Fri. Jun 21st, 2024

Top 13 Black Funeral Dresses for 2024: A Guide to Funeral Style Etiquette

By MrSmith Mar15,2024
Top 13 Black Funeral Dresses for 2024: A Guide to Funeral Style Etiquette

Losing a loved one is a difficult and emotional time, and deciding what to wear to a funeral can add an extra layer of stress. One classic and appropriate choice for funeral attire is a black dress. Black is a traditional color of mourning and is considered respectful and somber for a funeral service.

In 2024, there are many stylish and elegant black funeral dresses to choose from. Some of the best options include a simple and timeless black sheath dress, a sophisticated black midi dress with lace detailing, or a flowy black maxi dress for a more relaxed and comfortable look. Other options include a classic black wrap dress, a chic black shift dress, or a sleek black off-the-shoulder dress. Whatever style you choose, be sure to opt for a modest and understated look to show respect for the occasion.

When attending a funeral, it’s important to follow proper funeral style etiquette. Here are some guidelines to help you dress appropriately:

1. Avoid wearing bright colors or flashy patterns. Stick to muted and subdued colors like black, grey, navy, or dark purple.

2. Choose conservative and modest clothing. Avoid anything too revealing or flashy.

3. Opt for simple and understated accessories. Minimal jewelry, neutral shoes, and a classic handbag are all appropriate choices.

4. Pay attention to the dress code specified by the family or the funeral home. Some funerals may have specific requirements for attire.

5. Dress comfortably but appropriately. You may be sitting for long periods of time or standing in a receiving line, so choose clothing that allows you to move and sit comfortably.

By following these guidelines and choosing one of the best black funeral dresses for 2024, you can show respect for the deceased and their loved ones while also looking stylish and elegant. Remember, the most important thing is to show compassion and support for those who are grieving during this difficult time.

Deciding what to wear to a funeral isn’t easy if you haven’t got a collection of funeral-friendly dresses in your wardrobe. It also can be the last decision you want to make, especially if the funeral is for someone close to you, and often people leave it to the last minute. 

It has been a tradition, and a sign of respect, to wear black to a funeral, but while some may wear a black dress, others may opt for a two-piece suit, or a skirt and blouse. 

We know funerals are about showing a sign of respect to lost loved ones, and the families of those grieving, so for those looking to follow the right dress code etiquette, we can lend a helping hand by helping you find the perfect black dress for a funeral. 

Do you have to wear black to a funeral?

It is a common tradition in the UK to wear black to a funeral, however, you don’t have to follow this. Dark colours, including navy blue, or dark grey, are also deemed acceptable, while bright colours or prints are said to be distracting from the event at hand. 

Meghan Markle attending the State Funeral of Queen Elizabeth II at Westminster Abbey on September 19, 2022© Karwai Tang
Meghan Markle attending the State Funeral of Queen Elizabeth II at Westminster Abbey in 2022

However, it is to the discretion of the lost loved one’s family, and the guests, as on some occasions families encourage guests to wear bright colours as a celebration of the person’s life. Each case is unique, but we’ve stuck to dresses for this edit. 

How we chose funeral-appropriate black dresses

  • Colour: Ok, this might be an obvious one. We filtered our search to black. Navy is also acceptable but we kept it traditional for this edit.
  • Modesty: We looked for dresses that were deemed respectable – no cut-out dresses or backless dresses in this edit.
  • Speedy delivery: In times of grief you might have a million and one things to do before the funeral and finding a dress might be a last minute chore. To make things easier all these dresses have speedy delivery options.

Why you should trust me

“I haven’t tried any of these dresses on, but I know what styles to show you, and I know from first-hand experience how overwhelming a funeral of a loved one can be. When my mum passed away in February 2021 my whole world fell apart. I remember my two sisters and I discussed what we’d wear to the funeral and I intended to wear a very plain black dress, but the night before I decided I wanted to go for something a bit more glamorous. I felt like my mum would want me to sparkle in some way, and as I was reading her eulogy I felt even more pressure. I ended up choosing a dress from my wardrobe that I had once worn to Magic Mike Live! (yes, really) but it was a velvet shift dress with long sleeves and it featured three sparkly rhinestone buttons at the neckline. It’s a lovely dress but I’m not sure I can wear it again. It’s worth bearing that in mind when you’re choosing your outfit. 

“It was a chilly day in early March so I wore the knee-length dress with black tights, black boots and a black cape coat. The service was being recorded for family and friends that couldn’t attend due to restrictions so I wore a black bow in my hair as I thought it would look nice on camera. I did feel nice on the day and “dressing up” put me in the mindset of the funeral being a celebration of my mum’s life, but everyone grieves differently and ultimately it’s about making it through the day in the best way you can. I hope you like my edit below. Sending love to you all.”

  1. Mango black funeral dress

    Mango Funeral Dress

    Sizes available: UK 4 – 26

    Shipping: £3.95 Standard Delivery or free for orders over £30

    Returns: Free within 30 days

    Mango has created this smart shirt dress, with flattering long sleeves, which makes this perfect for those attending a funeral, as it is simple, timeless yet formal. Layer with a blazer, and style with heeled boots, or heeled court shoes.

  2. lk bennett black dress

    LK Bennett Funeral Dress

    Sizes available: UK 6 – 20 (petite and regular sizes available)

    Shipping: £4.95 Standard Delivery or free for orders over £300

    Returns: 28 days

    The Sky dress is in the new LK Bennett Perfectly Petite collection, and we think you’ll agree, it’s beautifully tailored and totally timeless. It’s also kind to our planet, thoughtfully-made in Europe from a black LENZING™ ECOVERO™ viscose blend crepe.

