The Bride should take the initiative and tell them what she is wearing.
Both mothers should be taking cues from the Bride. "Let them know the shape, fabric and level of ornamentation of your dress so they can look for outfits that are keeping with the tone," says Ingram. I personally, have many Brides that take both moms on their search for the perfect gown. If this is the case, then this first step will be relatively easy. Although BEWARE of allowing too many people tag along because an abundance of opinions can become frustrating and often confusing.
Send YOUR mom shopping first.
Traditionally, the Mother-of-the Bride buys her dress and then describes it to the Mother-of-the-Groom," says Ingram. "Communication is key." Make sure you are very descriptive about your Mother's dress, send your fiance's Mother a photo or tell her the color, style and designer. You need to do this so she can choose her dress appropriately and not look as though she belongs at a different event. Also, and most importantly, so she is careful not to outshine your Mom!!
Give them guidelines.
As a Bride you can call the shots but make sure you call them tactfully:-) It is well within your rights to steer both Moms toward certain colors or away from them if you want. The strength of your influence will be completely dependant upon their personalities. In a perfect world, the Moms' should follow these rules:
- Keep the choice of dress in the color family. Selecting varying shades of your Wedding palette will make things look very cohesive without being to matchy-matchy.
- Nothing overly sexy. Even if Mom has a premier membership at the local gym, ask her to keep the hemline at the knee or below and the neckline on the conservative side. I know a few "older" women who still think they are in their 20's and dress like their teenage daughter and friends. Make sure they dress age appropriate!
- Their drama level should be below yours. If your dress has sleeves, theirs shouldn't be strapless; if you're wearing a sheath they shouldn't be in ball gowns. I think this guideline is important and not quite as obvious as the previous two suggestions.
- No white. Period. According to Mark Ingram, "you would be surprised at how many moms and Mothers-in-law convince themselves that a "cream" dress is appropriate.
http://marlenesdressshop.com/ - Collingswood, NJ
There are several dress boutiques that are local (and one not so local) to A Beautiful Touch that I would highly recommend and have included links to their websites. I have heard many positive reviews and have had plenty of happy customers that have patronized these fine stores.
http://jansboutiqueonline.com/ - Cherry Hill, NJ
http://fashionsbypenina.com/ - Marlton, NJ
http://sterlingsofnewhope.com - New Hope, PA