Funeral Attire Ideas for Women
When many western women think of funeral attire, they imagine long black dresses and veils. However, traditions are changing, and while it’s still important to be respectful, there are many more options for what women can wear to funerals.
Before making any funeral outfit decisions, start by looking for instructions. Especially for less traditional services and celebrations of life, more and more families actually request that guests don’t wear black, and some will request specific funeral attire that seems fitting to the deceased. On Wonderful Life, we’ve seen families request everything from Hawaiian shirts to the colors of a specific sports team. If you’re unsure about what to wear to a funeral, check with someone close to the family.
If you haven’t seen or heard specific instructions, here are some general guidelines for funeral clothes. (Note that these may not all apply to non-western funerals.)
Stick with darker, neutral colors.
As mentioned above, black is no longer necessary, but you should probably avoid bright yellow. In addition to black, grey, navy, dark red, green or purple funeral apparel are all perfectly fine.
Keep patterns simple.
A subtle pattern is completely fine, by try to shy away from anything bold or eye catching. If a funeral outfit draws attention to you, it probably isn’t the best fit.
Short hemlines and low necklines are generally considered distasteful at funerals. A good rule of thumb is that what you wear to a funeral shouldn’t be less conservative than what you’d wear to the office.
Look put together.
You certainly don’t have to wear a funeral dress, but lean toward dress pants (no jeans) and nicer blouses.
Avoid flashy jewelry.
Similar to patterns, you want to keep funeral jewelry simple and understated. If you happen to own jewelry that used to belong to the deceased or that the deceased gave to you, that can be a nice, personal touch.