what to wear to a funeral in the summer

What to Wear to a Funeral in the Summer?

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    What kind of attire is appropriate for a funeral during the warm summer months? This is a very significant question, even if it does sound depressing.

    When attending the funeral of a loved one, you certainly don't want to be putting yourself in danger by overheating and sweating profusely.

    It is normal to feel intimidated about what to wear to a funeral given that the majority of people do not attend very many funerals.

    The season and the specific family's preferences will both play a role in determining the appropriate level of formal attire to wear.

    It is likely that if you are trying to decide what to wear to a funeral during the summertime, the decision will be even more difficult for you because you do not want to feel overheated.

    In the event that the funeral is held outside, you will want to ensure that you are able to maintain a calm and comfortable demeanour while paying your respects. Dressing conservatively is a proper part of funeral etiquette; however, how should one strike a balance between dressing appropriately and taking into account the weather?

    If the temperature is skyrocketing, you probably don't want to wear a heavy suit or a blouse that's going to restrict your movement. What are those who are going to the funeral supposed to wear?  Here at Peter Tziotzis Orthodox Funerals, we provide religious and traditional funeral services.

    Many options will keep you cool and comfortable during your time of mourning. Here are some guidelines for what to wear to a funeral on a hot Summer day.

    FAQs About Funerals

    At the funeral, the front rows of seating are reserved for family and pallbearers. The closest family should sit in the front, with additional close family members behind them, such as cousins or grandchildren.

    Typically, members of the immediate family stand in the receiving line at a funeral. The immediate family typically includes the spouse, children, grandchildren, parents, siblings, grandparents, and in-laws of the deceased.

    When the cortege is ready to leave, the funeral director will ask everyone to make their way to their cars. The funeral director will then walk in front of the hearse for a short distance. This is a mark of respect to the deceased and also gives following cars an opportunity to join the cortege.

    The officiant (and the choir, if there is one) leads the procession in for religious services, while the celebrant or funeral director usually leads secular (non-religious) processions. The coffin follows, with honorary pallbearers in front of it if there are any.

    Direct cremation is the least expensive way to bury your loves one. It is done respectfully, and gives your and your family time to find the most personal and affordable burial option.

    What to Wear to a Summer Funeral

    Style and Cut

    Shirts with short sleeves are acceptable to wear to most funerals; however, you should avoid tops that expose an excessive amount of your chest or shoulders.

    Dresses and shorts ought to go no lower than the knees. Clothing that is too big for you will be more constricting than clothing that is too small, and wearing clothing that is too big for you can help you remain comfortable throughout the service.

    Most modern funerals don't require full suits or dresses nowadays. On the other hand, this is not the time to dress in an overly casual manner.

    Avoid wearing any type of athletic wear, including flip-flops, sweatpants, or windbreakers.

    In contrast, inappropriate attire for a funeral, which is a deeply personal and emotional occasion, includes wearing clothes that are too reminiscent of a business setting.

    At a funeral, light summer suits are acceptable attire; however, you shouldn't make the mistake of wearing a heavy wool suit when the temperature is high.

    At a funeral, light summer suits are acceptable attire; however, you shouldn't make the mistake of wearing a heavy wool suit when the temperature is high.

    Materials and Fabrics

    If it is made of a fabric that allows air to circulate and is not heavy, a funeral garb that completely covers the body can still be comfortable to wear.

    Cotton, linen, and chambray are examples of breathable and lightweight fabrics that you should look into using. Polyester, denim, and nylon are some examples of synthetic and heavy materials that should be avoided because they retain heat and sweat.


    It is becoming more acceptable to wear colours other than the traditional black to funerals. Traditionally, people have worn black.

    However, if the family is planning a sombre funeral or if you are unsure, it is best to stick to neutral colours like grey, beige, or navy blue for the occasion.

    A drab getup can be given a lot more personality with the help of some colourful accessories.

    In addition to the more conventional black, navy blue, or grey, muted colours, white, and neutrals are now acceptable to wear to funerals.

