You're probably envisioning some quality girl time as you're getting ready, so you may be surprised to find out that your future mother-in-law will likely get dressed with your partner, says Kelly Heyn, owner of SocialLife Wedding and Event Planning in New Jersey. But should she stick to tradition or mix it up with you and your wedding party? "The industry tends to keep families close together on the wedding day, so the photographers and videographers can capture special family bonding moments, like when the mother of the groom sees her son all dressed up for the first time," Heyn says.
But if your future mother-in-law is uncomfortable getting ready with a bunch of guys, or you'd like to include her in your wedding day prep, you can and should change things up. For starters, "the bride should absolutely invite her future mother-in-law to get her hair and makeup done alongside the bridesmaids and the mother of the bride," Heyn says.
After everyone's hair is coiffed and makeup is applied, the mother-in-law can then travel to the groom's location.
You can also ask her to stick around as you get dressed, but "don't set yourself up for a bad situation," warns Julie Bunkley, owner of Invision Events in Alabama. "For instance, if you know that your new mother-in-law doesn't drink alcohol but you are looking forward to some mimosas with your bridesmaids, having her there could be awkward. Make sure it makes sense for everyone."
If you do ask your future mother-in-law to join for any portion of the getting ready process but she politely declines, don't get offended. "Some mothers-in-law feel uncomfortable around that setting, as if they don't belong, while others may just have a favorite hair or makeup artist they would prefer to use," Heyn says.