Your son or daughter will be saying “I do” before the end of the year. You’ll have a front row seat for all the festivities. It’s an exciting time, and your child’s big day requires a special outfit.
You don’t want a frumpy department store gown that makes you look like a house. But you don’t want to look like you are going to a high school prom, either. You want something mature, classic, attractive, flattering and comfortable.
We hear you.
Our solution: Head to a local bridal boutique. Tell the stylists what you are looking for and allow time to try on gowns of varying length, style and color. Most boutiques have designer gowns specifically for the mother of the bride (or groom) — and they can be altered to fit any size, shape or height.
We spent a day at Simone’s Unlimited: Day Spa and Bridal in Hanover dressing Smart models Sue Walters and Lenia Queen in glamorous gowns. Owner Simone Hostetter revealed a wide selection of gowns that will look stunning in all the family photographs.
About the models
Lives in: West Manchester Township
Family: Husband, Bill; son, Mark, 25; son, Adam, 27, and his girlfriend, Sabrina, 28; grandchildren: Liam, 7, and Kellen, 10 months
Job: Registered nurse at the Margaret E. Moul Home
Lives in: Conewago Township
Family: Husband, Jonathan; children: Tramayne, 23; Jonathan II, 22; Jonee, 22; Jazmine, 19; Cheyenne, 17; Mekhi, 12
Job: Human Resources Generalist, Capital Blue Cross
Know your limits before shopping. Your price point will dictate what brands and styles you should look for.
Here are a few recommendations:
$500 to $1,000: Montage by Mon Cheri, La Feme. A mother of the bride line from La Feme will be available at Simone’s Unlimited in October.
“La Femme has been a prom collection and it flies out the door,” Hostetter said. “Their design is strong, well-made and flattering on every figure.”
$350 to $550: VM by Mori Lee, Lavelle. Hostetter said Lavelle is a great option for plus-sized women. Montage by Mon Cheri also works well for women with a bigger budget.
$220 to $500: La Perle, Victoria. Price usually dictates fabric quality. Lower-priced gowns usually will not have strong corsets or as many layers of fabric as a high-end gown. Also, price also means the difference between silk and polyester. With that said, La Perle or Victoria gowns work well for women that want a more relaxed or casual fit.
If you are looking for a higher-end gown for a cheaper price, ask the boutique to see discontinued styles that might have been in stock for a couple of seasons. Boutique owners will often discount these styles.
What to avoid
Don’t wear: boxy-pant-suits, plunging necklines, princess-full skirts or head-to-toe sequins
Do wear: bolero jackets or sheer wraps, sweetheart necklines, a bodice full of beadwork or moveable fabrics
About the location
Simone’s Unlimited: Day Spa and Bridal 332 E. Middle St., Hanover; 717-630-0990; simonesunlimited.com
Store Hours: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday; 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Wednesday and Friday; 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday; by appointment only Monday; closed Sunday.
Simone’s Unlimited has been serving the Hanover area since 1997. The store offers a variety of bridal, prom, pageant, mother-of-bride, bridesmaid, cocktail and flower-girl styles. The store also carries jewelry, shoes, undergarments and other accessories to complete the ensemble.