32 Modern Mother-of-the-Bride Dresses That Are Anything But Frumpy

Moms, get ready to bring your A game.
Monica Mercuri - The Knot Assistant Fashion Commerce Editor
by
Monica Mercuri
Monica Mercuri - The Knot Assistant Fashion Commerce Editor
Monica Mercuri
Assistant Fashion Commerce Editor
  • Monica writes articles for The Knot Worldwide, specializing in fashion commerce content
  • Before joining The Knot Worldwide, Monica was an assistant style and market editor at House Beautiful
  • Monica holds a bachelor's degree in journalism and mass communication from George Washington University's School of Media and Public Affairs
Updated Oct 03, 2023
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There's a world of possibilities when it comes to mother-of-the-bride dresses, which means you're pretty much guaranteed to find something you love. That said, having such a wide variety of options might feel a little overwhelming. If you're not sure where to start (or you just want to see what's out there), consider us your personal stylist.

Before you begin your search (which usually happens around the six- to eight-month mark), brush up on mother-of-the-bride attire etiquette. Then, let the event formality, season and venue of the wedding be your guide. Lastly, you should feel comfortable and confident in whatever outfit you choose—and definitely don't feel confined to matronly styles. There are plenty of chic and contemporary MOB dresses on the market, from off-the-shoulder gowns to sequin-embellished jumpsuits (or you could even rock a mother-of-the-bride pantsuit as a stylish alternative).

Ready to get started? We've got all the advice and inspiration you need to find the perfect mom-of-the-bride outfit. And if you're looking by season, check out our editor-curated MOB dress guides for spring, summer, fall and winter:

Keep reading to discover 32 timeless and chic mother-of-the-bride dress options you can shop instantly, below.

In this article:

Simple Mother-of-the-Bride Dresses

Pryce Off-the-Shoulder Column Dress

Modest meets insanely fashionable in this silky Amsale gown featuring a column silhouette and off-the-shoulder neckline. Choose from three different hues in standard and plus sizes to suit your style and body type.

Size range: 0-24W | Length: Maxi | Color options: Dark Green, Navy, Neutral

Significant Other Kelsie Gown

There's no need to go over the top with embroidery and embellishments if that's not your vibe. Minimalistic mamas, you'll look breathtaking in this black mother-of-the-bride gown with a singular voluminous sleeve. Better yet, you can save big by renting this fancy MOB dress at Rent the Runway.

Size range: 2-12 | Length: Maxi | Color options: Black

Ted Baker Eleanar Mock Turtleneck Midi-Dress

Effortlessly elegant in every way, this modern mother-of-the-bride dress boasts a sophisticated turtleneck and silky midi silhouette. The dark blue hue is perfect for evening functions, while the bright coral shade will stun at daytime parties. Complete the look with silver or gold jewelry and a bedazzled clutch.

Size range: 2-14 | Length: Maxi | Color options: Dark Blue, Coral

Azazie Cecliy Mother-of-the-Bride Dress

Like to keep things short and sweet? Then this is the dress for you. No matter which of the 21 colors you choose, you'll walk into the ceremony looking sophisticated and ready to party. The asymmetrical neckline and pleated bodice add a stylish finishing touch to the basic silhouette.

Size range: Custom, 0-20 | Length: Knee | Color options: Taupe, Dark Navy, Dusty Sage and more

Phase Eight Nori Tapework Lace Fitted Dress

Modest doesn't have to mean boring. Take this simple-yet-stylish wedding guest dress for the mother-of-the-bride. The floral appliques create a polished appearance, while the cap sleeves and knee-length silhouette make it suitable for cocktail attire.

Size range: 2-16 | Length: Knee | Color options: Navy/Ivory, Ivory/Taupe

Kiyonna Mademoiselle Lace Cocktail Dress

Covered in timeless lace, this plus-size mother-of-the-bride dress is a cocktail-worthy dress for weddings all year round. Choose your favorite hue from six colorways, including this lovely berry hue. The three-quarter sleeves add even more class to the understated silhouette.

Size range: 10-32 | Length: Midi | Color options: Berry Bliss, Navy, Onyx and more

Formal Mother-of-the-Bride Dresses

Teri Jon Taffeta Shirtwaist Gown With Abstract Organza Skirt

Hear us out: shirt dress, but make it fancy. We've never seen anything quite like this Teri Jon evening gown. Metallic hues blend together to create a formal dress with a nautical feel, thanks to the ocean-link print. (Oh, and it has invisible pockets too!)

Size range: 2-22 | Length: Maxi | Color options: Silver Multi

Connected Apparel Pauline Dusty Rosewood Cocktail Jacket Dress

There's a lot for mom to love about this sophisticated mother-of-the-bride dress, from the scalloped lace fabric to the graceful love sleeves. Another plus? It comes with an attached matching jacket (which just saved you a shopping trip!).

