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Wednesday 10 May 2017

Carole Middleton wows in pale pink: Mother of the Bride Special

Arrriving at the church in pale pink Catherine Walker, mother of the bride Carole Middleton

The wedding season is in full swing. Pippa Middleton has finally married. and mother of the bride Carole Middleton was immaculate as always in pale pink Catherine Walker (above). A coat dress, or dress with coat option as she wore at the wedding of daughter Kate, are elegant and timeless options for the mother of the bride.

Carole Middleton and the Duchess of Cornwall at the wedding of Kate and William

Carole Middleton  and the Duchess of Cornwall at the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton 

Advice for Mothers of the Bride and Groom 

There's a tendency for Mothers of the Bride or Groom to go "off piste" and either wear something incredibly frumpy, or something too far Out There in an effort to look cooler and trendier than their counterpart.

Most MOTB/G are likely to be in their 50s and this is a good opportunity to shine in great tailoring and a colour that really suits you. A coat and dress combo, like those sported by Carole and the Duchess of Cornwall, is perfect.

One of the snags with most of the Mother of Bride/Groom outfits is that they tend to come in sugary colours which don't do much for a lot of us. I notice a lot of pale pink and light grey this year. My advice is to find a good dressmaker by recommendation, or meet one or two if you don't know any,. You can then have the luxury of choosing the exact colour you know suits you. For me, one of my best shades is lilac - and  I was lucky enough to find something off the peg.

Two years ago, I was dithering about what to wear for my step son's wedding. At first I wanted something that wasn't too old fashioned, that I could wear again.

I fell in love with a fuchsia pink Ted Baker dress but it was in the most unflattering material known to man. Finally, I decided to go with a traditional MOTB retailer, Gina Bacconi, and buy an outfit I would wear just once. I also had the opportunity, for the evening event, to wear something else, and for that I had a Joseph Ribkoff dress.

The Gina Bacconi dress in lilac had a guipure lace shrug. I decided to go with accessories in the same colour, and it was quite challenging to track down the right shade - at that time, lilac was not in vogue, although this year there's a lot more of it around.

Some good places to try are Ted Baker, where there are some stunning occasion coats; Gina Bacconi (try John Lewis), Jacques Vert and, for pretty summer dresses, Phase Eight and Hobbs. If you have a big budget and want to avoid anyone wearing the same outfit, go bespoke or vintage.
he Macea baby pink coat with bell sleeves is from Ted Baker, £259.

Gina Bacconi crepe dress and chiffon cape in silver mist, £270.

Jacques Vert rose print shift dress, £159. There is a crepe edge-to-edge jacket which would go beautifully with this at £149, ideal if you want to hide arms.

Tips for the Mother of the Bride or Groom

If your son or daughter is having a more informal wedding and there's no need for tights, fascinators or shrugs, you could consider a lovely trouser suit or jumpsuit like the pale pink one below from Massimo Dutti.

Make sure you find out what your counterpart is wearing, even if it's by email. You'll be in the same pictures so you don't want to be wearing clashing, or the same, colours.

Those dinky little cross-the-body bags or envelope clutch bags are all very well but for Mother of the Bride/Groom you will need something bigger. You'll need to carry Rescue Remedy, tissues, a small bottle of micellar to clean up makeup runs and wet wipes, plus your own lipstick, phone, mini umbrella and possibly a sandwich if any of the men in your entourage get irritable if their blood sugar levels plummet. There's a lot of hanging around at weddings and you don't usually get fed for hours.

On the shoe front, you'd be wise to avoid high heels, or, if you must, carry a pair of foldable flats in your bag for later. Break your shoes in by wearing them in the house and garden for a few weeks beforehand.


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  1. How gorgeous you looked Gail. Your son must have been really proud. I'm a huge Joseph Ribkoff fan too x

  2. This was very interesting to read, Gail. You look beautiful in your lavender and I just adore the fascinator. I wish we wore these beyond Derby Day here in the states. I was mother of the groom a couple of years ago for my step-sons wedding and enjoyed shopping for my dress. I went with a soft grey with a sprinkling of sequins. Thanks for linking up with Fabulous Friday!

  3. I have been a wedding vender (Photographer) in the area for twenty five years and I have never been treated so well by a wedding venue like I was at wedding venues Chicago. I am usually taken care of as a "last on the list" at venues, which I understand where the bride, groom and guest come first but the entire staff from the minute I walked in the door treated me so well.


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