Step-mother of the Bride

My step-daughter is getting married in 6 weeks. I had been asking my step-daughter what her mother was wearing to the wedding and she said it would be long, but she hadn’t decided on the color yet. The bridemaids are wearing short, black dresses. My step-daughter and I discussed color and style and we decided I would wear a pewter colored, long dresss for the 7:30 p.m. ceremony. After being given the go-ahead from my step-daughter, I purchased a strapless, simple long dress. I will wear a wrap around my arms. The dress is very simple with a sash and a few black rhinstones on the side. My step-daughter and I also took her grandmother shopping and purchased her a long black dress. I have asked my step-daughter several times what her mother is wearing and she would just roll her eyes and say she is having a hard time deciding. Yesterday, I received an email from the bride’s mother saying she knew we were all waiting to find out what she was wearing so we could purchase our dress and she has decided to wear a short, black,sleeveless chiffon cocktail dress. Her daughter said she had a hard time choosing between 8 dresses and finally decided on this one. I don’t know if I can return my dress. My step-daughter told me to wear the one I purchased and not worry about it. What should I do?

Rebecca Black, Etiquette By Rebecca

Dear Sdg,

Actually, all moms should be matching the formality of the bridesmaids, which means that your dress is probably too formal–yours probably should have been short. And, no mother wears strapless. So, this is a problem all around. But, since the MOB waited so long to choose her dress, you shouldn’t have to coordinate with her.

Best wishes,