Size range: 4-24W | Length: Knee | Color options: Dusty Rosewood

SHO Sequin Deep V-Neck Column Gown

This mother-of-the-bride dress is perfect for formal functions all year round. It comes with a striking v-neckline and rich green shimmery sequins.

Size range: XXS-XL | Length: Maxi | Color options: Jungle Green

Tadashi Shoji Sequin Floral One-Shoulder Gown

Tadashi Shoji is a good name to look out for if you're on the hunt for a designer dress. Moms who want to give a little drama, consider vivid hues and statement features. This designer MOB dress has all of that and more, including the most beautiful floor-length cape.

Size range: 00-16 | Length: Maxi | Color options: Caribbean

Mimine AG Rebel Gown

An event as special as your child's wedding doesn't come around every day. With that said, feel free to splurge on a gorgeous gown that you absolutely love. This black-tie and formal-approved number is absolutely showstopping, thanks to the luxe crepe satin fabric, structured sleeves and long maxi skirt.

Size range: 14-24 | Length: Maxi | Color options: Royal Blue

Halston Adira Cape Sleeve Shimmer Gown

Bloomingdale's is a luxury boutique that sells dresses for weddings and formal events. This gown's shimmering sequins and dramatic cape sleeves are a match made in heaven—just like your child and their soon-to-be spouse.

Size range: 0-16 | Length: Maxi | Color options: Sky Blue

Badgley Mischka Navy Drama Ruffle Gown

Looking for something a bit more traditional? Opt for this effortlessly elegant maxi dress with billowing ruffles for the mother-of-the-bride. Add some sparkle with a blinged-out pair of heels and silver accessories.

Size range: 0-16 | Length: Maxi | Color options: Navy

Sachin & Babi Blakely Gown

Here's another one of the best mother-of-the-bride dresses you can buy online. This gorgeous gown is made from double-stretch Mikado for a streamlined, comfortable fit. Sheer stretch tulle and cap sleeves at the neckline add an eye-catching detail, giving the illusion of a strapless look. A statement hibiscus flower is the icing on the cake.

Size range: 0-22W | Length: Hi-Low | Color options: Navy

Beaded Mother-of-the-Bride Dresses

Adrianna Papell Beaded 3D Floral Dress

Beaded dresses are some of the most popular mother-of-the-bride styles, and it's easy to see why—sparkly sequins and beading just scream "celebration." This richly colored sheath is adorned with beadwork and gorgeous 3D florals for a breathtaking ensemble for mothers of the bride.

Size range: 0-20 | Length: Maxi | Color options: Cassis

Adrianna Papell Beaded Short Sheath Cocktail Dress in Black

This elegant black mother-of-the-bride dress proves that short MOB dresses can look just as formal as floor-length gowns. The classic silhouette and knee-length skirt are ideal for weddings in the spring, summer, and fall.

Size range: 0 - 20 | Length: Knee | Color options: Black

Mac DuggalAsymmetric Sequin Gown

Carrying a touch of Old Hollywood glamour, this shimmering gown by Mac Duggal will fit right in at an upscale black-tie affair. We also have to call out the floor-sweeping skirt and the chic asymmetric neckline.

Size range: 0-16 | Length: Maxi | Color options: Olive

XSCAPE Petite-Beaded Sleeve Gown

Here's a fashionable petite mother-of-the-bride gown to rock for your child's wedding. The beaded sleeves make the otherwise traditional gown pop, making this lustrous mother-of-the-bride gown ideal for fall and winter weddings.

Size range: 4P-16P | Length: Maxi | Color options: Black Nude Silver

Alex Evenings Lace Cocktail Dress with Jacket

If sophisticated is what you're going for, consider this sequined ensemble from Alex Evenings available in plus, standard and petite sizes. Pairing a sleeveless cocktail dress with a matching jacket doesn't just make planning your outfit a whole lot easier—it also prepares you for changing temperatures throughout the day. Add a metallic heeled sandal or pump, then you're all set to party.

Size range: 6P-24W | Length: Midi | Color options: Navy

Aidan Mattox Beaded Column Gown

Saks is easily one of the best department stores for buying a mother-of-the-bride dress. For starters, just look at this gorgeous beaded gown. The column silhouette skims the figure while still offering plenty of room to move. Even better, it'll look great paired with heeled or flat sandals—whichever helps you feel your best on the dance floor.

