TTKS’s writers take their mums on a shopping spree at some of Scotland’s top occasionwear boutiques – will they agree with each other’s choices?
TTKS editor Beth Forsyth & her mum, Agnes
My brother got married in May 2021, a couple of weeks after the easing of the second lockdown. The timing meant that shopping online was the only option in the run-up and my mum was robbed of her chance to look IRL for her mother-of-the-groom outfit. She doesn’t enjoy virtual shopping, so she jumped at the chance to browse the rails of a couple of occasionwear boutiques with me.
First up, we checked out Patricia Forbes in Broughty Ferry. I wasn’t surprised by her pick – a cobalt floral dipped-hem number from Irresistible by Veromia: blue is one of her favourite colours, and it offered flattering illusion coverage of her arms (an area she doesn’t like highlighting) as well as a leg-lengthening style of skirt.
I am a sucker for polka-dot, so I selected a dress from Veni Infantino’s latest collection and, although she loved the wrap-collar and contrast cuffs, I had to work hard to convince her that – at 5ft2in, just like me – she could get away with the slightly longer length of hem, or indeed have it taken up a bit.
At Joyce Young Design Studios, we perused the Glasgow designer’s new collections, Signature and Casual Chic. Both offer maximum post-wedding wearability, something that is important to my mum.
I opted to put her in an elegant Signature duck-egg slit-front dress and coat combo and although she admitted she probably wouldn’t wear the coat all that often afterwards, she loved that the timeless look of the dress would see her through future family occasions.
Her own choice at Joyce Young was a loosely tailored Casual Chic bluebell dress: she was a big fan of its relaxed yet smart cut that offered plenty of room around the midriff (yes, we both enjoy our food!).
Staff writer Nicole Conner & her mum, June
Every newly bought item of clothing is welcomed into our home with a customary fashion show, and is paraded around the living room in order to earn the family seal of approval. So, when I invited my mum to pick two dresses that she’d be happy to wear as mother of the bride, she immediately asked for my opinion, and I did the same to her.
I wanted to choose dresses that would make her feel confident but also comfortable, and a navy dress from the John Charles Summer 2022 collection at Catwalk seemed to fit the bill perfectly. The gathering round the middle is very flattering and helps give an hourglass shape, while the hemline is just ideal for making us shorter women appear taller.
I think my mum looks lovely in blue, so my eye was drawn to Bombshell London’s Grace dress. As well as being a stunning colour, it has a tie front that would flatter her shape, while the structure of the skirt adds a touch of 1950s elegance.
My mum picked a pale blue dress, also by John Charles from Catwalk, because of the ruffle on the skirt. She said she thought this would be a chic way to conceal the areas she didn’t want to draw attention to, while the leaf design on the shoulders added just the right amount of glam.
Her second choice was a beautiful outfit from Bombshell London – a matching gold-patterned dress and coat. She felt the coat would be a perfect cover-up for a wedding but still versatile enough to become a wardrobe staple after the big day.
Editorial assistant Olivia Simpson & her mum, Juliet
With every passing day, I grow more and more like my mother. A love of good food and great wine, a penchant for leopard print and an increasingly competitive tennis rivalry have seen us merging into one in recent years. And I’m okay with that: she’s great.
So it’s strange that, when it came time to discuss this article with her, we had very different opinions on what would look good on her. “Try a pattern!” I implored. That got a quick no. “How about something a bit more glam – even sparkly?” Stony silence.
Likewise, the subtle glamour of the ice gold Gill Harvey wrap dress from Frox of Falkirk did show her the value of widening her sartorial horizons. Plus, it’s a V-neck, which will forever be the go-to option for us Simpson women.
Mum’s choices are much more classically her, and to be quite honest, it’s hard to argue with them: they’re beautiful dresses and I know fine well the cut and colour of both would flatter her fabulously. My mum is pretty tall, and as a fellow long-limbed lady, I know that the high-low hem on this blue Couture Club dress from Serendipity would really show off those pins.
As for the gorgeous deep green Joseph Ribkoff wrap dress, available at Frox of Falkirk, it’s as if Mum dreamt it up herself: perfect colour, ideal shape and easy to accessorise. It’s shown here with a black bag and shoes, but I reckon gold or silver would glam it up a treat.
That being said, I’m certain Mum would try to sneak some leopard in there, and to tell the truth, so would I – I am my mother’s daughter, after all.