Funeral attire

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by flutterbee, Dec 4, 2008.

  1. flutterbee

    flutterbee Guest

    This may seem like a silly question, but I have no experience with this. My family doesn't do funerals. It's not that we don't go to them, it's that our family doesn't have them - except for my grandfather. I've only attended one funeral and that was when I was heavily pregnant with easy child.

    I don't have anything that would resemble proper funeral attire. I have 2 pair of denim jeans that fit and some tops and sweaters. The jeans are decorated - one with a beaded floral pattern and one with dragonflies. I have no skirts that fit. Really not appropriate for a funeral.

    I don't have much money and I would like to attend my neighbor's funeral. My mom insists that what I have would be fine to wear, but I'm not so sure. Our families take on funerals is much less formal and is considered a celebration of the life of the deceased. I do know that Bob and his family are very down to earth and don't put on airs, but....

    Should I go to goodwill and try to find something a bit more 'appropriate'?
  2. Jena

    Jena New Member

    Honestly, it all depends on the person. Me, personally i'd wear whatever i wanted, you taking the time to be there and pay your respects, that they'll appreciate i'm sure. Id' probably just pick a top out that is darker, more blah type of shirt to mix with the jeans.

    Yea, id' def go with what you have, they'll be thankful you went.
  3. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    Heather, I'd pick a nice top and pair of slacks or jeans. My family has never held to the "black" tradition. Actually, I've been to alot of funerals and have yet to see anyone who still does. Something tasteful is fine. Dressing up is not really required.

    I'm sorry to hear your neighbor passed on.

  4. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    Well, I wouldn't wear a prom dress to a funeral... you just wear whatever you own and don't over-do it. You're there to lend support to the family, so that's what really matters.
  5. Andy

    Andy Active Member

    I am sorry to hear about your friend. I think whatever you have at home will be fine. I have not noticed any special dress codes at funerals.

    His family will be comforted to hear how helpful he had been to you.
  6. donna723

    donna723 Well-Known Member

    I can tell you honestly ... my mother died many years ago, and I can still tell you every person that was there, every single one that cared enough to show up and offer their comfort and support. I can even remember what some of them said to me. But I couldn't even begin to tell you what any of them were wearing! It wasn't important - it just was important to me that they were there!

    Just wear something tasteful and show up! They'll appreciate that you cared enough to be there.
  7. trinityroyal

    trinityroyal Well-Known Member

    Heather, I agree with the others.
    Your being there to show support to the family is WAY more important than what you're wearing while you do so.

    The only reason I remember what people wore to my favourite uncle's funeral several years ago is that he requested everyone where royal blue, his favourite colour. Otherwise, though I've been to several I've never really noticed.
  8. Marguerite

    Marguerite Active Member

    I wasn't sure how to answer this because there could be cultural differences between Australia and the Us, but from other people's responses it doesn't seem so. I mean, our only experience with what is the 'norm' in the US for funerals, is what we see in movies and soaps. And there, everyone wears designer black, unrelieved by any colour or even a flash of white.

    In China, white is the colour of mourning.

    In Australia we might try to wear black, but if we haven't got anything black we simply try for something subdued and not too casual. I've worn dark green, magenta, grey, navy - actually navy blue can be a good compromise. But if you have no choice but to wear bright colours, then tell anyone who is scandalised that you are wearing it as a tribute to the colourful personality and love of life of the deceased person; they wouldn't have wanted everyone to be drab and dull, they would have said, "celebrate!"

    The only disadvantage to wearing really bright colours - you could stand out a bit. But if you're OK with this, then wear what you feel comfortable with, whatever your neighbour liked to see you in. And the rest of the mob can go hang.

    Sorry for your loss. Just remember the friend you loved and forget anything else. As long as you're not running around naked, it should be OK.

