17 Elegant Grandmother of the Bride or Groom Dresses

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grandparents

Photo by Rebecca Yale Photography

Of all the dresses involved in a wedding, the bride's gown is obviously the most significant. But your grandchild's wedding day is also a special moment for you to celebrate, and that means putting on your nicest frock. No matter how large or small the ceremony is going to be, you deserve to look and feel your best for this momentous occasion. After all, as the matriarch of the family, you're a true guest of honor!

From sleek eye-catching designs to formal jumpsuits and classic floor-length gowns, we've researched a slew of stylish dresses well-suited for a front seat at the ceremony. We've narrowed down the best dresses available by taking materials, size range, style, budget, and overall quality into consideration. For something simple and sweet, we love the M.M. LaFleur The Emily Dress and the Azazie Cornish Dress. For an utterly elegant ensemble, our favorite find is the Tadashi Shoji Odette Sequin Dress.

Read on for the best dresses for the grandmother of the bride or groom.

Best Set

Alex Evenings Beaded Dress & Jacket

navy set

 Courtesy of Nordstrom

If she wants something that feels subtle but polished, this matching dress and jacket with delicate beading takes the cake. The scoop neckline and midi-length hemline are flattering to boot.

Price at time of publish: $259

Best 3/4 Sleeve

J Kara 3/4 Sleeve Beaded Mock 2 Piece Dress

mock two piece

Courtesy of Amazon

The beaded overlay on this dress elevates the entire aesthetic—add in some sparkling earrings and low heels to complete your look. We love this navy number for a formal wedding.

Most Glamorous

Pisarro Nights Cold Shoulder Ankle-Length Beaded Plus Size Dress

beaded dress

Courtesy of David's Bridal

For the grandmother who desires a glitzy look, this beaded dress set checks off all the boxes for an elegant wedding outfit. With beading reminiscent of Art Deco design, this shimmering frock is for those who love a vintage-inspired style.

Best for Cold Weather

Oleg Cassini Three-Quarter Sleeve Velvet Sheath Dress

velvet dress

Courtesy of David's Bridal

If the wedding in question is happening during the cooler months of the year, a long-sleeve velvet dress is ideal. Plus, the draping on this deep blue iteration is to die for and is beyond figure-flattering.

Price at time of publish: $150 for missy in size 4

Most Simple

M.M. LaFleur The Emily Dress

navy dress

 Courtesy of M.M. LaFleur

If the ceremony is on the casual side, a simple-yet-sleek dress like this flattering option from M.M. LaFleur is a smart option. Add in a string of pearls and kitten heels for good measure.

Price at time of publish: $225

Best Pant and Jacket Set

RM Richards Ribbed Metallic Pantsuit with Necklace

set

Courtesy of David's Bridal

You can never go wrong with a coordinating set—especially in this gorgeous shade of mauve. The sheer jacket sleeves add a touch of playfulness while the sparkly metallic fabric adds some glamour. Plus, this set comes with the pictured necklace to complete your look!

Price at time of publish: $140 for missy in size 6

Most Elegant

Azazie Cornish Mother of the Bride Dress

dress

Courtesy of Azazie

A neutral-hued matching set with old-world elegance—you can’t go wrong with this classic combination. Plus, a corsage will contrast the versatile color beautifully.

Price at time of publish: $186

For a Garden Wedding

Lela Rose Sunflower Fil Coupe Draped Bodice Dress

floral dress

Courtesy of Lela Rose

Did someone say garden wedding? This floral print fil coupe midi dress is perfect for an outdoor ceremony. We love it styled with feminine sling backs or a grass-friendly block heel sandals.

Price at time of publish: $1,890

Best Shirtdress

Teri Jon by Rickie Freeman Floral Jacquard Gown

MOG Dress

Saks Fifth Avenue

The luminous jacquard pattern takes this shirtdress to a whole new level as does the bold sash around the waist. The versatility of this dress would work well year-round but we can't help but picture it at a spring black-tie wedding.

Price at time of publish: $860

For a Festive Affair

Tadashi Shoji Odette Sequin Dress

metallic gown

Courtesy of BHLDN

What better way to celebrate than in a floor-length sparkling gown? This shimmering metallic dress is destined for the dance floor and is an especially fitting choice for a New Year's Eve wedding.

