No one wants to be in the situation of having to decide what to wear to a funeral. Therefore, it can feel rather daunting when you are in that precise situation. Getting ready to attend a funeral is an event filled with emotions regardless of whether it is for a loved one, friend, direct family member, mentor, or colleague who has died—selecting funeral attire is always the last thing that comes to mind. At Funeral Caring USA, we created this guide to make the process of choosing your clothing as straightforward and stress-free as possible.
Additionally, you may not have time to purchase new clothing for the occasion, mainly if the funeral is sudden, and shopping is the last place you want to be while mourning. Thus, a smart place to start is with your clothing. When rummaging through your clothes, search for an ensemble that is respectful of the deceased while still allowing you to feel comfortable and authentic.
While funerals traditionally require all-black attire, this is not always the case. Funerals are a time to respect the departed, not draw attention to ourselves, so avoid wearing something showy or outlandish. Instead, wear something dignified. Grieving family members sometimes request that funeral attendees wear a particular color of clothing or accessory to the event. If the family has not made such a request, it is recommended to wear an outfit that has dark or neutral colors and is modest, traditional, and subtle in design.
Bring a coat or jacket with you since it can get chilly at the venue, and you’ll be able to use the pockets to have tissues on hand during the ceremony. Funerals can be difficult to endure, so ensure a level of comfort with your clothing. Make sure your shoes are both stylish and comfy, as you’ll be doing a lot of walking during the day. Rather than wearing your favorite sneakers or strappy sandals, your best option is a pair of closed-toe modest heels or a pair of elegant flats. For the gentlemen, dress shoes suffice.
If the funeral you’re attending is more traditional, hats and hair accessories can add a wonderful finishing touch. However, keep the headwear size reasonable, as no one wants to be distracted by a huge hat during the service.
Although you should typically avoid bright colors and bold prints unless specifically requested, you should also avoid too revealing or extremely casual clothing, such as torn jeans, sheer blouses, or anything with inappropriate detailing.
Try to keep it simple when it comes to accessories. Consider a clutch or a smaller purse instead of reaching for your go-to oversized handbag. The same rule applies to jewelry: keep it simple and elegant. Look through your jewelry collection for some traditional silver and gold pieces.
Sunglasses are one item that people are generally very tolerant with. Pack a pair in your purse or jacket pocket just in case – sorrow can act in unpredictable ways, and if things become too overwhelming or you don’t want to feel noticed, you can just whip out your glasses and put them on.