We live in a world where anything goes. And yet I’m still surprised at some of the things people wear; jeans and sweatshirts to church, shorts at a fine restaurant on a Saturday night, and flip flops for all occasions. But when it comes to funerals, most of us sense that there are some rules of protocol that should be followed but most have decided to break.
1. BRIGHT COLORSWell colour blocking is stuck in people’s minds and wardrobes but it is too noisy for a place like a funeral. Funerals are not a time to be conspicuous; it’s a time to blend in with the other mourners.
2. BRIGHT PRINTS OR ANYTHING FLASHY OR GLITTERYDo not cause a sore eye for a mourning somebody or cause people to be asking for tissue to wipe their tears. Only to find out it is your loud print amongst dark clothes that is hurting their eyes.
3. CLEAVAGE- ALL OUT TO SEELadies, let us respect the deceased, family and friends. A burial day of somebody is not a day for you to show off how big your heart is. Please invest on scarves to go with your low cut tops or dresses.
Please cover up..
4. TOO LITTLE OF A BLACK NUMBERWe appreciate the fact that you respected the colour scheme and pulled out a black dress but showing off too much of your legs is disrespectful. Why should people be wondering if you are wearing your baby sister’s top or you just came from a club(where a born again Christian should not go) when they are supposed to be paying respects to the deceased? Take a cab or drive to Jozi, black leggings, thick tights or magusha cost less than R30. If that garment you call a dress is 8 fingers above your knee it is a top or t-shirt to be worn with a skirt.
Older women tend to use funerals as an opportunity to wear short skirts with those fancy printed black stocking. What happened to 3 quarter or knee length skirts and dresses?
5. PANTS TOO TIGHTI still do not understand why women wear pants at funerals. Now that fashion designers started making pants too tight to breath in them, women of all shapes and sizes find the oddest places to wear them. Yes there’s nothing wrong with pants at a funeral but ladies please apply modesty when wearing anything. Again do not cause others to wonder how long it took you to jump into those pants and how long you took to zip them up. Slacks are fine but put on a formal jacket or a shirt long enough to cover the shape of your behind.
6. JEANS AND SWEATSHIRTSNo seriously, that is downright wrong ladies. It is even worse than most of things we mentioned. Why do you wanna look like a teenager or young adult going for lectures. Look properly in your cupboard if you have not started a collection or one garment for funerals. Even if you would wear your jeans with a black blouse or jacket, save that look for casual Fridays at work.
7. WHITE DRESS, WHITE PANTSRemember you are going to a dusty place. Yes white symbolizes purity and peace but why would you want to steal the show like a bride in white at a funeral? This goes out to your male companions, friends or brothers as well. Brothers, save the white pants for another occasion.
8. TOO MUCH MAKE UP
9. WHO SAID NO JACKET REQUIRED?This one is for your male companions, brothers and friends. It saddens me that most men took our former president’s love for a shirt not tucked in and personalized it. They however never followed his other love for suits and ties. I don’t mean go out and buy suits for funerals, a man must have a dark coloured jacket in his wardrobe for such occasions. I mean really we go to more funerals than weddings in a year.
POINTS TO REMEMBER
· Funerals are not a time to be conspicuous; it’s a time to blend in with the other mourners.
· Support to the bereaved is more than just your presence. How you dress show your respect
· Funerals are not a place to meet Mr. Right because Mr. Right is actually Mr. Bereaved or Mr. Enticed and his mind is not clear especially if he was attracted to you because of too much skin that drew him to you.
A woman who attends a funeral dressed in a conspicuous manner shows proof of a total lack of good taste and good manners. Even if you are not a member of the immediate family, you should dress in black, or at least in whatever you own that is most dark and neutral, and you should wear no makeup. During the course of a year it is unfortunately likely that you will be obliged to attend a funeral ceremony, and you should prepare for this eventuality in planning your wardrobe, just as you prepare for the luncheon and dinner invitations (and weddings) you expect to receive.
The best choice, aside from a black suit of wool in the winter and linen in the summer, is a dark gray flannel ensemble, both worn with a black hat, gloves, shoes, and bag. .