the receiving end of her fury, but also because I think he had some empathy and understanding for what the wedding of her only daughter meant to my mother. In my corner was my fiancée trying to be helpful by reminding me it was “just a dress I’d wear one time,” while understanding my feelings.
Despite it being my wedding, my mother held the ultimate trump card: She was married to the main funding source — my father — and used that to stymie my attempts to obtain the dream dress. In exchange, I refused to yield to many of her demands: guest list, location, venue, food, wedding size, the caveat being that eventually I gave in with regards to the dress. It still wounds me.
Neither of us are above semi-nefarious means, sadly. I wouldn’t kill over a centerpiece, but my mother might slit a throat over bad floral arrangements!
Therefore I offered to purchase the dress myself, thinking she would panic over my wasted money and simply concede, but she one-upped me, thwarting my plan by pretending to relent. It was a ruse, plain and simple, yet I fell for her false promises.
When I realized I’d ben foiled, all hell really broke loose! My fiancée resorted to emailing my father. Together they threatened to cancel the wedding if the fighting didn’t cease. Obviously they had no actual plans of doing this, but it was a scare tactic. Finally, a temporary peace was forged upon a simple, strapless, ivory sheath of silk taffeta, which could be shorted to tea length.
Of course, more setbacks ensued. The designer discontinued that dress mere minutes after I found it. With renewed fervor my mother and I were soon back to warring, until my desperate fiancée called the designer of the now-extinct gown, and discovered they were producing a new version, which was inexplicably more expensive.
My mom, looking depressed (THAT DRESS IS AN ATROCITY FROM HELL! WHY?!) Courtesy of Mary McClelland
At this point, my father would have bought the moon to never again hear the phrase “wedding dress” used in animus. So, exhausted and beleaguered, and worn down by my mother who has more years on me in the passive-aggressive department, I conceded defeat and agreed to “jazz up” the sheath with accessories. My father even threw in jewels. The strapless silk was purchased at an exorbitant price, and my father put his foot down on hearing one more word.
In retrospect, I honestly believe if I had just made my mother feel more included in the process, the dress war would never have happened. I’m positive my mother also has regrets. Once the wedding was over, curiously, my mother started treating me with more autonomy, as if she understood she didn’t lose her daughter — she lost her little girl.
I’m still not over the dress drama. I do not claim my wedding dress — it hangs limply in the closet of my childhood bedroom. I suggested selling it but my mother refused — she’s holding onto her hollow victory in the form of sartorial evidence. On my wedding day, I’ll admit it looked fabulous, but it just never felt like my dress. And in my heart the vintage couture remains the one who got away.
In the same way the dress I wore didn’t fit my vision, the wedding itself didn’t fit my mother’s. So, in the penultimate act of passive-aggressive manipulation, she bought her MOB dress — get this — on clearance — from the Chico’s outlet, then refused to alter it. As a result, her bra straps are showing in every photo.
To this day lingering wedding hostilities rankle us both. Approximately three years ago my mother and I entered into a tacit agreement, through gritted teeth, to just stop discussing it. Honestly, except for the dresses, it was an unbelievably amazing day.
Mary McClelland Mary McClelland is a reality TV and pop culture blogger from WV.
When it comes to weddings, there’s usually some basic style etiquette that guests should be aware of. Stick to the bridesmaid dress code, don’t wear a hat so gigantic that you block the photographer’s shot of the happy couple, etc. You get the idea. But there’s one unwritten rule about wedding day etiquette that can make or break things for the bride-to-be—how her mom chooses to dress.
The mother of the bride’s style is a crucial consideration for most people, but particularly for celeb wedding days. The only thing worse than being upstaged (or embarrassed) by your mom on your big day would be to have that moment shared in magazines and news stations around the country! If your mom turns up in a hideous dress or shows an uncomfortable amount of skin, it’s a lot harder to un-see when your mom’s in the limelight.
