When someone you know and cared about has passed away, your funeral clothing might not be the first consideration on your mind. However, wearing appropriate clothing to a funeral is very important for a variety of reasons. What you wear to a funeral is an intrinsic part of paying your respects to the deceased. Dressing smartly and modestly in appropriate colours can make a positive statement to family members of the deceased. By following a few simple guidelines, you can ensure that you are paying your respects in the right way.
So, what is the right way to dress for a funeral?
Standard dress code for funerals
Most people are familiar with the standard black clothes for men and women who attend a funeral, but the reality is a little more complex than that. Dressing modestly and covering your body is a sign of respect. For women, wearing a knee-length dress and smart blouse paired with a demure black cardigan is acceptable attire that will be appreciated. Men should dress smartly and avoid casual clothes, such as jeans or t-shirts.
Different cultures require different dress codes
In the west, black has become the standard dress code for mourners, but not every culture appreciates this. For example, if you attend a Hindu funeral, white is the preferred colour for attendees. Black clothing is not considered appropriate. As with funerals in western cultures, the clothes should still be simple and modest, but it is important to consider your colour choice so that you are paying your respects to the deceased and their family in the correct way.
In Islamic tradition, dark and sombre colours are considered the correct dress code, but ladies should ensure that they wear a skirt that reaches their ankles, while men must wear a shirt and smart, formal trousers. Both men and women should cover their skin as much as they possibly can to avoid offence. At Jewish funerals, black is the customary colour for clothing, but men and women should also wear a head covering too when they attend the service.
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