  3. asos long sleeved black dress

    ASOS Funeral Dress

    Sizes available: UK 4 – 18

    Shipping: Free 

    Returns: Free within 30 days

    This comfortable plisse dress from ASOS is a great funeral option. The design features a midi length and long sleeves which ensures it’s warm enough for a chilly funeral service. 

  4. Structured Crepe Tailored Roll Neck Pencil Midi Dress

    Karen Millen Funeral Dress

    Sizes available: UK 6 – 16

    Shipping: £4.99 Standard Delivery or free with Karen Millen Premier

    Returns: £2 within 28 days or free with Karen Millen Premier

    Or choose Karen’s Millen’s belted black dress – Princess Kate owns a similar one in yellow. It’s structured and restrained with covered shoulders – an appropriate silhouette for a sombre occasion.

  5. New Look Curves Animal Print Satin Twist Front Midaxi Dress

    New Look Curves Funeral Dress

    Sizes available: UK 18 – 32

    Shipping: £2.99 Standard Delivery or free for orders over £50

    Returns: Free returns in store or £2.50 via post within 28 days

    Yes, this is a little bit of a gamble with it being low cut and with a subtle leopard print but at the funerals I’ve been to, black prints seems to be very respectful and the base colour on this dress is black so I think it would look very smart indeed. 

  6. M&S black funeral dress

    M&S Funeral Dress

    Sizes available: UK 6-24

    Shipping: £3.99 Standard Delivery or free for orders over £60

    Returns: Free within 35 days

    M&S has a whole host of black dresses, coats, jumpsuits and much more to shop online, from their own brands, as well as other retailers. 

    However, it is this sleek, classy and timeless black dress, which we believe is one of the most suitable for a funeral. 

  7. New Look ribbed dress

    New Look Funeral Dress

    Sizes available: UK 6 – 20

    Shipping: £2.99 Standard Delivery or free for orders over £50

    Returns: Free returns in store or £2.50 via post within 28 days

    This dress could be considered too glamorous for some – especially for a funeral. But if you’re wanting to look dressed up for the occasion, you would still be comfortable wearing this. The ribbed dress is a very flattering shape for anyone who might be looking to steer attention away from their tummy. 

  8. amazon black funeral dress

    Amazon Funeral Dress

    Sizes available: UK S – XXL

    Shipping: Free with Amazon Prime (although varies from product to product)

    Returns: Free within 30 days

    Amazon has a collection of dresses to shop, including appropriate black dresses for a funeral. 

    The long sleeve detail and stylish tea dress shape add a little extra touch to a classic black midi dress, but not too much to distract from the sad event. 

  9. Live Unlimited black dress

    John Lewis Funeral Dress

    Sizes available: UK 12 – 28

    Shipping: Free click and collect or free on orders over £50

    Returns: Free within 28 days

    For those looking for a stylish, yet formal, dress to wear to a funeral, we have found it. This Curve creation features a button-up design, but it’s not too revealing that it’s inappropriate for the formal occasion.

  10. River Island black belted shirt dress

    River Island Funeral Dress

    Sizes available: UK 6 – 18

    Shipping: £4 Standard Delivery or free on orders over £50

    Returns: Free within 28 days

    River Island’s black shirt dress is modest yet modern, proving you don’t have to buy something super grown-up to attend a funeral. This dress could be worn time and time again and you can replace the belt if you didn’t want something so dramatic. 

  11. Boden black funeral dress

    Boden Funeral Dress

    Sizes available: UK 6 – 22 (Petite, Regular, Long)

    Shipping: Free over £50

    Returns: Free within 90 days

    Boden’s midi dress would look smart and dressy enough if you wanted to wear it again for an evening. It would also look very smart with thick black tights and a pair of black ballet flat shoes. 

  12. Phase Eight Kellia Black Knitted Midi Dress

    Phase Eight Funeral Dress

    Sizes available: UK 8 – 18

    Shipping: £2.95 Standard Delivery or free for orders over £150

    Returns: Free within 28 days

    For those who aren’t sure what to wear to a funeral, this knitted dress is a good style to follow. The black Kellia dress is designed with a V-neckline, long sleeves and button detailing and best styled with tights and boots for the winter months.

  13. hobbs black dress

    Hobbs Funeral Dress

    Sizes available: UK 6 – 22

    Shipping: £3.95 Standard Delivery or free for orders over £150

    Returns: Free within 28 days

    While a long-sleeved dress is often preferred at a funeral, this chic sleeveless design can be worn on its own or layered under a blazer, or over a blouse or shirt, which is why it is one design I recommend.  

Do you have to wear a hat to a funeral?

Similar to the colour scheme, this option is totally dependent on your preference. 

Wearing a hat, veil, or fascinator, is typically deemed a sign of respect, but it is not essential.

The general rule of thumb is subtlety is key so as not to distract from the funeral. 

What should you avoid wearing to a funeral? 

Funerals are a time you must show your respect, which is why casualwear is deemed inappropriate. 

We recommend avoiding short skirts, or dresses, as well as low-cut and revealing garments if possible. Some may also avoid sleeveless, off-the-shoulder dresses, or designs with spaghetti straps, in favour of covering their shoulders in a place of worship. 

T-shirts, vest tops, tracksuits, sandals or flip-flops are an absolute no-go.  

Some may choose to wear black thick leggings instead of tights under a dress, or jeans instead of trousers, and that is a decision only you can make. 

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By MrSmith

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