Some of the celeb moms of the brides on this list got the balance just right between cautious and over-the-top. And then there are those who weren’t too keen on handing over the spotlight to their daughters and daughters-in-law. Here are the best (and worst) styles on show by celeb moms of the bride.
15 Kris Jenner (Worst)
The Kardashian matriarch has never looked particularly fashion-forward over the years, so it shouldn’t come as much of a surprise that her mother-to-the-bride dress choice didn’t exactly knock it out of the park either. The Kardashian mom, Kris Jenner, has sported two distinctly inappropriate mothers of the bride looks in recent years. At Kim and Kanye’s wedding in 2014, Jenner opted for a cleavage-baring v-neck gown, but her worst wedding style was probably this one.
At Kim’s wedding to basketball player Kris Humphries in 2011, Jenner didn’t only wear white, but she wore this OTT gown that could almost pass for a wedding dress itself. She’s copied her daughter’s strapless style and length and even added a statement bow just to make sure she had the most attention. Hideous!
14 Raquel Welch (Worst)
via Getty Images
The brunette bombshell may have been in attendance at her child’s wedding, but she clearly didn’t want to miss an opportunity to be the most glamorous guest at the party. Still looking stunning at 50 years old, Raquel Welch decided to dress to impress with this cleavage-baring bodycon dress. Her then-soon-to-be daughter in law didn’t look so impressed, though. Okay, so this is technically a celeb mother of the groom, but we had to include it in here for her sheer brazenness.
No bride wants to be upstaged by a hot-looking bridesmaid, least of all, her new mother-in-law! Unfortunately, this is what Rebecca Trueman was faced with on her wedding to Welch’s son, Damon, back in 1990, and it’s written on her face—this girl is silently fuming.
13 Jane Fonda (Worst)
The Grace & Frankie star has never looked better in recent years. In fact, at the age of 80, she’s arguably never looked more stylish either. It seems weird then that only 8 years ago, the legendary actress looked a lot older at her daughter Vanessa’s wedding back in 2010. Once upon a time, Jane Fonda was the kind of actress that could look good in anything, but even on her younger self, this would’ve been pretty unflattering.
The creased pantsuit and the bizarre mix of khaki green and leopard print pants make this outfit a bizarre choice as a mother of the bride. Even for an everyday outfit, this looks way too frumpy for someone of Fonda’s taste. We hope she ditched this ensemble for good after this pic was taken.
12 Carole Middleton (Best)
Carole Middleton had a tougher job than most celebrity moms of the bride on their little girl’s big day because her ‘little girl’ just so happens to be the Duchess of Cambridge and future Queen of Britain! When Kate and William tied the knot in the spring of 2011, all eyes of the world were not only on Kate’s gorgeous bridal gown but on her entire family’s outfits too.
It’s one thing for regular celeb moms of the bride to deal with spying paparazzi on their daughter’s big day, but poor Carole had every major news channel documenting the big day (and her style). Luckily, proud Mother Middleton hit the right mark with her choice of attire. Her powder blue dress coat and hat combo looked demure and elegant—fit for a second Queen mother!
11 Hillary Clinton (Worst)
While attending her daughter Chelsea’s lavish summer wedding in 2010, the former Presidential candidate clearly never got the message that she was attending a wedding and not a school prom. Hillary Clinton is not usually one for wearing dresses (and now we can see why!). Clinton’s signature look has always been a smart pantsuit in all the colors of the rainbow. Perhaps she should have stuck to what she knew for her daughter’s nuptials.
Chelsea’s grandmother, Dorothy, had the right attitude for a wedding attire. The grandma of the bride kept things elegant and muted in an emerald green gown with jeweled shoulder detail. Whereas Hillary… went the other way entirely. The dress might have worked if it weren’t for the overly-girly flower detailing and the puffy 80’s prom dress sleeves. This is way too weird for a MOB dress.
10 Tina Knowles (Best)
Normally, wearing white would be a definite no-no for any wedding guest, but Tina Knowles looks so stunning that we think we’ll let her off the hook just this once. The mom of Beyonce and Solange Knowles proved that style most definitely runs in the family when she attended her youngest daughter Solange’s wedding to music video director Alan Ferguson.
