How much should you match as a mother of the groom?

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Choosing a dress can actually be harder as a mother of the groom than as a mother of the bride, for one reason: color. Brides are usually dressed in white, which plays well in photographs with dresses of any color; grooms, on the other hand, often wear vests, ties, cummerbunds or even shirts in a color related to the wedding’s theme. You want to look good when you take photos with your son, but you want people to know that you’re his mother and not another bridesmaid, so how much matching is too much?

Don’t do nothing but match

A wedding’s theme color makes for an obvious choice for your mother of the groom dress, but it will also make you disappear among the bridesmaids and the place settings. Worse, it can draw attention away from your son in photographs, since the eye will be drawn from his colored accessories over to your colored dress. If you want to wear the wedding’s theme color, try wearing a colored print on a white background: not only are prints youthful and fun, but breaking up the blocks of color will help photographs look balanced.

Try a secondary color

Often weddings have more than one color in the decor: one for the major areas of color like napkins and curtains, and an accent shade for bouquets and ribbons. If you pick a dress that matches the accent color instead of the main one, you’ll stand out from the bridesmaids without clashing with either your son or the room. Better yet, accent colors are often metallics or neutrals, which are flattering to most skin tones and easy to accessorise against.

Go bold with a complementary color

If there’s no accent shade (or no accent shade you like), find the theme color on a color wheel and choose the hue of your own dress from the opposite side. It’s impossible to go wrong with complementary color combinations like blue and yellow: together they’re pleasing to the eye, but separately they are individual and eye-catching.

Go subtle with tone on tone

Matching different shades of the same color is tricky and you might need some help, but lighter or darker shades of the hue your son is wearing will be harmonious in photographs without turning the two of you into a solid block of color. If you’re having trouble finding shades that don’t clash, use a paint swatch from a hardware store to find the color your son will be wearing. Lighter and darker shades on the same swatch will all work for your own dress.

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