What It’s Really Like to be the Mother of the Bride

 In Advice

In honor of mother’s day here in the US, we teamed up with blogger Debbie of Deb’s World to find out what it’s really like to be the mother of the bride (MOB) on wedding day, especially when you have three daughters.

Mother of the bride advice.

Mother of the Bride

Having three daughters I guessed we’d be in the market for at least one wedding, if not more!  My husband always promoted the ‘ladder’ but no one took him up on the offer. The ladder was his way of saying they could elope, which would be a lot cheaper for us!

Our daughters haven’t followed in previous generation’s footsteps by marrying young.  I was 19, my mother was 20 and her mother, my grandmother, was 18.

Deb with her husband and three daughters

Debbie, her husband, and their three daughters.

Three daughters – Three Different Stories

  1. Our eldest daughter is turning 34 this year and was engaged in March 2014.  They are still engaged with no firm plans for a wedding anytime soon.  It doesn’t help that she lives in UK and we live in Australia!  They are quite happy to continue as they are.
  2. Our middle daughter is turning 32 this year.  She was engaged in December 2014 and married in November 2015 at age 30.  It was a beautiful wedding with friends and relatives traveling from UK and Australia to attend.  There were approximately 70 guests and we had a whole weekend long party.  The guests were accommodated on site and the wedding ceremony and reception were at the same location.  What fun it was for everyone! 
  3. Our youngest daughter turns 29 this year and was engaged in December 2015.  Her wedding is planned for October 2017, this year, at Fiji’s Outrigger Resort. 

So as you can see, I have been patiently waiting to be the MOB for quite some time. In the absence of news of a baby or two, my excitement at being the MOB has been high.  I took to the job with relish and luckily my daughters wanted my help.

I’m not so sure if my daughters appreciated the fact that I started a new page on my blog dedicated solely to my MOB journey.  It was fun to record the happenings and wedding plans as they unfolded.  I’m now onto my MOB #2 posts for my second MOB experience.

November wedding 2015:

Luckily the three bridesmaids, two in Australia and one in Birmingham (UK) were thrilled about the blog and kept up to date via my posts.  So right from the start in December 2014, I was involved.  My husband, Father of the Bride (FOB), and I were keen to help out financially and so we all sat down to discuss the ‘plans’.  

Throughout the planning process I was always kept in the loop. One example was the day my daughter (B2B) went shopping for her wedding dress. I was interstate with my parents so she was ‘allowed’ to send me pictures of her final two dress choices.  It’s usually a real no-no to send photos but the two bridesmaids and B2B wanted my input.  The Bridesmaid in UK was similarly kept informed. Straight after I sent back my thoughts on the two dresses, one of the Bridesmaids sent me a text saying ‘mission accomplished MOB’.  I felt very included despite not being able to be with them.

Along the same line when I was shopping for my MOB outfit, I sent photos of my final two choices to B2B and G2B for their input.  They were very helpful.

Bridesmaids:  The Bridesmaids were the voice of reason for my daughter.  They always had her back and did everything possible to keep her calm and relaxed on the wedding day.  When her hair took longer than anticipated, and she was upset, they were there to calm her down and help her through it.  I was out of my depth in this instant and they were marvellous.  Having known her for many years they knew the right thing to say to get her through it.  My daughter never complained or had a negative word to say about her friends, she truly appreciated their help.

Bridesmaids, bride, and parents of the bride.

Hen’s party: My daughter was in UK at a family wedding a month or so prior to her own wedding and caught up with her English bridesmaid and friends.  She organised a special Hen’s party over there as a surprise for B2B – it was a lovely day out with friends and completely unexpected.   We had a small party with the other two Bridesmaids once she returned home, but nothing major.  They did make her wear a Bride sash and crown, managing to get her into the spirit. 

I cannot express my thanks enough for the job the girls did in making B2B’s wedding experience the joyful event that it was.  They were helpful, inclusive, and such fun!

Mother of the bride with the mother of the groom.

Debbie as MOB  (right) with the MOG (left).

Mothers: The MOB and MOG can sometimes feel excluded and I tried to ensure that the Groom’s mother, who travelled from UK to attend, was included as much as possible. Being so far away from the action, I didn’t want her to feel left out.  I made friends with her on Facebook and sent her messages about the plans and progress.  As a small gift, I also had tote bags made up for the Bridal party, including MOB and MOG.  They were all well received too.