Solange celebrated her nuptials in New Orleans in 2014 and decided on the all-white theme herself, so we can’t really lay blame at the mother of the bride on this one. Queen Bee’s kid sister and the entire Knowles family looked show-stopping in their white pantsuits and dresses. Momma Knowles did design the outfits for the Destiny’s child girls once upon a time so perhaps she lent her creative skills to Solange’s big day?
9 Diana Ross (Worst)
The legendary pop diva has always managed to wow with her powerful on stage style and larger-than-life vocals, so it’s a shame that on the day of her daughter’s wedding, the music icon was left looking a little flat. It might be designed by Vivienne Westwood, but this dress doesn’t do anything for her. The strange mix of off-the-shoulder and corset style in a dress ends up looking a bit messy and not something we’d usually associate with the queen of power ballads herself.
This style might have looked better on Diana Ross in her younger years, but it isn’t so flattering here. It kind of looks like she’s wearing bed sheets (or a partway-deflated balloon). Not her most glamorous look by a long shot and a fairly cringe-worthy choice of gown as the mother of the bride.
8 Judy Garland (Worst)
She was an icon in so many senses of the word and was definitely a style icon to many, but I think we can all agree that Judy Garland’s star status took a backseat when she watched her daughter, Liza Minelli, getting hitched. Minelli and her then-husband-to-be, Peter Allen, tied the knot in a low-key ceremony in New York back in 1967, but there wasn’t anything low key about her legendary mom’s choice of outfit.
Garland chose to mark the occasion by wearing a rather ugly blue, green, and yellow striped coat with a matching necktie and pillbox hat. The dated-looking dress might not have done wonders for Judy herself, but the outfit certainly made Minelli’s bridal dress even prettier by comparison. Good job, Judy.
7 Susan Sarandon (Best)
Going to any event in near-matching outfits can be tacky, but the lovely Susan Sarandon manages to pull off a look that shouldn’t work even on her daughter’s wedding day. In tribute to her stunning daughter, Eva, on her big day, Sarandon had her mother-of-the-bride dress custom-made so that the lace neckline would echo that of her daughter’s bridal gown.
Not only is this a sweet way to honor your child on her big day, but it’s also a sophisticated and subtle way of planting your flag as the mom of the bride without being too attention-seeking about it. The gorgeous charcoal dress and intricate lace detailing was designed by Lela Rose and looks flawless on Sarandon. Such a cute way to coordinate with your kid on her happy day.
6 Bianca Jagger (Worst)
They say that you should never wear white as a wedding guest. But perhaps, an equally important golden rule should be to never wear black either, especially if you’re going to attempt to wear it like Bianca Jagger did for her daughter Jade’s big day. For once, the ex-Rolling Stone lead singer wasn’t the most insanely-dressed person in the photo. Jade’s rock legend dad, Mick Jagger, might’ve dressed in purple candy stripes, but her mom forgot to inject any cheer into her outfit whatsoever.
Bianca Jagger seems to be dressed more appropriately for a funeral than to celebrate the nuptials of her only child. Not only has she dressed gravely, but her style looks a little dated (say, by a few centuries?). It doesn’t help that there’s a traditional English country house in the background because she looks like she stepped right out of Downton Abbey in this getup.
5 Princess Anne (Worst)
The royal family has always been pretty hit-and-miss with their choice of wedding fashion, and this offering by Princess Anne is one of the very worst. On the day of her daughter Zara Phillips’ wedding to Mike Tindell back in 2011, the Queen’s daughter wore a strange mismatch of textures that made it look as if she’d picked her outfit out of a lost-and-found bin. She definitely stood out, though, so perhaps this was her intention?
Princess Anne’s 1950’s-style pleated dress might have looked nice on its own, but paired with this awkward and bulky cropped jacket just makes the whole outfit look very odd indeed and not exactly befitting a royal wedding. Meanwhile, her Majesty and grandmother of the bride looked a tad more demure in a matching pale pink coat and hat.