  9. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    In our family (which by the way is not a normal family LOL), we try to dress more traditional if it was an older (elderly) person that passed. But that only means not wearing anything "flashy" and trying to keep it a little to the darker side- unless a man wears a white shirt. Other than that, the only thing that sticks out in my mind is that it's appropriate if it's not an obvious attention-getter.
  10. crazymama30

    crazymama30 Active Member

    I am with the nice pair of jeans and a nice shirt, not too dressy but just classy. I think Daisy used that term. That sounds good.
  11. Fran

    Fran Former desparate mom

    Winter, I think the current standard is more somber colors but slacks and jacket is appropriate.
    I agree that the family will be grateful for your words of comfort. It wouldn't be a blip on my radar what anyone wore.
    Give them your sincere sympathy and dress with what you have. Slacks are certainly acceptable.
  12. mrscatinthehat

    mrscatinthehat Seussical

    Last funeral I went to was in jeans I think. I had a sweater on with them. I would say most of the folks there were also in similiar fashion except a couple of folks in work uniforms. And this was for someone over 80. It doesn't make a whole lot of difference these days for m ost funerals. They will just be appreciative that you came.

  13. meowbunny

    meowbunny New Member

    First, I'm so sorry to hear that he died. I know how much you cared for him and vice versa. The world has lost a true gentleman and the universe has gained a bright star.

    I wore a bright red dress at my dad's funeral. Why? Because it was his favorite dress. He had many friends there. Like Donna, I remember every single person that was there and almost every word said. I do remember two outfits -- one because she wore a bright yellow dress because that was dad's favorite color and I thought that was a wonderful gesture on her part and the other because it was truly inappropriate -- bare midriff, tight top; the whole hoochie mama look. That one did offend me, as I know it would have my father. Otherwise, I have no clue what others wore.

    So, wear what's comfortable. It really does mean something to the family that you cared enough to be there, to care and to remember. That's really all you need.
  14. katya02

    katya02 Solace

    Lots of good advice here, and the best is that your presence and support are the most important thing. Otherwise, dress codes are cultural. If your neighbor embraced a particular culture or tradition/style, something showing that you've taken that into consideration would be nice. Otherwise, anything that doesn't draw attention to oneself should be appropriate.
  15. flutterbee

    flutterbee Guest

    Thank you for the advice. I guess your presence is more important than your attire.

    It turns out that there will not be a funeral, but a memorial gathering at his home on Sunday.
  16. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    I think you could find something very nice at the Goodwill for a price you won't mind. I also think jeans are ok, but not decorated, with a black sweater or jacket.
  17. Shari

    Shari IsItFridayYet?

    The important thing is being there.
    When my dad died, I packed to travel hours from home; I arrived with 6 pairs of pants and 2 shirts. Neither one nice. My brothers did the same, tho. lol I asked a friend coming up later to bring a particular shirt and jewelry for the visitation. So I wore a bright pink western shirt to my dad's funeral. I had made it to go with the jewelry the kids had given me that previous Christmas. Dad was always proud of my creativity (even when it made me weird) and he wore or played along with whatever ridiculous things the grandkids presented him with, so I thought it was a perfect fit.
    Several of the grandkids and neices and nephews bought and wore John Deere t-shirts. One farmer/neighbor came in his bib overalls. The Amish came in their Sunday clothes. I remember these because they fit dad's personality - not because they didn't fit in. I know people passed in suits and pearls, but I don't recall who. I know people passed in jeans and t-shirts, but I don't recall who they were, either.
    I'm sure you could find something at Good Will or the likes, but unless you are just really uncomfortable with what you have, I'd expend the energy being there instead of prepping to be there.
  18. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    I'm a bit late to this ... but can you go to the memorial gathering at the house? Then you could definitely wear whatever you want. I agree with-the others, the idea is to be somber, no party clothes, although for children's funerals, people often wear bright colors so it isn't so morose.
    I hope it goes well for you all. Best of luck.
  19. donna723

    donna723 Well-Known Member

    I think I would wear the same thing to a memorial gathering as I would to a funeral, unless you know for sure that it's going to be very casual.

    I guess every area has their own traditions. Around here people dress a lot more casually for the visitation the days before the funeral than they do for the actual funeral. A lot of people stop by on their way home from work in whatever they're wearing as long as they're not dirty or scruffy looking - nobody cares. For the actual funeral most people dress pretty much like they were going to church. In some of the churches people do wear jeans and in some they don't. But if they do, they wear nice ones.