Wearing dark grey or deep blue is just as appropriate as black, while brown and lighter greys are suitable for the vast majority of funeral services. However, unless specifically requested by the deceased or their family, you should avoid any bright colors such as yellows, oranges, pinks, and reds.
So anything from eggplant to navy, forest green, chocolate or deep burgundy are acceptable. We, too, have been to funerals where guests wore bright or pastel colors, and no one made a fuss.
Avoid dressing in casual clothing, such as athletic wear, tank tops, or shorts. Skip the flip-flops, tennis shoes, sneakers, or boat shoes. Remove the neon necktie, purse, or accessory. Shy away from wearing jeans, even black ones, because they are considered too casual for a funeral.
When arranging a colourful funeral, you can ask guests to wear colours of their choice or simply stick to one colour which may have been your loved one's favourite. We suggest giving attendees the option of wearing vibrant colours or dressing in traditional funeral colours, should they feel more comfortable doing so.
Why you shouldn't wear red to a funeral. Wearing red to a funeral can be a sign of disrespect. It will give others a completely wrong impression if you wear a bright and bold colour to a funeral, as this goes against the dark, muted colours associated with sadness and mourning.
It's the color of celebrations and positive energy. Wearing red to a funeral would be considered inappropriate because it would clash with the somber atmosphere and be viewed as disrespectful. In some eastern cultures, red is also seen as a positive color, but it carries different connotations.
If you wear makeup, you'll want to keep things minimal for a funeral. Stick to light, natural colors and a nude lipstick. Avoid anything featuring bright colors, glitter, or unnatural hues.
In fact, it can be considered disrespectful and unlucky to wear purple if you are not attending a funeral, as the color has a sacred, devotional meaning to it. In Thailand, purple defines sorrow, and is reserved for widows to wear while mourning the death of their spouse.
If you can't wear black, some staple colors to wear at a funeral are dark and muted tones such as navy blue, charcoal, deep greys, maroons, deep purple, etc.
Stay away from colors like pink, orange, red, yellow or light blue. Navy blue or another dark understated solid color (burgundy, dark gray) can work as well. If at all possible, avoid boldly patterned or metallic ties.
What is appropriate clothing for a funeral? Traditionally, funeral etiquette suggests men and women wear black clothing that's conservative and respectful. Black or dark colours are most common, but some cultures expect mourners to wear a less traditional funeral colour.
You Don't Have To Wear Black
However, colors like dark grey, dark blue, darker green, white, and beige can be appropriate. If you don't own any black clothing, you may always opt for a subtle hue that is appropriate for formal settings. In addition, stay away from anything with distracting patterns or prints.
At the traditional funeral most Australians are familiar with, it is respectful to wear smart, well-pressed clothes in a dark colour. Black has long been typically worn by mourners at a traditional funeral, but dark shades such as navy or grey are also appropriate. A smart work suit or outfit is usually acceptable.
For women, adding color can be done through patterns and floral designs. Much like with men's funeral attire, color should be used to subtly accent your outfit. Try to make sure that your outfit does not have overly bright colors or wild patterns that draw attention.
Your clothing does not have to be all black. It's common for funeral attendees to wear navy blue, dark grey, violet, and many other colors. Men's funeral attire should stick to wearing a suit with an ironed white dress shirt and dark tie to match.
Lavender is a soft and graceful color that makes for a stunning floral display at funerals. It is also one of the featured colors in the sympathy collection of flowers offered by Avas Flowers.
Pink: admiration, appreciation, elegance, grace, love (often used at the funerals of women or children)
Black is considered the mourning color, although historically it was white. Widows may wear purple when mourning the death of their spouse.
However, there are some funerals where black is specifically prohibited – at the request of the deceased or their loved ones. Alternatively, you might not have black attire to hand in time to pay your respects and so you're in need of alternative ideas.
Small sterling silver, gold, or jeweled pieces are also usually a fine choice if they are not distracting. Religious jewelry, such as a simple cross, would also be appropriate. But, it's best to avoid any jewelry that might swing, clank together, or cause a disturbance to others.
Depending on the color of your suit or dress clothes, make sure you wear the appropriate colored shoes to match. Brown shoes go best with a blue, brown, or light grey suit. Black shoes match with a black suit, dark blue, or dark grey suit. Also, make sure to spend a few extra minutes cleaning and shining your shoes.
Makeup should be kept simple. Foundation, a bit of blush and black eyeliner should suffice. Avoid bright lipstick, if any at all. As with clothing, you're makeup should not make you stand out.