black dress for funeral plus size

black dress for funeral plus size

FUNERALS are difficult enough without having to stress about whether your outfit is appropriate or adheres to the dress code.

Whether it’s taking place during summer or winter, black and similar dark shades tend to be the status quo – so stick to that theme unless otherwise stated.

 Jennifer Hudson gave an amazing performance dressed all in black at Aretha Franklin's funeral

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Jennifer Hudson gave an amazing performance dressed all in black at Aretha Franklin’s funeral

Why do people wear black to funerals?

The black dress and black suit code dates all the way back to the Roman Empire when they wore black togas to symbolise mourning – it’s a Christian tradition, whereas Muslims, Hindus and Buddhists tend to wear white.

But it’s not only the shade of dress that you might need to consider, you also want to look smart to pay your respects properly.

What attire is appropriate for a funeral?

There are some basic funeral etiquette rules to follow, like never wearing anything that’s too revealing. It’s simply about dressing courteously to bid farewell to a loved one, and comfortably so that your difficult day can be as easy as possible. We recommend taking some sunglasses too.

To help take one stress away, we’ve styled some outfits that are funeral-appropriate. From suits to dresses, we’ve got you covered.

Basic

A smart black bodycon and blazer is a faultless funeral go-to.

You’ll look immaculate and respectful, while abiding by the traditional colour scheme.

Wear your blazer oversized to balance a figure-hugging silhouette – you can always take it off later on at the wake.

If you feel comfortable in heels, then wear them as they’ll smarten up your look and stop it looking too corporate.

 Key pieces to make up a respectful funeral outfit

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Key pieces to make up a respectful funeral outfit
  • Black Bodycon Midi Dress, £55 from River Island – buy here
  • Black Blazer, £39 from Topshop – buy here
  • Leather Pumps, £49.99 from Mango – buy here
  • Gina Ball Boxy Grab Bag, £32 from Topshop – buy here

Designer

Designer dresses can be the ultimate choice to combine both style and comfort – expensive fabrics feel and look good.

You can opt for an occasion hat to show a little extra effort but ensure it’s always black.

We recommend taking a smart coat too, like a classic trench, as churches can be cold, plus you’ll feel more at ease covered up.

But you don’t have to dress down for a funeral.

 If you want some staple designer pieces you can't go wrong with this selection

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If you want some staple designer pieces you can’t go wrong with this selection
  • Vivienne Westwood Anglomania Timans Dress, £245 from Flannels – buy here
  • Dune Daena Buckle Suede Heels, £55 from Selfridges – buy here
  • Black Curled Trim Organza Hat, £40 from Debenhams – buy here
  • L.K. Bennett Kaylee Trench Coat, £295 from House of Fraser – buy here
  • Peter Kaiser Black Mabel Clutch Bag, £129 from Charles Clinkard – buy here

Velvet

If you want to look smart and wear black clothing for a funeral attire but don’t want the harshness of rigid tailoring, then velvet is an immaculate option for a funeral – you can be comforted by the softer-than-soft texture.

A long dress like this one is demure but also a versatile investment for other events.

For a funeral, subtly enhance it with tonal accessories.

 A velvet dress has a softer look and feel for a funeral

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A velvet dress has a softer look and feel for a funeral
  • Velvet Midi Dress, £89 from And Other Stories – buy here
  • Pointed Ankle Boots, £135 from And Other Stories – buy here
  • Ted Baker Black Cross Body Bag, £149 from Next – buy here
  • Logo Stud Earrings, £30 from Karen Millen – buy here

Suit

Sometimes it’s nice to not stick to an all-black dress code – if you know the service will be more relaxed, then try navy and brown natural tones instead.

Out of respect, always avoid bright tones or prints.

A suit will look immaculate, ideal for a modest aesthetic.

Teamed with a cosy roll neck, you’ll feel warm and snug, assisting you through a difficult service.

If you aren’t a fan of heels, then loafers are always a smart alternative.

WHAT TO WEAR TO A FUNERAL

What to wear to a funeralWhen deciding what to wear to a funeral it is always best to go conservative. While it’s true that you don’t have to wear black, you should dress in a way that shows respect. That means avoiding bright colors, flashy prints, and glittery fabrics.

A good rule of thumb is to dress as if you are attending a serious business meeting. That means what you choose may be guided by your location, the climate, and the culture of the deceased.

What to Wear to a Funeral: Dos and Don’ts

DO:

  • Consider where and when the service will be held: A memorial service at a beach will be more casual than a service at a place of worship.
  • Use common sense: If you are attending the funeral of someone you knew to be quite formal, it is likely that the attire should be more conservative.
  • Ask for advice: It is perfectly appropriate to ask an immediate family member or the funeral director for advice on what to wear. The deceased may have specified a preference. For example, someone with a hearty sense of humor may have specified in his or her funeral plan that they would like everyone to wear green.
  • Dress to blend in: We all want to be special but a funeral is not the time to stand out. You want to be dressed along the same lines as the other mourners.
  • Consider the culture: Some cultures have special traditions when it comes to funeral attire. For example, some Asian cultures prefer white and in some African cultures, red and black are the norm. If the funeral is for someone with a distinct cultural background, it is perfectly acceptable to ask a family member if there is preferred attire.
What Not To Wear to a Funeral Hawaiian Shirts

Read more about WHAT NOT TO WEAR TO A FUNERAL

DON’T:

  • Pick this time to be a rebel: A funeral is a time for everyone to mourn. It is not a time to stand out.
  • Underdress: While you are likely to see a range of fashion choices, you are far better off if you are a bit overdressed than underdressed. Step away from the flip flops!
  • Forget why you are there: The whole point of the funeral is to show respect to the deceased. If you choose something that is respectful you will be fine.
  • Agonize: Chances are you have something that will work. Just stick to basic dark colors and cover-up. The important thing is that you are there to honor your loved one. Unless your outfit is over the top or totally inappropriate, no one is likely to even notice what you are wearing.

In general, the etiquette for funeral attire is the same for both men and women: business-type attire that is respectful and conservative. Err on the side of dressing up as opposed to dressing down. Black or another dark color is almost always appropriate. Be sure to take the weather and location of the service into consideration and consult with a family member of the deceased if you need specific advice.

While it’s true that the standard for funeral dress has become more relaxed over the years, clothing should still be respectful and conservative. Keep in mind that your goal is not to place the focus on you. The best rule of thumb for funeral attire is to dress as you would for a business meeting. Select elements that are respectful and conservative and will not cause a distraction.

What to Wear to a Funeral: Tips for Women

  • A suit with a skirt or pants in a dark, solid color is a safe choice. You do not have to wear black unless the specific culture dictates it.
  • A skirt of appropriate length and blouse or sweater is normally appropriate.
  • Flat shoes or pumps are your best choice for shoes. Open-toed shoes or sandals may be appropriate depending on the venue and climate.
  • Depending on the culture, a hat may be worn.
  • Unless there are special circumstances, jeans are usually considered too casual.

What to Wear to a Funeral: Tips for Men

  • A suit with a collared shirt and tie or slacks with a sport coat are safe choices. You are not limited to black but dark, muted colors are generally the best choice.
  • Shoes may be casual but it’s best to avoid athletic shoes or sneakers. Flip flops and sandals are probably not appropriate.
  • Avoid jeans (unless the geography or climate dictate them), short-sleeved shirts, and sneakers. Baseball caps are rarely appropriate.

What to Wear to a Funeral: Tips for Teens and Children

Teens and children should take their cue from their parents. “Church” type, age-appropriate styles that show respect are generally appropriate.

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