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Mother of the Brides Dresses by Category

Oh, pity the poor mother of the bride, whose frock choices are often so bleh. Mother of the bride dresses seem to come in only a few categories, from beaded and boxy to overly sexy to the old school polyester pantsuit. That is, if you go looking specifically for mother of the bride dresses – as opposed to just ‘dresses’, which you may be surprised to learn are fine wedding wear for the MOB or MOG who wants to look her best. Really, does anyone at all look good in those square-cut un-tailored jackets with all the sparkles? Or, hello, shoulder pads? (And why do so many of them come in white…)

Exhibit A

Exhibit B

Exhibit C

The easiest way to avoid falling into the mother of the bride dresses pit of despair is to go shopping at stores that carry frocks that don’t carry the words ‘mother of the bride’ anywhere on their labels. Because while you may be the mother of the bride and you do plan on wearing a dress, I highly recommend steering clear of mother of the bride dresses in general.

Brides: What’s your mom wearing? And where’d she find it?

GIVEAWAY: Win a Nordstrom Bow Flap Silk Clutch!

I stumbled upon a neat little toy the other day in the form of Designer Apparel, a shopping search engine for designer (and better quality) clothes and accessories. They don’t actually sell anything – it’s basically just a way to browse for sweet stuff from shops like Bluefly and Bergdorf Goodman without having to go to each shop’s website. The price points are all over the map, though… as in, the search results might even include something I could currently afford!

Their newest little toy is a search that is designed with the mother-of-the-bride in mind. Shopping, when you’re the mother-of-the-bride is no picnic, so being able to see big bunches of mother of the bride dresses in one place is a boon to poor, overworked moms everywhere, as far as I’m concerned. Perhaps mom could treat herself to a fancy something or other from St. John. Or maybe something from Tadashi or J Kara, perhaps? The latter two are good choices for the MOB who’d rather not go into d-e-b-t.

silk clutch giveaway

Anyhool, when the nice people at Designer Apparel offered to help me do yet another giveaway, I said sure. For this latest contest, the prize is not a gift certificate but rather a pretty and feminine Nordstrom Bow Flap Silk Clutch. This luminous clutch could be a great gift for the mother-of-the-bride or a bridesmaid, and can be carried under the arm of by a delicate drop-in chain strap. It’s not the sort of bag you’d carry your life in, but it’s perfect for the kind of slim essentials you’d want to have with you when attending a wedding.

Win it!

Designer Apparel is offering Manolo for the Bride readers a chance to win a Nordstrom Bow Flap Silk Clutch. Love it! To enter, search Designer Apparel’s dress category in the “Sky’s The Limit” price range, and leave a comment on this post telling us which of the results you like best. Me? I am in lust with the Carolina Herrera floral jacquard ball gown, which is a mere $4,890. (And if that was the prize, I’d think long and hard about fixing the contest, so it’s a good thing it’s a clutch up for grabs instead).

For additional entries, do any of the following (and leave a comment for each):

1. As always, you can score one additional entry when you add Manolo for the Brides to your blogroll or let us know we’re already on your blogroll so we can link back to you

2. Score two additional entries when you sign up for the Designer Apparel My Sale newsletter

3. And you can pick up a whopping three additional entries when you tweet this giveaway or post about it on your own blog!

This giveaway will end at 11:59 p.m. EST on Sunday, June 13, and the winner – chosen via your friend and mine, the trusty random number generator – will be announced the next day. Good luck!

Happy Mother’s Day From Manolo for the Brides!

In honor of the day, I bring you a mother of the bride PSA.

For your wedding, do not force your mother to wear a shapeless, moldy tablecloth.
Moldy Lace MOB Dress
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Is Using the Regular Search Function Really That Hard?

As you probably already know, I’m a huge fan of Bluefly for bridesmaids’ dresses and even wedding gowns. Shopping there makes so much sense to me — for what you pay, you get a beautiful dress with a good name attached and oftentimes pay less than you would at the bridal salon. Yay!

bluefly-weddings

At some point in the not-too-distant past, Bluefly opened the Wedding 2.0 section of its web site. While I hate the whole ’2.0′ thing, I like the way you navigate it. First, you indicate whether you’re attending the wedding or in the wedding party, then you either choose what sort of wedding it is or your role in the wedding party. Finally, Wedding 2.0 presents you with a number of options. It’s not perfect, natch. I pretended to be a size 12 bridesmaid looking for a yellow dress and got two results. Slimming down didn’t help, either. And if you’re larger than a size 14, you’re out of luck all over the map, apparently.

All the same, it makes it a teeny bit easier to shop on Bluefly for wedding-wear. Not enough to get excited about, but that’s not going to stop me from featuring some lovely wedding-ready dresses and gowns later this week. Of course, I’d also love to hear about your favorite online shops that carry wedding appropriate gear for guests and members of the wedding party. Have at it in the comments!

Boxier frocks, pants suits, and coats, oh my!

The designers of a good portion of today’s MOB/MOG wear would have you believe that every proud momma is trim, toned, and ready to show off her dangerous curves. It’s a nice thought, but you guys have always been quick to tell me that your moms don’t quite fit that ambitious mold. I know from personal experience that my own MOG was rather nonplussed at the dresses my MOB was eying, as their body types couldn’t possibly be more different than they already are.

I’m not saying that moms of all shapes and sizes shouldn’t consider wearing something that’s a little more slinky than it is boxy, but there is definitely a contingent of moms out there who’d rather keep their assets to themselves, thankyouverymuch.

Full coverage doesn’t mean sacrificing shapeAnd then there’s the SASS!

Sydney’s Closet is a pretty reliable dress source if you’re looking to “size up glamour,” though their selection definitely features a staggering number of what I like to call MILF dresses. If mom doesn’t see anything she likes in the MOB section, point her toward the straight up formal wear area.

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You must be the bride’s “younger sister”

In the Christina’s universe…

She is, er, one hot mamma

…this is appropriate MOB/MOG garb.