How to pull off a polished look for your wedding party with ease.



Too many mothers of the bride make the same humble mistake: It's not their day to shine, they say, so they'd rather just dress comfortably.

Think again, says Columbus stylist Elizabeth Bean Smith, owner of Wardrobe Therapy, who often helps moms choose wedding looks.

"This is an important day for you as well," Smith said. "Feel glamorous. Let yourself be beautiful. Don't be afraid to get dolled up."



That may require dressing out of a woman's comfort zone, she noted.

"I think that (Mom) needs to look at it just like the bride and really put thought into her outfit, because she is speaking on behalf of her family," Smith said. "She needs to look and feel great, but sometimes that means pushing yourself."

With that in mind, here are Smith's tips:

You're not a bridesmaid
Don't try matching the bridesmaids' colors or styles. "A lot of times, they can begin looking too costume-y," Smith said. Instead, Mom should wear whatever color makes her feel best. Black is OK
Many mothers believe black is against the rules, Smith said. Not so: "It's actually very modern now to wear black to a wedding," she said. "It makes it very black tie." Consider a wrap
It is a good idea for Mom to cover her arms in the church (for both religious and temperature reasons) and photos. But traditional "mother of the bride" jackets can make mom look frumpy. Wraps are elegant and stylish. Boleros or cropped jackets are also worthy options. Options abound
Consider what bridal stores offer, but also look at traditional clothing stores or boutiques. Wear your undergarments
They're slimming-and are especially helpful with often-unforgiving materials like silk and chiffon. And remember: It's not all about comfort. "Even though you want to be comfortable," Smith said, "you still want to be appropriate."