Friday, April 17, 2009

What to Wear to a Funeral

I am going to a funeral this week and I met another girl that had one on the weekend. We were discussing what was appropriate attire for a funeral these days. I found myself giving what to wear a lot of thought. I even went as far as asking my mother if I must wear black. I finally did some research, and deeper thought on the issue, and decided to share what I found. Now I can help someone else out.

The first thing you need to do is think about the type of funeral you will be attending. If it is being held in a very formal environment such as a big Catholic church, or in a location known to be flooded with wealthy or upper class people then your attire will most likely need to be formal. Men, in this case, should wear black suits with black ties and ladies would be in longer, covering black dresses, with closed toed black heels and possibly a black hat. Think of a funeral scene from a movie and you'll get the picture.

However, the majority of funerals these days are not that formal. They are gatherings meant to mourn and celebrate the life lost and lived of the person who passed. What you wear should reflect the statement you are making in your thoughts regarding the person lost. It is easier to celebrate the life of a person lost after a very long and fruitful life, but it is very hard to celebrate the passing of a life cut too short. Many would not want to wear anything but black to a very upsetting funeral for a child, and you may want to wear something a little more fun to a funeral for your grandma who left quietly after many beautiful years. It is really is a matter of opinion but here are some basic rules.

• Never where bright colors such as hot pink or neon green, such a bold choice may be offensive to some. Obviously if hot pink was the deceased persons favorite color it would be appropriate for a bunch of girls to match wearing the color of her choice. There will be exceptions to the rules.
• Never dress sexy or provocative. You can never go wrong with being respectful & conservative.
• Check what church you will be going to. Some churches do not allow  your shoulders to show.
• Be clean and well put together. Shoes should be clean, and clothes should fit properly. Never wear athletic shoes or beat up jeans. 

Guys can wear a black button-up with no tie and the top button unbuttoned to look formal while feeling more casual. For a more casual look add nice jeans. For a  more formal look add slacks. Safe colors for girls include darker jewel tones, like deep purple, emerald, or even grey would be great. Many shades of blue are also very safe. The main point is not to dress to bright, or light. If you avoid being flashy or trashy and follow a few simple guide lines you can reflect your own personal style and feel comfortable. Don't stress, it's not as hard to get it right as we make it seem. 

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