Post # 1
I’m still in the very early stages of planning since we aren’t getting married until I finish my masters but FMIL and I have been talking about etiquette and the first issue to come to our minds is what to do about the dress code. (BACKGROUND) my FI is a doctor’s son, very country-club, black-tie type people. They’re from NY and are very proper. They moved to the Midwest for a job opportunity when they were newly married but they still retain their propriety, especially for events like weddings. FSIL was married a year ago in an upscale country club, and it was a very formal affair. FMIL spoke to some of the extended family (who all still live in NY) and they asked about the dress code. They will be wearing suits, dresses, or at least very nice dress clothes. She asked me what I expected my family to wear, and I told her that there would be a huge dichotomy in the families, dressing up in my family means black jeans, or clean blue jeans and button ups instead of T-shirts. They will wear steel-toe boots, or at most cowboy boots. We are having the ceremony and reception at a small historic garden and house. While talking to the FMIL about the clothing she alluded that she thought my family was rather tacky, and while I sort of agree I don’t see the point in fighting them, it just causes more drama, but I feel like it is upsetting her that I conceded so easily, I guess my question is should I make it a completely casual affair or just let each family choose what they think is “wedding appropriate” and say F*** the symmetry. Honestly to me it seems like a trivial thing to argue over, but I think it is bothering FMIL who is used to more formal affairs
Post # 2
I don’t understand why she cares so much about what your family wears, tbh. I wouldn’t worry about it.
Post # 3
- Wedding: July 2014 - Prague
It’s very tacky of her to tell you your family is tacky. What a bitch!
I wouldn’t give it another thought. Seriously, how dare she!!!
Post # 4
Bride2016: Your FMIL was out of line and is acting like a snob. I’d say screw the symmetry and let your families wear what they feel is appropriate. (Unless of course the venue has a dress code of some kind).
I’d want my family to be comfortable at my wedding, and if they had to wear a suit they’d never worn or something then they wouldn’t be comfortable and happy.
Post # 5
I don’t really think she is a b**** I think she just grew up in a totally different culture, she is a doctor’s daughter, grew up in NY, married a doctor and my FI is an engineer so I think she thinks it reflects poorly on his job, they are very status concerned people. FI is a bit like her, he insisted on buying a diamond engagement ring although I said I’d prefer gemstone
Post # 6
Bride2016: I agree you should just let families wear what they are going to wear. However… if you want to try to keep the peace. Maybe you could put “cocktail attire” or something on the invitation and leave it at that. If you family still wears jeans and button downs (as that is what they feel cocktail attire is) than you “tried” so to speak. I wouldn’t go out of your way asking your family to be something they are not.
Post # 7
Bride2016: I disagree with how she said it. Let me explain as I don’t want to upset anyone, especially you.
I think if your FMIL would have said something along the lines of ‘its a wedding, its a formal affair, I just think it would be nice for everyone to have a reason to get dressed up!’
Not all weddings are formal though! But you said your wedding will be in a historic garden house-to me thats not nice jeans and cowboy boots appropriate. If you were having your wedding in a farmhouse or barn-sure! I would say semi-formal attire is appropriate for your event, but you know your family, so you do whatever you need to do to avoid drama. If your FMIL won’t let up about it-tell your FI to handle her because in the end its really none of her business what anyone wears. SHe should not judge people on that.
Post # 8
It sounds pathetic and snobby to me, but as you said that may be the way she was brought up so she isn’t entirely to blame for her view.
On that same note you can’t blame your family for their view of how to dress at a wedding, and what is dressy enough.
Personally, I think your gut feeling was right, and that this probably isn’t worth a potential fight with either side of the family.
You could give out a dress code, with some clear do’s and dont’s? But that’s a bit of effort, and frankly, I think some people will just wear whatever they want anyway.
Post # 9
She sounds snotty BUT I will say showing up to a wedding in jeans is a hugely rude faux pas in my circle as well. And my fam is not ultra blueblood or anything.
I would go at it both ways: get her to pipe down and relax her expectations, and tell your family via word of mouth to atleast spring for khakis.
Post # 10
also: after you do the above, I would officially stop worrying about it and tell FMIL to do the same. Tell her the word is out and you will not be policing peoples wardrobes. If she keeps insulting your family I would get firm,
“fmil Id appreciate it if you would stop insulting my family and we changed the topic. We will be married whether there are blue jeans in the crowd or not, and that is all that matters…. How about that weather? Isnt it lovely?”
Post # 11
If you dont care, then I dont see why she would although I’m sure it’s more about her pride among her friends/family that will be attending and how it will reflect on her than the fact that anyone would actually show up ‘inappropriately’ dressed in her eyes.
I knew that some of my family would end up wearing their best khaki’s while my father’s side would be in sharp suits so I had my mom spread the word that it was formal. And the invitation noted: ‘Formal REception’ to follow and I just hoped for the best… I don’t know if that’s an option for you.
Post # 12
thanks everyone, I really don’t want to offend anyone so I will just send it by word-of-mouth that it should be a bit formal, but honestly I don’t care too much, I think FMIL has just been trying to take control of things because she has been playing at being MOB too, my own parents have passed and sometimes I really think she assumes I need the help that parents give in wedding planning
Post # 13
- Wedding: April 2012 - Chateau Briand
What does you FI want? Does he expect it to be a black-tie affair like his sister’s or is he more comfortable with the casual attire? His opinion would be more important to me than his mother’s.
Post # 14
mixtaperomance: He wants a more formal affair, not really black-tie but at least dressy, I just told my sister that her husband and one son can be in their “church-best” her other son is in the marines so he’ll be nicely dressed in uniform haha
Post # 15
Bride2016: OK, you make these people sound they come from a different super-fancy-black-tie-country-club planet and are etiquette experts…..but my brother is a doctor and I’m an engineer and we are NOT fancy people nor are we rolling in money and some sort of Waspy definition of “class”. And I don’t think living in New York gives you superior claim to fanciness. I’m really at a loss why your FMIL seems to feel like she is some arbiter of taste and why you, as a grown up woman of common sense, would need to differ to her sense of propriety. I’m sorry if I’m overreaching and assuming overly harsh things about her, but I feel a little outrage that she has somehow presented herself as superior to your family. Somebody with a true sense of etiquette would never have called your family “tacky” to your face.
“They will be wearing suits, dresses, or at least very nice dress clothes.” That isn’t a super fancy dress code and it most definitely not black-tie. If you’re ok with your family wearing blue jeans and cowboy boots, they will not look worse than your FI’s family, they will simply look different. If you want a more cohesive look, it’s not too much to ask your family to go to the nearest Target and buy 20$ khakis, 10$ ties, and 30$ cocktail dresses. Whatever you decide will absolutely be in line with “etiquette”.