non-matronly mother of the bride dresses
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20 Mother-of-the-Bride Dresses That Aren't Matronly

Because your mom deserves to glow on your wedding day, too. Mothers of the bride (and groom!) will love these stylish looks.
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It's no secret that moms come in all shapes and sizes, yet it often seems like mother-of-the-bride (and groom) dresses are designed with a one-size-fits-all approach. Most options seem as if they were created to fit a shapeless body type, or they're so demure that they almost look matronly. Luckily, we were pleasantly surprised to find that there are plenty of mom-appropriate styles that are both flattering and stylish. To ensure the most important ladies in your life look and feel gorgeous on the big day, we rounded up some of our favorite mother-of-the-bride dresses that aren't matronly—because that word should be banned from weddings and fashion entirely.

Luckily, all of the dresses we found are appropriate for women of all ages and for any style event. The important thing to remember when choosing a mom-appropriate dress is to be playful with elements like color, silhouette, or pattern, rather than something like length. Necklines are another great fashion detail that moms can have some fun with. But just as you would for any other occasion, you'll want to avoid anything too showy—off-the-shoulder sleeves and deep V-necks are sexy and elegant, so long as they're not too revealing. 

No matter what style direction you're leaning towards, there are plenty of mother-of-the-bride dress options out there that are far from matronly—here is a selection we love right now.

off the shoulder dress
Credit: Courtesy of Bloomingdale's

Tadashi Shoji Off-the-Shoulder Floral Embroidered Dress


This vintage-inspired A-line silhouette is giving us total Marvelous Mrs. Maisel vibes.

lace mermaid dress
Credit: Courtesy of Nordstrom

Eliza J Lace Bateau Neck Mermaid Gown


We love a mother-of-the-bride dress in blush. This bateau neckline gown in delicate lace is both subdued and oh so pretty.

ruched twisted column dress
Credit: Courtesy of Nordstrom

La Femme Ruched Twist Column Gown


We'll never say no to flattering ruching! Add in a gorgeous gathered V-neck and sheer lace sleeves and this is a timeless mother-of-the-bride look.

beaded gown
Credit: Courtesy of Bloomingdale's

Adrianna Papell Beaded Gown


This dreamy gown feels like something out of The Great Gatsby with its delicate embroidery and sweetheart silhouette. 

embroidered crepe gown
Credit: Courtesy of Bloomingdale's

Tadashi Shoji Embroidered-Bodice Crepe Gown


Dramatic embroidery trailing down the side of the dress makes this dress an iconic look for a black-tie wedding.

sequin mini dress
Credit: Courtesy of Bloomingdale's

Mac Duggal Sequin Midi Dress


We're obsessed with the bold, organic sequin embroidery all over this long-sleeve midi dress. Can't you see this sipping champagne at a New Year's Eve wedding?

taffeta shirtdress gown
Credit: Courtesy of Neiman Marcus

Rickie Freeman for Teri Jon Two-Tone ¾-Sleeve Taffeta Shirtdress Gown


We looked up timeless in the dictionary and this black and white dress was there. Sumptuous taffeta, a tailored shirtdress top, and a darling bow detail. It's perfection. 

metallic shirtdress
Credit: Courtesy of Bloomingdale's

Teri Jon by Rickie Freeman Metallic Shirtdress


A shirtdress is always a timeless mother-of-the-bride look and this metallic take elevates a classic silhouette. 

beaded column gown
Credit: Courtesy of Saks Fifth Avenue

Aidan Mattox Geometric Beaded Column Gown


A silver Art Deco column gown is an absolute showstopper and will look so chic next to a bride in a similarly embellished look.

plus size beaded gown
Credit: Courtesy of Saks Fifth Avenue

Mac Duggal Beaded Feather A-Line Gown


Beading is fabulous, but add in feathers and a sparkly belt, and this A-line gown is over the top in all the best ways. 

sequin sheath gown
Credit: Courtesy of Saks Fifth Avenue

Theia Three-Quarter Sleeve Sequin Sheath Gown


Sparkling simplicity can be so glamorous. This sheath gown is covered head to toe in sequins, with elegant three-quarter sleeves and a gentle scoop in the back.

suit dress
Credit: Courtesy of Neiman Marcus

Carolina Herrera ¾ Sleeve Suit Gown


This full-skirted dress is straight out of an old movie. A refined suit-inspired top is perfectly polished, while the bow tie adds a touch of femininity. 

taffeta eyelet shirt dress
Credit: Courtesy of Neiman Marcus

Rickie Freeman for Teri Jon Taffeta Eyelet Shirtdress with Scalloped Hem


With the refinement of a formal shirtdress, but the playfulness of a daytime or warm weather wedding, this eyelet version is both flirty and fancy.

red lennox dress
Credit: Courtesy of Tuckernuck

Pomander Palace Red Lennox Dress


Feeling spicy but staying cozy? This red maxi dress in a comfortable knit fabric can be dressed up with jewels and fun shoes.

magnifico dress
Credit: Courtesy of Tuckernuck

La Double J Florence Placee Magnifico Dress


This bold, printed dress with a stand collar, sweeping bow detail, and voluminous sleeves is made for a Palm Springs-inspired, vintage-chic wedding.

off the shoulder dress
Credit: Courtesy of BHLDN

Pryce Off-the-Shoulder Column Dress


We're getting Oscars visions from this minimalist column dress in a beautifully draped, fluid silky fabric.

floral dress
Credit: Courtesy of BHLDN

Adrianna Papell Angeline Dress


As the grown up version of a slip dress, this moody floral is the most gorgeous take on a classic navy and light blue color palette.

petaluma dress
Credit: Courtesy of BHLDN

Petaluma Sequin Dress


This demure silhouette, covered in delicate crystal, sequins, and beading, is a lovely choice for a daytime ceremony and evening reception (truly, day to night!). 

floral dress
Credit: Courtesy of BHLDN

Mac Duggal Angelica Midi Dress


A Victorian-inspired blush and rose floral, punctuated with dainty beadwork, is equal parts garden party and glamor. Throw on this pretty, flowy dress for an evening on the dance floor.

jacquard off shoulder dress
Credit: Courtesy of Neiman Marcus

Rickie Freeman for Teri Jon Jacquard Off-Shoulder Dress with Twist


A sophisticated off-the-shoulder neckline in a gorgeous shade of periwinkle is the ultimate spring look for a classic mother of the bride.