With all the turmoil, heartache and stress that goes into planning and attending a funeral, an outfit for the occasion is often the last thing on your mind. However, one woman has sparked a lively debate on funeral dressing after asking if it was okay to ditch the black for an upcoming memorial.
Nowadays many funeral invitations clearly state what kind of dress is expected, but there is an increasing trend in people opting for brightly coloured clothes over the more traditional black.
Taking to popular online forum Gransnet for advice, the woman wrote that she didn’t know what kind of outfit would be both respectful and not too outdated for an upcoming funeral.
Explaining that the funeral was for an old friend, who she described as more like family, the gran asked fellow forum users how she could still look well-dressed without sticking out from the crowd.
“I’m worrying I won’t look sufficiently in mourning. I also want to look quite nice, not like a black crow,” she said.
Read more: Making funerals a brighter part of life
Her call for help received a flurry of responses with many suggesting a simple pair of black pants and a nice top would be best for the occasion.
“Black trousers, white or pastel top is my go-to now. If it is chilly, a dark cardigan or pashmina, but never all black now unless requested as it was at a funeral I went to a couple of years ago. It is you they want to see paying your respects, not your clothes,” one person commented.
“I don’t wear black for funerals any more. I don’t mean I would wear a multi coloured rainbow, but a subtle coloured blouse or top and darkish trousers. I certainly don’t want any black at my funeral,” another said.
While others recommended brighter colours that would help to mark the event as more of a celebration rather than a time of mourning.
“I wore a smart red dress to my friend’s funeral recently though many mourners were wearing black. I don’t understand why it is necessary to wear black or dark colours to show your respect. You are showing that by attending the funeral. I have told my family I don’t want black at my send off which I hope will be a celebration of my life,” a user stated.
“For some funerals, mourners are instructed to wear bright clothes. One funeral we attended all the mourners were told to wear a rose, the favourite flower of the dear departed,” a second said.
Ditching the black for brighter hues isn’t the only funeral trend on the rise. In recent years there’s been an increased push towards alternative funerals and cremations, with everything from lively music and dancing to people requesting their ashes be turned into jewellery or their coffin be painted in bright, elaborate designs.