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I am not known around the office as one who tears up often (we leave that to Marissa and Jess), but as Lisa and I were sending drafts of our Mother of the Bride Guide e-book back and forth, I found myself blinking back tears over and over.

The page where we shared 20 of our favorite ways mamas can create wedding season memories with their daughters was a reliable culprit. Blame it on my own baby girl turning one around the time we were editing our guide, or just that the thought of someday doing any one of these things with my precious girl is enough to overwhelm me, but there is undeniably something so bittersweet about the mother-daughter bond.

Wedding planning and the transition to a new chapter of life brings all of those emotions to a head. But friends, don’t be afraid of them! Embrace them for what they are, and let the tears flow as necessary.

In honor of Mother’s Day, here are twenty of our favorite ways for mamas and daughters to create memories during her engagement, whether you live under the same roof or across the country from each other. For more, be sure to pick up your copy of our Mother of the Bride Guide!

My Mom helping me into my wedding gown (photo by Tanja Lippert)

1. Throw the happy couple an engagement party.
2. Write her a sweet, heartfelt letter soon after her engagement to express your joy
and excitement.
3. Turn some of the tougher tasks into fun activities. How about “brunch and the budget
or “seating chart sangria”?
4. Invite her to peruse your jewelry collection for a “something old” or “something borrowed.”
5. Let her try on your wedding dress and/or veil.
6. Flip through your wedding album together and show her anything you may have saved
from your own engagement.
7. Shop for your dresses together.
8. Gift her a family heirloom at her bridal shower.
9. Spend an afternoon teaching her favorite family dishes, and then give her the recipes
(maybe with a special new recipe box or binder—we love the pretty options from Rifle Paper Co., Belle & Union, and Emily Ley!).
10. Go to a pre-wedding workout class together (bonus points for something neither of you
has tried before!).
11. Pray with her about her marriage.
12. Treat her and her fiancé to brunch or dinner, no wedding talk allowed.
13. Scour antique stores and flea markets for unique details together (candlesticks, vintage
china, embroidered handkerchiefs, etc.).
14. Unwind with a mother-daughter spa day or mani-pedi.
15. Watch old home movies while crafting wedding day details or favors.
16. Buy a bottle of the wine that will be served at the wedding to taste-test together.
17. Join her at dress fittings (and try to hold in the tears!).
18. Walk through her venue with her and listen to what she’s dreaming of for each nook
and cranny.
19. Take a class together to learn a new skill (calligraphy, flower crown making, etc.) that you
can put to good use for the wedding.
20. Tag along to help during her bridal portrait session.

emily Written with love by Emily
1 Comment
  1. avatar Michele Butler reply

    Love these suggestions! Very well thought out.

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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
  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!!

Southern Weddings reserves the right to delete comments which contain profanity or personal attacks or seek to promote a business unrelated to the post.  And remember: a good attitude is like kudzu – it spreads.  We love hearing your kind thoughts!

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Spring has sprung in the Southern Weddings Shop! We have a bouquet of new products serving up our signature practical and pretty for y’all, and I’m excited to introduce them to you today. And don’t forget – in honor of our birthday, there’s free shipping all week with code HAPPYBIRTHDAY – hooray!!

Filed under the “pretty” banner is our Southern postcard set! At just $10 for a set of 10, you can afford to send one to each of your bridesmaids every month, if you want to!

As we were narrowing down the designs, we kept asking ourselves which ones we’d really send to our favorite ladies – and if we couldn’t picture ourselves sending one, even if it was cute, we nixed it. My favorite is obviously the fabulous pineapple :)

Next up is a short and sweet addition to our e-book library, How to Give a Wedding Toast. Instead of searching the internet for hours, just purchase this handy guide and pass it along to your dad, best man, or maid of honor! This product was partially inspired by the terror I felt when faced with the task of toasting my older sister; if I can help even one other person do a better job than I did, I’ll be satisfied! :)

Photo from my wedding day by Tanja Lippert

Finally, I know we’re not supposed to play favorites, but I’m just going to go ahead and say it: I LOVE our new Mother of the Bride Guide!! It’s the same way I feel about our wedding planner: SO proud to have created something SO valuable, especially for a population that isn’t often spoken to!

We have a deep love for our mamas around here, and we’re so thrilled to finally have a product just for you. It’s practical, it’s inspiring, and it’s disarmingly sweet (I cried several times just editing it!). Mamas, buy it for yourself, and brides, buy it for your mamas as a little gift! I guarantee it will be money well spent. You can pick yours up here.

emily Written with love by Emily

Southern Weddings reserves the right to delete comments which contain profanity or personal attacks or seek to promote a business unrelated to the post.  And remember: a good attitude is like kudzu – it spreads.  We love hearing your kind thoughts!

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