Price at time of publish: $430

For a Winter Wedding

Jenny Yoo Ryland Velvet Maxi Dress

Jenny Yoo Ryland Velvet Maxi Dress

Anthropologie

We’ve said it once and we’ll say it again: velvet reigns supreme. This striking style in sumptuous blue velvet features long sleeves, a flattering ruched bodice, and an alluring deep-V neckline. Wear yours with shoulder-grazing earrings for a perfectly polished look.

Price at time of publish: $295

Best Bright Color

Emilia Wickstead Switzy Cape-Effect Crepe Midi Dress

pink dress

Courtesy of Net-a-Porter

For a touch of drama, go with this baby-pink midi dress. The cape-effect sleeves, elongating padded shoulders, and body-skimming silhouette all come together for a truly wow moment. It pairs beautifully with both colorful and metallic accessories.

Price at time of publish: $2,225

Best One-Shoulder

Pryce Off-the-Shoulder Column Dress

For formal occasions, consider this silky stunner from Amsale. The one-shoulder neckline is sophisticated and the deep emerald green is regal—the perfect combination for a very important wedding guest!

Price at time of publish: $495

Best Splurge

Oscar de la Renta Belted Embellished Tulle-Trimmed Stretch-Silk Crepe Maxi Dress

gown

Courtesy of Net-a-Porter

Although it's the happy couple's big day, it's also a big day for you, so, why not splurge on a designer dress? This Oscar de la Renta gown is the epitome of sophistication and elegance and would be a smart and stylish addition to anyone's formal wardrobe.

Price at time of publish: $4,990

Best Beadwork

Pisarro Nights Beaded Mesh Dress

Pisarro Nights Beaded Mesh Dress

Nordstrom

If the grandmother of the bride has a glamorous flair about her, this sparkling option is a top-notch pick. Thanks to the twinkling beadwork, you'll be sure to shimmer and shine all the way from the aisle to the dance floor. Add in metallic shoes to finish.

Price at time of publish: $268

Best Jumpsuit

Twinset Pleated V-Neck Jumpsuit

jumpsuit

Courtesy of Farfetch

Sometimes a jumpsuit feels more exciting than a dress. Ipso facto, this one-piece is a total winner. It features an elongating neckline, three-quarter length sleeves, pleated wide leg, and a waist-defining belt for a seriously chic look. Even better? it retails for under $300.

Price at time of publish: $349

Most Classic

Oleg Cassini Glitter Lace Knit Two-Piece Set

two piece set

Courtesy of David's Bridal

There’s something so enduringly elegant about a matching set, which is why this silver-hued lace jacket and dress are a perfect pairing for a grandmother of the bride.

Price at time of publish: $130

What to Look for in a Grandmother of the Bride or Groom Outfit


When shopping for your grandmother of the bride or groom dress, first consider the wedding venue, season, and formality. Black-tie events call for floor-length gowns and embellished fabrics, while tea-length dresses in light and airy prints are more suited for an outdoor spring ceremony. While you should embrace your personal style, it's worth thinking about the wedding's color scheme and aesthetic. Not sure what dress silhouette will work best for you? We recommend experimenting with universally flattering silhouettes like a-line, fit-to-flare, and wrap dresses to find your perfect fit

FAQ
  • What are some popular choices for grandmother of the groom/bride outfits?

    Some popular choices for grandmothers are two-piece sets, pantsuits, sheath dresses, tea-length frocks, long-sleeve silhouettes, and embellished gowns and cocktail dresses.

  • What colors should I avoid wearing?

    If the bride is wearing white, it’s best to avoid wearing white or any color that closely resembles white–such as cream, ivory, or beige. If you're unsure about your dress choice, run it by the couple before purchasing.

  • What are some of the most comfortable grandmother of the groom/bride outfits?

    The most comfortable outfit for you will mostly depend on your body type. Certain silhouettes like sheath and a-line are flattering and easy to wear while pantsuits and two-piece sets can offer more freedom and flexibility. Keep in mind that you'll be sitting down for the ceremony and reception so make sure your outfit feels just as comfortable sitting as it does standing.

Why Trust Brides

Nicole Kliest is a fashion, travel, and food & wine writer based in New York City. With over nine years of experience in the digital publishing industry, her work has appeared on sites including Who What Wear, The Zoe Report, Cools, Popsugar, Harper's Bazaar, Elle.

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