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With the debut of our Mother of the Bride Guide e-book and Mother’s Day this Sunday (cue the confetti!), we’re indulging our soft spot for mamas this week!

My wedding colors were black and white with a few light pink accents, so when it came to dressing our mamas, Brandon and I had a bit of a challenge! My own mama opted to wear a black dress… though not without a touch of worry over whether people would think she was “mourning” our wedding. Ha! A hilarious question if you know how much my mama adores my husband!

My soon-to-be MIL didn’t want to match her, but clearly could not choose white (could you ever imagine?!), so she opted for light pink. Since we had a black tie wedding in December, finding her dress proved to be such a challenge that she actually had it made by her seamstress!

Most mamas want to please their daughters and help them feel as beautiful as possible on their wedding day, but I know how hard it can be for mothers of the bride (and groom, for that matter!) to find flattering, coordinating, and reasonably-priced dresses.

Today, I’m sharing some lovely MOB’s who did it right as well as a few dresses on the market now that fit the bill of stylish, sophisticated, and relatively budget-friendly! ;) For more tips for wedding planning with your mama, be sure to pick up our Mother of the Bride Guide e-book today!

Image credits from left to right and top to bottom: Landon Jacob, Harwell Photography, Ryan Ray, Anagraham Photo, Michael and Carina, Gracie Blue, Charla Storey.

Our sweet mamas deserve to feel beautiful on our wedding days, too, so I’m excited to share a few favorites that would be a perfect fit (pun intended)! Note that many of the models chosen by the manufacturers are clearly younger than a typical mother of the bride, but I’m confident each of these options would look great on a woman of any age!

1. High-Low gown | 2. Ballgown with skirt | 3. Polka dot dress | 4. Phillipa dress | 5. Sequin-top gown | 6. Illusion neck gown | 7. Lace and print midi | 8. Lace sheath dress | 9. Yvonne dress | 10. Odette dress | 11. Off the shoulder ballgown | 12. Lace dress | 13. Ball skirt | 14. Linden dress

I’d love to hear: where did you find your mama’s dress for your wedding?

marissa Written with love by Marissa
2 Comments
  1. avatar Grace Speights reply

    Thank you for featuring my MOB dress in your article Stylish Mother of the Bride Dresses. I am wearing the pink gown photographed in the article. I had the gown custom made and designed to complement the Cheryl Blossom theme of the wedding. All credit goes to the designer and maker of the gown: Alvin Thompson of New Couture in Washington, D.C.

  2. avatar Ellie reply

    My mom found this gorgeous plum colored Pisarro Nights dress from Dillards (I think also can be found at Nordstrom) and it was BEAUTIFUL. I want one for myself!!
    http://www.dillards.com/p/pisarro-nights-3-4-sleeve-beaded-dress/504081306?di=04066692_zi_chocolate&categoryId=-10032&facetCache=pageSize%3D96%26beginIndex%3D0%26orderBy%3D1

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For Southern Weddings V9, we asked a few of our wisest, most creative, and just plain fun friends how they celebrate their anniversaries. From simple takeout dinners served on wedding china, to trips back to honeymoon destinations, and everything in between, their ideas spanned every timeframe, budget, and tradition we can think of. Whether you’ll be celebrating your first anniversary or your fifteenth this year, we hope these ideas inspire you–we’ll be sharing a new one each Sunday!

Jen Dillender

Our first anniversary came in the midst of a cross-country move and complete chaos. While it would have been easier to stay home, unpack boxes, and not really celebrate, we believe every milestone, big OR small, is reason to. So, we found a beautiful lakeside resort in our new home state and spent a long weekend exploring our surroundings, relaxing, and celebrating love. This time away together set us up for an amazing year ahead and came when we needed it most.
– Hilari Williams

Written with love by Southern Weddings
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When I moved to the South ten years ago, I fell in love with the beautiful blooms and fresh veggies of the spring and summer seasons. I couldn’t wait to grow all this beauty for myself! I dove right in, but of course, it did not come easy. I’m excited to share some tips I’ve learned in my own backyard, through trial and error, as you set out to start your own first newlywed garden!

The type and scale of gardening that makes sense will largely depend on the space you have to work with. Here are my best recommendations for a few different scenarios…

If you have a small patio or balcony:

If you’re hoping to grow vegetables in containers, you’ll need six to eight hours of sun a day. If you’re in a more shady spot, look instead for plants and flowers that are fans of the shade. You can easily spot these at your home improvement store because they are under the tented areas of the outdoor area vs. the varieties in the open sun!

Recommended container-grown vegetables for a sunny patio: cherry tomatoes, peppers, herbs like basil and chives, lettuce, and radish.

Tip: Purchase soil bags labeled “potting soil” for container gardens. This soil is specially created to help retain water longer vs. traditional garden soil. Look for food-safe varieties if you are growing consumables.

If you have a yard:

If your new home has some room to grow, give square foot gardening a try. A gardening kit such as this one will be the perfect start to your first vegetable garden. My own first year of gardening, I started with two 4×4 kits and grew tomatoes, cucumbers, zucchini, and peppers. Every year after, I’ve added a bed or two — and now have 10 beds with over 115 square feet of growing space! Yes, you could say I really enjoy this gardening hobby :)

Raised beds in Lara’s garden.

Cucumbers, carrots and green beans are favorites for canning! These are pickled veggies from Lara’s garden.

Wherever you decide to place your raised bed, make sure it’s near a water source so you can easily give your plants a drink.

Tip: If you are a DIY kind of gal, you can purchase untreated cedar wood planks at your local home improvement store and have them cut to create your own 4×4 raised bed (or any size configuration) for about half the cost of a kit.

If you are interested in growing flowers:

I tell friends the best flowers to grow are ones that are offered at your local home improvement store. The varieties will be specific to your growing area and more likely will thrive in your environment. While I love the look of sweet peas, they would never tolerate our warm Nashville springs and are much more suited for my friends in the north!

Hydrangeas are always a great Southern favorite and especially wonderful if you love the idea of cutting them for arrangements in vases in your home. Limelight Hydrangea grows well in sunny spots and produces dozens of branches of lime and white blooms. Come June, my home is brimming with vases of the branches!

I’ve also had great luck with zinnias and dahlias because they generally tolerate the hot summers and will bloom until the first frost in November.

Tip: For a better and longer investment, look for flowering plants that are listed as perennials so they will come back year after year.

The best part of gardening besides enjoying the fruits of your labor? Finding friends who enjoy it with you, too! Our founder, Lara Casey, and I love to chat all things garden.

If you’re eager for more gardening tips, Lara just wrote a great three-part gardening series on her blog that dives even deeper into this topic. From how to get started, to her favorite resources, and even a sample garden plan, you’ll find lots of growing tips over there.

Of course, if you’re looking for a place to track your garden growing wins and adventures, give my very own Joyful Garden Planner a try!

I’m so excited to see what you dig into this season in your own garden! Have a garden question you’d like answered? Drop it in the comments below. You can follow along with Lara’s garden adventures at @GraciesGarden and my own garden at @JoyfulGardenPlanner.

Written with love by Amber
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  1. avatar Jessica Peddicord reply

    This is exactly what I needed!! Thanks so much for sharing Amber!

  2. avatar Olivia reply

    This was so helpful! Me and my new hubby just moved to Southern California and I can’t wait to plant a garden! Thanks for sharing!

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