4 Mary Steenburgen (Best)
Ted Danson’s other half has always managed to look super glamorous. Even now in her 60’s, Mary Steenburgen is still a stone-cold stunner. Steenburgen looked especially radiant at her daughter Lily McDowell’s wedding in 2010 at the age of 57, and it’s fair to say that she put all other mothers of the bride to shame with this gorgeous dress.
Mary is pictured here with Ted Danson’s daughter, Kate, from a previous marriage, and the pair couldn’t look happier for their respective daughter and stepsister. Steenburgen’s flattering teal dress is the perfect complement to her daughter’s wedding. She’s color-coded with the bridesmaids whilst keeping to her own style, and she looks absolutely stunning. Proof that you can kinda steal the fashion show at a wedding without ruining your kid’s big day.
3 Kathy Hilton (Worst)
Paris Hilton’s mom, Kathy, may dress a little more demurely than her daughter (who doesn’t, to be fair?), but we wouldn’t exactly say that this was a great choice of wedding attire as the mother of the bride. Pictured here in attendance at her youngest daughter Nicky’s wedding to James Rothschild in 2015, the mom of the bride looked traditional but boring in her role and seemed to be dressed overly girly for her age.
A bit like Hillary Clinton on her daughter’s big day, Kathy Hilton fell into the trap of going overboard and overly youthful with her gown. The matching baby blue color is a cute touch, but the pearls and 3-D embroidery at the hem of her dress make this look closer to sweet sixteen prom than daughter’s wedding day. Not a fan.
2 Judy Murray (Best)
We’re breaking the rules slightly with this pick as Judy Murray is the mother of the groom, but she’s a fab example of how to dress as a parent of the happy couple, so we’re going with it. If you weren’t aware, Judy Murray is mom to professional British Tennis players Jamie and Andy Murray and was also Andy’s own personal coach before he made it big.
After watching her son held up the Wimbledon trophy, mother Murray had another reason to be extra proud of her son when he tied the knot with his beautiful partner, Kim Sears, in a Scottish ceremony in 2015. Judy struck the perfect balance as mother of the groom with an elegant cream dress and coat combo that flashed her amazing pins while keeping things muted and classy on top.
1 Lisa Marie Presley (Worst)
You’d think that being the daughter of the King of Rock and Roll, Lisa Marie Presley would have no problem looking stylish anywhere she goes. Judging by this picture, that’s definitely not the case. The daughter of Elvis looks less rock and roll and more plain and dull in this picture taken with her mom, Priscilla Presley, and her daughter and new bride, Riley Keough.
Wearing a black velveteen mesh dress with bizarre white fur cuffs, Lisa Marie definitely didn’t pick up on much of her Daddy’s show-stopping style… even at a wedding. In fairness, Riley’s grandmother, Priscilla, appears to be doing no better in the style stakes, opting for a fishnet dress with a green cami top. We’re not sure what these outfits scream out, but it’s certainly not wedding bells.
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Tips To Avoid Mother Of The Bride Dress Drama
Are you a victim of Mother of the Bride Dress Drama?
Okay, let’s be honest. Your child’s wedding day is a joyful event. Being the mother of the bride or groom is a damn proud moment. Buying your dress for the big day is a damn pain in the *ss!
So many things to consider both etiquette-wise and style-wise. And can we talk about the butt ugly options with sky-high prices? Where is a harried woman to begin?
Let’s break this down by etiquette and style!
Here are a few etiquette tips to keep the drama at bay:
- Remember, this is not a competition. I am not talking about competing with the bride – be realistic. I am talking about competing with the ‘other’ mother. Oftentimes there are two mothers to consider and in this day and age there may be multiples of each! Just be mindful of the collective group, don’t try to outspend or out ‘sexy’ the other Moms as that just speaks more to your insecurities than anything else.
