Where Should Your Future Mother-In-Law Get Ready on Your Wedding Day?

Updated 11/03/15

Laura Murray Photography

It's girls-only inside your bridal suite, so you may be surprised to find out the your future mother-in-law will likely get dressed with the groom, says Kelly Heyn, owner of SocialLife Event Planning in New Jersey. But should she stick to tradition and her son, or mix it up with the 'maids?

"The industry tends to keep families close together on wedding day — i.e. the bride's family stays with bride, and groom's family stays with groom — so that 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," explains Heyn.

But if your future mother-in-law is uncomfortable getting ready with the guys, or you'd like to include her in this intimate moment, you can and should change things up. For starters, says Heyn, "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." After everyone's hair is coiffed and makeup is applied, "the mother-in-law can then travel to the groom's location," says Heyn, and "that will absolutely make her feel more included during the bridal prep."

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 and South Carolina. "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, maybe having her there would be awkward and tense for everyone. Make sure it would make sense for everyone."

And 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 mother-in-laws feel uncomfortable around that setting, as if they don't belong," explains Heyn, "while others may just have a favorite hair or makeup artist that they would prefer to use."

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