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Get a Grip, Mom. You'll Look Fine at the Wedding

November 13, 1998|JEANNINE STEIN

Dear Fashion Police: My youngest daughter is getting married in the middle of March. This is also my first time as mother of the bride. Needless to say, I'm happy about this event, but I'm also dreading the day. I'm afraid I'll look less than chic for the 3:30 p.m. wedding ceremony and reception. I'm hoping you could help in suggesting how I can look my very best as the mom, and fashionable too. Any recommendation you could give about hairstyles, makeup and clothes will certainly be appreciated.


Dear Not: Mommie dearest, you are fretting way too much about this wedding. It's still four months away, and if you keep this up, by March you'll be spinning like the Tasmanian Devil. Of course, you want to look your best, but it won't be that difficult. This isn't rocket science.

First, talk to your daughter about the style of her wedding--will it be casual, traditional, funky? She sets the tone for what you, her attendants and others will wear. Will the wedding and reception be indoors or out? If outside, what is the typical climate in your area at that time of year?

Finding the answers to those questions will give you some basic guidelines. Here are a few more:

* Since the wedding is in the afternoon, we're assuming (and hoping) that this is not a formal wedding with tuxedos, etc., so you are not required to wear a long gown. Look for a short (at, just above or just below the knee, whichever suits you best) dress or dressy suit in a nice fabric that doesn't have a lot of sheen. A spring wedding calls for pastels or bright pastels, or subtle prints or Jacquards in those shades. Will your daughter's attendants be wearing a specific color or palette? You may want to coordinate with them. If they're in lavender, for instance, you may want to wear mauve, rose or a pale blue. If the mother of the groom is attending the wedding, you may want to check with her so you're not wearing similar outfits.

* Start shopping as early as possible to avoid last-minute panic. We all know how fun those can be. Your daughter might want to go with you and help pick something out.

* Don't forget about accessories: shoes, stockings, handbag, jewelry. Do your best to get everything at once so you won't have to keep schlepping to the stores. Cool evenings will require some kind of jacket or stole.

* Is your daughter going to hire a hair and makeup artist? It's possible they could work with you as well. Inquire about scheduling a practice run to see how your hair and makeup will look. Take your dress so they'll know what you're wearing. If makeup and hair help are not provided, visit a makeup counter or salon for a make-over. Explain the situation, bring the dress or a picture of it, and ask the artist to explain what she's doing so you'll be able to re-create it the day of the wedding.

Make an appointment with your usual hairstylist a few weeks before the wedding, also for a practice run, and then on the day of the wedding, or as close to it as you can, for the real thing.

* The most important thing to remember is whatever you wear should reflect you. Don't choose a dress or a hairstyle because you think that's how a mother of the bride should look, choose them because it's how you want to look--within the confines of the style of the wedding, of course. If you normally wear very little makeup, don't trowel it on for this occasion because you think that's how it's supposed to be. You should simply be the most beautiful version of you.

Now, armed with all of that information, there is no reason why you should dread this wonderful day. And don't forget to send us a picture.


Dear Fashion Police: For years I have worn hipster underwear. They were comfortable and looked good on me (or at least my husband liked the look). It seems that high-cut briefs have replaced hipsters--or at least I am having a hard time finding them.

With high-cuts, my underwear still shows whenever I bend over or reach. To me it's like going in public with curlers in your hair.



Dear Hope: Boy, you sure are taking us back to junior high school with that mention of hipsters. And curlers. But now we're dating ourselves.

We found some hipsters so, yes, they are still being made. Jockey makes hipster underwear in sizes 4 to 7, in 100% cotton, in prints and solids. We spotted them at Macy's, but we know the brand is carried at other major department stores, so they shouldn't be hard to find.


From the Fashion Police Blotter: Lately we've been noticing a dearth of letters from male readers. While we're trying not to take this personally (we are extremely sensitive, you know), we are worried that the menfolk out there don't think this is a column for them. Au contraire! We know you must have pressing questions on everything from trousers (to cuff or not to cuff?) to formal wear (what exactly is a stud?) to basic issues of style (is your significant other trying to change you?). So don't be shy, drop us a line.

When reporting or preventing a fashion crime, write to Fashion Police, Los Angeles Times, Times Mirror Square, Los Angeles, CA 90053, or fax to (213) 237-0732. Submissions cannot be returned. No telephone inquiries, please.

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