- How much ‘say’ does the Bride have about your dress? The bride certainly has a stake in the game so she should be consulted in advance of your shopping. She most likely has a vision of the overall event, could possibly have strong color or style preferences and may even have opinions about short vs. long for both the MOB (Mother of the Bride) and the MOG (Mother of the Groom) dress. Like any other important event, it is best to hash out thoughts, ideas and preferences very early on so any potential drama can be avoided. And remember, it’s not about you. But actually it is a little bit, so let’s get on with that.
Whether you are the MOB or the MOG, there will be times throughout the day when all eyes will be on you as you walk into the ceremony, dance at the reception and then of course while orchestrating the shooting of the forever photos!
Here are shopping some tips to get you started:
- Start early – way early! There’s no time like the present and nothing worse than shopping at the last minute – we all know how that usually turns out. A six-month window is recommended, which allows for plenty of perusing time, changing your mind time, shipping time and tailoring time. You will be surprised how your taste morphs the more you look at dresses, websites and Pinterest of course!
- Consult with the happy couple – no doubt they have planned or at least planned to have planned, every magical moment. But alas, many young couples are not sticklers for details and you just might come up with a few magical ideas of your own.
- Consider the wedding color palette. There’s no point shopping in the Jimmy Buffet aisle if the color palette is pastel. Some brides like the Moms to coordinate with the bridesmaids and others want the Moms to be set apart. The important thing is for you to know the bride’s wishes and be sure to complement as opposed to clash with the group.
- Choose the style wisely as you could easily look outdated in a matter of minutes! Envision a dress from the 80’s and that should scare the pants off of you! These photos will live to infinity and beyond. Look for styles that are fashionable not frumpy, stylish but not trendy, and are classic and sophisticated.
- As with all shopping you know I encourage you to accentuate the assets and disguise the liabilities. Be careful of the ‘assets’ – you can’t be Joan Cleavage at the wedding. And be careful of the liabilities, if you don’t like the dimples in your upper arms then by all means wear a bit of a sleeve, as I don’t think the happy couple has budgeted ‘arm photo-shop’ for the moms!
- Think about the venue. Sequins do not a beach wedding make! Floor length gowns may not be appropriate or even maneuverable for garden receptions. Religious and cultural customs need to be taken into account as well.
- Is it a day or an evening wedding? What is the climate and geographical location? For example, women down South tend to bump it up a tad more than the women in the Northeast. If you are the out-of-towner, you do want to consider how the rest of the guests are dressing so you don’t look like the out-of-towner.
- Start hunting and gathering! But let someone else do the pre-work for you.
That’ s called PINTEREST! Follow my protocol:
- Sign up for Pinterest – pinterest.com
- Create your board – “Dress Ideas For Me”
- In the search field on the top of your Pinterest page, search “mother of the bride dresses” – and voila!
- I can hear you saying OMG! But wait, there’s more.
- View the tabs along the top – now refine your search by long or knee length.
- Keep scrolling girlfriend – you can choose by season, color and even type of wedding.
- Pin away with reckless abandon.
- You can even share your board with others!
- All this while sipping chardonnay at your computer and not spending a dime!
- I started a sample page – check it out – it’s a bit random, but you’ll get the idea.
Still fretting about where to begin? Let’s grab 30-minutes on the phone to go over your personal plan. We’ll chat about your preferences, the bride’s preferences, your wardrobe challenges, your assets, your liabilities and whatever else comes up! I look forward to ‘meeting’ you on the phone!
Need your own style guide? www.ConfidenceIsAlwaysInStyle.com
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Doreen Dove empowers women to use style as a tool to take strategic control of their image. She is an image consultant, personal stylist, professional speaker and author. Her extensive background in all aspects of retail has uniquely qualified her to work with women of all ages and professions, coaching them to personal style success.
Let’s keep the conversation going below. Comments are golden!
Tips To Avoid Mother Of The Bride Dress Drama was last modified: March 20th, 2017 by Doreen Dove
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While the stereotype of the evil mother-in-law is mostly untrue, there is the occasional mother-in-law horror story that sounds like a scene from a Hollywood film.
