Our favourite Mother of the Bride looks you can buy in Northern Ireland
As many women feel pressure to look '˜just right' on their daughter's Big Day, KATHRYN MCKENNA talks through her top picks at The Boulevard, Banbridge
As the Royal Wedding between Prince Harry and former actress Meghan Markle gets underway, all eyes will be waiting to see what the future princess will be wearing.
But focus will undoubtedly also be on the mother of the bride, Doria Ragland, who has met with the members of the Royal family including the Queen this week, and whom Meghan will be spending the night before the wedding with at renowned Cliveden House Hotel.
A lot of attention has been focused on the former actress’ mum, to whom she shares a particularly close bond.
But of course, all mother of the brides have a huge role to play during their daughter’s important day - particularly as a provider of moral support amidst the rush and chaos of the last-minute preparations and pressure.
So whilst it may not involve any members of the Royal wedding, many women feel pressure to get their wedding look ‘just right’, particularly in light of those ever-lasting photographs.
With this in mind, I’ve selected my top picks from The Boulevard in Banbridge, including options that would be just right for a formal and elegant wedding, to a simple and laid-back celebration abroad, or even for a small, private gathering with close family and friends.
Perhaps most importantly for the big day, you want to feel comfortable and therefore look confident, so I recommend going to the stores and actually trying things on. If anything, this will save you the hassle of constantly ordering different options on the internet, only to have to send it back for a different size or refund when it doesn’t look the way you envisioned. After all, it is hard to tell unless you are up close and personal, looking at the clothes yourself.
Additionally, senior associate fashion editor Carrie Goldberg at Martha Stewart Weddings famously advised, “Do not limit your search by simply searching for MOB dresses. It’s unnecessarily limiting.”
Typing in a style (short or long), sleeve length, and colour will return a wider range of stylish results.
The Boulevard in Banbridge is a great option for anyone wanting a one-stop shopping destination, where in just one visit you have the likes of L.K. Bennett, Marks and Spencer, Jaeger, Next and dozens more options at discounted prices.
After the bride has selected her dress, have a conversation with her about what she envisions for your look. She may want you to coordinate with the groom’s mother and the bridal party, or she’s picturing everyone in shades of white, or she just wants you to feel great. Opt for an in-person or phone chat; tones can get shifty through e-mail or text.
L.K. Bennett has a range of great options to suit all tastes, including my top pick (pictured, centre).
Featuring a dress and coat in Putty, with shoes in silver white, this is one look which is sure to flatter an array of skin-tones and body shapes and would certainly look at home at a traditional or glamorous wedding.
Paired with a simple clutch Maia Bag with jewelled pops of colour to add a bit of sparkle, this is the perfect size to allow for lipstick touch-ups throughout what is always a long day, in addition to any all-important MOB essentials, such as one or two trusted safety pins should your daughter or a guest be in need.
This is a great coloured tone for any mum who would like to stick to the more nude trend of things, but which gives a nice warming, rose-like effect. The separates could all individually be reworn on other occasions, such as parties, graduations, events and more. The shoes and clutch could also be a great stylish addition to a pair of jeans for a ladies’ night out or date night.
For a more relaxed, intimate family affair, or even just a celebration abroad, I have also chosen the vibrant yellow Dress Cecilia, from LK Bennett (pictured top, right). Ideal for a low-key restaurant where the reception is a simple dinner with friends.
Simply pair with heels and opt for a stylish handbag rather than a clutch to keep things more relaxed, and accessorise with a sophisticated blazer. Alternatively, for a holiday abroad, the Elle Blue dress (pictured above), is a great option. Add colour pop heels such as these vibrant Esme Fuchsia heels with matching clutch.