I collaborated with B2B about robes for her and the bridesmaids, in the colour of their dresses (yellow).  We presented these to the girls on the morning of the wedding. They were tickled pink and wore them to their hair and makeup sessions.

Bridesmaids being gifted robes on wedding day.

October 2017 wedding

This one is very small with only 15 people involved.  At one stage my daughter and her fiancé were going to elope but her sisters encouraged her to have parents, siblings and few close friends attend.  I’m much happier with that option!!

The Outrigger Resort in Fiji is all booked and will provide everything from bouquets to table decorations and the cake.  This is the package we chose and we are very happy so far. The planning is going well, with decisions made on most things.  We have a wedding planner appointed by the resort as our contact.  She is great and full of information and knowledge!

There is going to be only one Bridesmaid and we get on very well.  She is a great friend of my daughter’s and will be steadying influence as the tension mounts. It’s a completely different experience having a ‘destination’ wedding and I’m enjoying it.  There will also be a party a few weeks later for friends and relatives which the MOG is organising.

So my advice to any future MOBs out there is to talk with your bride, get to know the bridesmaids and the MOG, and get as involved as you feel comfortable.  I never offered advice to my Bride, I always let her ask me first then discussed the various options.  The only issue I put my foot down with was hiring the marquee (tent), as I wanted it.  They were concerned at the added cost but it was so worth it on the day.

Enjoy the experience as the actual day goes too quickly.

For more on Debbie’s experiences check out: Deb’s World MOB Updates
Photo Credit: Sharon Pittaway and Tim Moss


What do you think of Deb’s story? Have you ever been a MOB? As a bridesmaid, what has your experience been with the MOB? Share with us in the comments.

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Showing 16 comments
  • Keelie Briggs
    Reply

    I love how much the mother of the groom was included, I think that role is one that’s often neglected, but it’s such a huge day for them too! I love all of these stories, thanks for sharing!

    • bridesmaidsconfession
      Reply

      I totally agree with you because most groom’s take a backseat to planning and that means MOG is left behind too. That can make for hurt feelings, or worse, an aggressive MOG trying to take over the wedding! I’ve seen that happen a few times. Just like with bridesmaids, communication is key to keeping everyone involved and happy.

  • Debbie Harris
    Reply

    Thanks so much for sharing my wedding journey as Mother of the Bride!! Love it ❤️

    • bridesmaidsconfession
      Reply

      Thank you so much for taking the time to share your story! Your daughters are lucky you are one cool MOB, and mom in general.

  • Corinne Rodrigues
    Reply

    What a lovely set of photographs – such a beautiful wedding. I’m sure your MOB2 experience will be equally fun and beautiful.

    • Debbie Harris
      Reply

      Thanks Corrine, we were fortunate to have my sister and her husband take the photos for us and they were great! I’m really looking forward to the next experience!

  • Ritu
    Reply

    Great post! Lovely to hear Deb’s stories!

    • bridesmaidsconfession
      Reply

      I love following her stories so it was great to have her guest post.

  • Ola
    Reply

    Thanks for sharing this perspective. Also, good call on hiring the tent. While it’s great to let the Bride decide how she’d like her day to be, a parents’ practical suggestions can be priceless – and smart.

    • bridesmaidsconfession
      Reply

      So true. I’ve found that many parents of the couple opt to pay for some part of it to ease the financial burden. They also know what they are suggesting is something the couple will be so happy they had on the wedding day.

  • Jennifer
    Reply

    Great perspective. Having only 1 son, I will never know the MOB point of view, so it was nice to read your experiences. I do love a good destination wedding though. My niece did that years ago as a way to keep her wedding small. I think it made for a better, more intimate experience for all who were involved. It’s a great way for the two families to get to know each other when they are all staying in the same hotel together.

    • bridesmaidsconfession
      Reply

      Yes, Deb is really lucky to get to experience the best of both worlds! Who knows what MOB #3 duties will entail. So much possibility.

  • Jessica Wagenr
    Reply

    Such a fun post! I can’t wait to be mother of the bride someday! XO

    https://www.theweekenderafashionfieldguide.com

    • bridesmaidsconfession
      Reply

      Me too! 🙂

  • Brenda Tucker-Jeffries
    Reply

    Thanks for sharing. I have one daughter and my experience was different than yours. In fact it was so different that I had to write a book about it.

    • Theresa | Bridesmaids Confession
      Reply

      Awesome! What is the name of the book? I’ll have to check it out.

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