Size range: 0-16 | Length: Maxi | Color options: Rose Gold

Phase Eight Talia Beaded Midaxi Dress

This embellished mother-of-the-bride dress will accentuate your figure but still feel light and airy. And with a refined V-neckline, chic wrap-bodice and pretty flutter sleeves, you'll be getting compliments all night long.

Size range: 4-14 | Length: Midaxi | Color options: Emerald

Floral Mother-of-the-Bride Dresses

Mac Duggal Asymmetrical Ruffled A-Line Halter Gown

You'll stun from all angles wearing this eye-catching floral mother-of-the-bride dress. We're equally obsessed with the chic tie halter neckline and the artistic botanical print that looks straight out of a painting. Better yet, the flowing skirt allows for breathability on hot days.

Size range: 2-12 | Length: Maxi | Color options: Assorted (Pink)

Mac Duggal Floral Print Chiffon Puff-Sleeve Tiered Hem Dress

We're simply in love with the vibrant florals on this romantic mother-of-the-bride gown. The flowy silhouette and short puffed sleeves hit the perfect playful note for spring and summer celebrations,

Size range: 4-24 | Length: Maxi | Color options: Pink Multi

Adrianna Papell Plus-Size Floral Printed Jumpsuit

A jumpsuit isn't an unusual mother-of-the-bride outfit choice, especially if the wedding is taking place during the day or outdoors. This super-cool MOB attire gives the appearance of a flowing floral maxi from the back, while the front reveals cropped jersey pants with a pretty chiffon overlay. Wear it to a garden celebration with block heels or wedges.

Size range: 0-26 | Length: Maxi | Color options: Black Multi

Lulus Divinely Blooming Floral One-Shoulder Midi Dress

Lulus might not be the first site that comes to mind when you think "mother-of-the-bride outfit," but there's a great selection of budget-friendly dresses on the site that could definitely work. This one-shoulder botanical style would look incredible with a pair of strappy stilettos and statement earrings.

Size range: XS-XL | Length: Midi | Color options: Blue Multi

Kiyonna Wildflower Embroidered Dress

To round out our floral picks, we had to include one of our favorite botanical styles. Embroidered with colorful wildflower motifs, this mother-of-the-bride dress features sultry velvet touches, sheer details and a ruffled hemline for extra whimsy.

Size range: 10-32 | Length: Knee | Color options: Onyx, Blush, Moonlit Garden

Casual Mother-of-the-Bride Dresses

ELOQUII Knot Front Pleated Skirt Dress

Looking for casual mother-of-the-bride dresses? Laid-back attire doesn't have to be completely toned back. Instead, opt for something that feels dressy and versatile. This vibrant plus-size dress with a pleated skirt does the trick. And look at all of those gorgeous colorways to choose from!

Size range: 14-28 | Length: Knee | Color options: Aventurine, Violent Indigo and more

Banana Republic Valentina Maxi Dress

Slip into this sumptuous slip mother-of-the-bride dress and you won't have any regrets. The best part about this fashion-forward number? There's a bold belt that fits beautifully around the waist and a cute mock neck above. Either way, you'll look incredible in this magnificent maxi.

Size range: XXS-XXL | Length: Maxi | Color options: Wheat Botanical Print

Hutch Miah Floral Tiered Ruffle Gown

The best part about this dress for the mother-of-the-bride? It has stunning shades and cute cap sleeves, great for every wedding season! It has a V-neckline, a tiered ruffle skirt, plus a trendy floral print that covers the entire silhouette.

Size range: 0-8 | Length: Maxi | Color options: Black Watercolor Floral

Calvin Klien Petite Chiffon Bell-Sleeve Sheath Dress

If it's a casual daytime wedding, you'll need an appropriately casual outfit. This petite modern sheath dress fits the bill (plus it comes in a versatile shade of blue). The long bell sleeves with flared cuffs instantly elevates the look.

Size range: 0P-12P | Length: Knee | Color options: Indigo

Sugarlips Vanya Floral Asymmetrical Celia Ruffle Midi Dress

Headed to a destination wedding? This casual mother-of-the-bride dress would fit right in at a seaside soirée. The short puffed sleeves will keep you warm if there's an ocean breeze, while the all-over ruffles and romantic floral print will complement any beachside backdrop.

Size range: XS-L | Length: Midi | Color options: Green Multi, Pink Multi

Azazie Dorothea Mother-of-the-Bride Dress

Here's a tea-length mother-of-the-bride dress you can easily pull out of your wardrobe time and time again. There are over 40 different colorways to choose from, and you can request custom sizing, so it's ready to wear right away. The subtle scoop neck and sheer lace sleeves are just some of the things we love about this A-line dress.

Size range: Custom, 0-30 | Length: Tea | Color options: Cabernet, Black, Dark Navy, and more

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