The below Reddit users share their most awful mother-in-law wedding horror stories…
Who chose your wedding transport?
The groom The bride Both of us Someone else Vote and see results
Shortly after my engagement I had to send my ring in to be resized because it was a little too big. My MIL asked me where my ring was and I said it was being resized because it was half a size too big. She said: “Why make it smaller! You’ll get fatter anyways and it’ll fit fine!” – Reddit user penguin444
My MIL wore a white wedding dress to the wedding. I contemplated asking the photographer to make her dress look green in all of the photos… – Reddit user greenandpink
My mother-in-law physically attacked my wife in the parking lot, accusing us of “drinking too much” on our own wedding night. Got to be reminded of this our entire honeymoon, there were bruises on her shoulders. When confronted had no recollection of the events that occurred even though she was sober that night. – Reddit user eighty9sho
Childhood friend of my mother in law, who my mother in law insisted be invited, showed up with her “hurt” ankle from walking? stole the wheelchair that was there for my wife’s 93 year old grandfather, and rearranged our seating chart, so she could be at the end of the table. In doing so she misplaced the cards for one of my oldest friends, who came up to me and asked where they were supposed to sit, and put a ex couple we had deliberately separated right next to each other. – Reddit user TheMilkJug
After making a big deal about knowing what my mother was going to wear so that she wouldn’t wear the same thing we made sure to send pictures and descriptions of the dress my mother bought. My MIL told us she was going to wear a purple dress. Great! My mom’s dress was Navy with lace sleeves. Wedding day and she is wearing a navy dress almost identical to my mom’s. “Lol we look like twins”. – Reddit user cinder8887
My husband is first-gen Korean American. My MiL disliked me for being white when we were dating but when he told her he wanted to marry me? She seriously threatened to kill herself. My FiL, a psychiatrist, had to threaten commitment to knock some sense into her. – Reddit user BlueGreenandBrown
“On the day of our wedding we were taking photographs outside the church with the photographer we hired for $2000. There was one with us and my side of the family, one with us and her side, one with us and all the grandparents, etc. In the middle of it all my mother figures this is a great time to get a photo of “just our family”, which she still defines as her, my dad, my sister and me. So she asks the bride, my wife, to step out of the picture. My mom shooed away my wife, making the bride cry on her wedding day.” – Reddit user adamj56800
I got engaged and showed her my gorgeous engagement ring: “Well that’s cute.” While we were planning the wedding it was always “IF you guys get married…” Every time I see her at a family gathering: “Oh are you guys still married?” – Reddit user deedee22
My MIL says I am taking her son away because we are getting married. She wants us to live with her forever and wants no part in the wedding. How fun. – Reddit user jay_ber
My MIL wore the same dress the same dress as my mom to my wedding. I showed her a picture of it because she wanted and “idea” of what she should wear. She had sent be pictures of 3 other dresses she bought, and I told her I loved any of them. I was very shocked when she showed up. Wasn’t that big of a deal, but I felt bad for my mom. – Reddit user sparrow664
My MIL wrote her son a letter a week before we got married telling him to think very carefully about what he was doing, as he needed to be sure he was marrying someone he loved and trusted. (We had been together for 6 very happy years at this point! ) She later walked out of our wedding in tears, drove home (7 hours away!) without saying anything to anyone and then followed that up by emailing me saying she didn’t know what husband (her son) saw in me. – Reddit user DD211205
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When Jimmy Fallon asked his more than 51 million Twitter followers to share their #WeddingFail stories, Amy Pennza’s tale stood out — just like Pennza’s mother-in-law did on her big day.
“My mother-in-law wore a wedding dress to my wedding,” Pennza wrote. “So, yeah, top that one, Twitter.” For proof, the Ohio-based novelist included a photo of herself and the groom’s mom dressed in floor-length white gowns.
