What to Wear to a Funeral

what to wear funeralWhen it comes to figuring out what to wear to a somber occasion such as a funeral, stick with your instincts and wear an outfit that is conservative and appropriate. Don’t take any style risks, and focus on showing respect. That means making sure your clothes are pressed and wrinkle-free, wearing just a touch of makeup, and keeping accessories to a minimum. The traditional color is black, and that’s what I would wear, but other dark colors -- such as navy -- are also okay.


I’ve created two funeral-appropriate outfits -- one budget-friendly dress ensemble and a pricier pants-and-blouse outfit. All of the accessories are kept simple on purpose, since this is not the occasion to draw attention to yourself with statement accessories or bright colors. Keep everything subdued and show your respect to the family of the deceased.

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Funeral Attire -- Budget Friendly

If you prefer to wear a dress to the funeral, this A-line design by Tahari is a good choice. The elbow-lengthed sleeves are perfect to wear for most of the year, and you can add a pair of black opaque tights during the winter. A classic pair of black pumps are appropriate footwear for this occasion as is a simple gold chain necklace with a small detail. For all of your personal items, put them into a black shoulder bag and remember to turn off your mobile phone.

what to wear funeral

Shown above (clockwise from top left): Tahari Seamed A Line Dress in Black ($128, nordstrom.com); XO Strand Necklace ($36, baublebar.com); MICHAEL Michael Kors Large Matilda Shoulder Bag in Black ($298, bloomingdales.com); Hue Tights Absolute Opaque ($18.50, bloomingdales.com); Vince Camuto Kain Pumps in Black ($98, zappos.com).

Funeral Attire -- Pricier Version

If you choose to wear pants and a blouse to the funeral, this outfit is classy and respectful. The blouse is made of silk and has a flattering V-neckline design and roll-tab detail, so you can wear the sleeves down or rolled up. All of the other pieces in this outfit are classic choices -- the black pants, black pumps, gold necklace, and black shoulder bag -- so you can feel confident that you will arrive looking appropriate and respectful for the occasion.

what to wear funeral

Shown above (clockwise from top left): Trouve Silk Blouse in Black ($74, nordstrom.com); Shashi Half Moon Necklace ($62, shopbop.com); Edie Shoulder Bag 31 in Silver/Black ($325, coach.com); Ryder Pant in Black ($98, jcrew.com); Cole Haan Juliana Pump 75 in Black ($148, zappos.com).


Images (clockwise from left) via nordstrom.com; jcrew.com; coach.com; baublebar.com; zappos.com

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