— Amy Pennza (@AmyPennza) June 19, 2019
It should come as no surprise that Pennza was flooded with replies. “Is she still alive?” one person asked. Snipped another, “Did you get sneezy while holding a big glass of red wine?”
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Pennza elaborated on what happened in a series of follow-up tweets. “I don’t remember much about the day. Most people say their wedding is a blur, and that’s true for me, too,” she explained. “But I know I said this: ‘You… You could be the bride…’”
So, a couple people have asked for the story behind The Dress. Sorry for the delay! I have four kids (yes, I married him) on summer break, so my permanent state of being is “frazzled.” I called my daughter “mom” the other day.
— Amy Pennza (@AmyPennza) June 20, 2019
Though Pennza ultimately took the situation in stride, her sister and college roommate had concerns about what might go down.
“They both spent the reception looking at me, then each other, then MIL, then me, then the cop the venue made us hire — hoping I didn’t go for his taser,” Pennza joked. “I’m happy to report the wedding unfolded without bloodshed, or anyone being shoved into the champagne fountain.”
How Real Brides Resolved Mother-in-Law Conflicts During Wedding Planning
Your future mother-in-law is, more than likely, the other most important woman in your future spouse’s life—so when it comes to wedding planning, it’s no surprise there can be some clashing here and there. That’s why we took to our Facebook forum The Wed Thread to see how real brides have resolved conflicts with their future mothers-in-law (whether she’s a pushy penny pincher or an unsolicited-opinion giver—not that you’d ever tell her so, of course) during the wedding planning process. Below, find out how these brides dealt with the drama, because—monster-in-law or not—it’s pretty much bound to happen.
“My future mother-in-law was trying to control the guest list. My fiancé doesn’t speak to many of his family members from his mother’s side, so she was upset when she saw he practically invited none of them. Rather than have a huge fight, we allowed her to invite eight people of her choosing to our wedding. It resolved the conflict completely.” –Mariah
“The worst moment was when my future mother-in-law tried to tell me I HAD to ask my fiancé’s stepsister to be a bridesmaid, even though she explicitly said she didn’t want to be. Thankfully, my fiancé is amazing and supportive and talked to her for me. She came around.” –Brie
“My future stepmother-in-law has been blowing up Facebook, posting pictures of dresses she wants to wear for the wedding (saying she needs a mother of the groom dress even though she married my future father-in-law after my fiancé was out of the house). I finally had to step in when she started posting dresses that were a little too close to white—I simply told her what colors would be more appropriate. Call me a bridezilla, but I’m the only one who will be wearing any shade of white, ivory or cream.” –Lindsay
“My future mother-in-law has an opinion on absolutely everything, even when we don’t ask for it (and my fiancé and I are paying for the entire wedding ourselves). Currently, she’s pushing us to have a cash bar and heavy apps instead of dinner. She constantly sends us emails telling us she’s talked to several caterers and gotten quotes, even going so far as to assume the meals we want, all without consulting us. We’ve had to tell her gently several times that we’re not interested in doing a cash bar and heavy apps—we plan on doing complimentary bottles of champagne at each table and a full meal for our guests. We’ve been struggling a lot to tell her she needs to respect our vision.” –Natalie
“Everything’s been okay except when it came to finding a venue. My future in-laws live in a little farming town, and my future mother-in-law suggested we have the wedding at a little park that’s not in the best shape. My fiancé, thankfully, shut that down really quickly so I didn’t have to.” –Brittany
“My future mother-in-law sat me down and told me that she would follow our lead and help where she can, and do research with us to make our vision come true. I breathed a sigh of relief and was so happy that I wouldn’t have to fight or contradict her at every turn. But now every time I share something with her (whether it’s the fact that I don’t want an engagement ring or that I want to get ready with my fiancé the morning of our wedding), she adamantly goes against all of our ideas and emphasizes the importance of traditions. I leave the resolutions up to my fiancé because it’s his mom, and I would never expect him to deal with my mom when conflicts arise. I talk to tell him my side of things, and we both know she means well.” –Raluca
“My future mother-in-law is super needy and texts me multiple times per day asking random questions. After weeks of asking about my mom’s dress, I sent her a picture of the dress my mom ended up getting the day she bought it (it’s a beautiful, navy lace gown). I told her she could do something similar or different, but I suggested she may also want to do navy because it’s a more flattering color than the other one in our palette, which is light gray. She texted me a picture of her dress the next day—it’s a crushed satin ice blue dress that looks like it’s from Goodwill. I didn’t want to drag it out any longer than I already had so I told her it was fine. Is it bad that I’m letting her wear it so I can have something to laugh about on my wedding day?” –Chrysta
“Overall, my future mother-in-law comes from an amazing place and has a wonderful heart. I’ve been grateful for her help, but she has a ton of opinions. Both she and my mom are extremely strong-willed and try to step in and help a little too much. It’s causing a lot more opinions than I need, so I’ve decided to take over the planning just by myself.” –Samantha
“My future mother-in-law demanded the kids’ table be placed in the back of the room, and I just told her no!” –Emily
“My future mother-in-law has ordered four dresses online—two that match our wedding colors, one in ivory and one that’s a lime, seafoam-green color. I told my fiancé he has to resolve this—if not, I’ve already recruited my maid of honor to ‘spill’ wine.” –Stacey
One of the biggest faux pas at weddings is outshining the bride – especially by wearing something that will take attention away from her carefully chosen dress.
This is especially important for the wedding party, where as a rule bridesmaids should wear unflattering outfits in ugly colours (of course, not all brides adhere to this standard, made popular by romantic comedy storylines).
Some brides go with unconventional dress codes, such as the one who told her guests to wear dresses from their own special day.
But, if you show up in this sultry mother-of-the-bride outfit, we’re fairly certain that more than a few heads will turn.
(Picture: Tonena/Etsy) (Picture: Tonena/Etsy) (Picture: Tonena/Etsy)
The sexy dress, made by Bulgarian designer Tonena, is causing a stir on social media – people are in awe over it.
While not traditional, it certainly is a showstopping number with black sheer panels, feathers and open back.
The dress also includes adjustable sleeves and a push-up effect on the bust, for a little extra oomph.
Designer Tonena explained that the open back can be closed up, for those ‘aiming for a more conservative look’.
Twitter is loving the dress, with many referencing female movie characters (some evil) who would approve, such as Maleficent, Moira Rose from Schitt’s Creek and Cruella de Vil.
the pure awe i experienced when i saw this was labeled a “mother of the bride” dress pic.twitter.com/qH19bKLbS1
— Rave Sashayed (@_sashayed) March 12, 2019
Maleficent’s daughter’s wedding pic.twitter.com/GABavgoBPp
— angrynerdgirl #UncagedAnthology (@Miss_Jess03) March 12, 2019
This dress alone is a 3-season drama on Netflix. I’d watch.
— Janet Gottschalk (@Smudgecatmom) March 12, 2019
The spots are for the coat 😉 pic.twitter.com/7aVCisCJnw
— Monica (@TheBigMeeow) March 12, 2019
One woman wasn’t too keen and suggested she might have to add the dress to her ‘no-no page’ (just in case guests get inspired).
Another wrote she would get the dress and ‘chaperone my sons to their first school mixer in a few years’.
Things got a little morbid too, as one Twitter user said she would use the dress in a ‘funeral plan’.
Mother of the bride? I’ll get this to chaperone my sons to their first school mixer in a few years.
— Aly 🐱 (@alywelch) March 13, 2019
Actually we will use this dress in our funeral plan
— Sophie Brousa (@SophieBrousa) March 12, 2019 Advertisement Advertisement
Tonena’s floor-length mermaid design will cost you £1,816.17, but she also has plenty of others to choose from including another mother-of-the-bride piece called ‘mobs wife’.
Love it or loathe it, the gown is definitely controversial on the wedding scene.
But if the wearer doesn’t mind and the bride doesn’t either, why not go with a sassy black gown instead of a pastel piece?
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