    In addition to the more conventional black, navy blue, or grey, muted colours, white, and neutrals are now acceptable to wear to funerals.

    White is a colour that is commonly associated with funerals and can be worn to show that you are in mourning. In the summer, white is a much more chic choice than darker colours, which absorb more heat. Peter Tziotzis Orthodox Funeral Directors are here to help make the funeral process as smooth and stress-free as possible for you and your loved ones.

    Things to Consider

    what to wear to a funeral in the summer (2)

    It is important to keep in mind that even though it may be hot outside, the level of formality in your attire should be appropriate for the setting and the event.

    We are unable to make conclusive statements regarding any and all circumstances; however, the following observations are applicable to the vast majority of situations:

    • You are not going to this event in order to make a good impression on other people or to find a partner. You are there to pay your respects to the family of the deceased individual and to honour the person who has passed away.
    • Your outfit ought to demonstrate appropriate deference to the event. What do you believe the person who passed away would think of the outfit you are wearing? What about the members of the family?
    • At this get-together, the focus shouldn't be on you and what you're wearing; instead, it should be on the people you're with.
    • Alternately, if you are unable to determine whether or not the outfit you have chosen is appropriate, you should select another option. If you are unsure of something, you should trust your gut instincts.
    • If it is extremely hot and you will be spending any portion of the ceremony outside, you should make sure that whatever you wear is made of a lightweight fabric and has a loose fit. Be comfortable. After all, you will be standing for an extended period of time in the sun, and it will be hot outside.
    • Antiperspirants are an absolute necessity, but keep in mind that there may be physical contact in the form of hugging, and a significant number of people have sensitivities to perfumes and colognes.
    • At a wake or a funeral, is it appropriate to wear all white, red, or hot pink? Do you feel comfortable wearing a very form-fitting dress or pants? There is a good chance that no one will ask you to leave; however, unless you are making a specific statement (perhaps the person who has passed away cherished the colour pink, and all family members were asked to wear pink), I would not do so.
    • Don't pile on the accessories, and try to avoid wearing makeup with a lot of volume. To put it simply, less is more.

    Keeping it simple doesn't mean you have to look frumpy either. You can exhibit good style and respect at the same time. 

    Creating a Funeral Ensemble

    So what's appropriate? Here are some clothing suggestions for those still unsure of what they can wear to a summer funeral:

    • You can wear either shorts or pants.
    • Skirt or dress
    • shirt with a collar or a blouse with buttons
    • Formal footwear
    • Suit jacket

    Avoid these everyday funeral fashion faux pas:

    • Clothing for athletes
    • Vests and tank tops
    • Clothing consisting of shorts or skirts that fall just above the knee
    • Flip flops

    Women's Summer Funeral Outfit Ideas

    A woman should wear to a funeral in summer is something black, navy blue, or charcoal grey that will keep her cool without baring all. Peter Tziotzis Orthodox Funerals offers a full range of funeral services to help make this difficult time a little bit easier for you and your family. 

    Short-Sleeve Short Dress

    A summertime funeral calls for a short, black dress that falls just above the knee and either has no sleeves or short sleeves and hits at the knee. The trick is to choose a dress that has a more formal appearance than something you would normally wear during the day. You should select an item with a higher neckline because it doesn't cover the shoulders or arms very much. You are free to wear either flats or heels.

    Sleeveless Blouse With Skirt

    You can maintain your comfort while still looking appropriate for the funeral by wearing a dressy skirt. To ensure that the outfit remains current, wear a lovely black skort with a dark tank top that is flowy and has a high neckline, such as a boat neck. Sandals with a cute strapped design and a business casual vibe complete the look.

    Sleeveless Maxi Dress

    On a hot day, you might find that a black maxi dress of good quality is the most comfortable option. Choose an article of clothing with a high neckline, such as a halter neck, so that your cleavage is not exposed. The outfit is elevated from the typical attire for a summer day thanks to the addition of ballet flats and a dressy necklace.

    Sleeveless Pant Jumpsuit

    It's possible that you won't wear pants during the summer, but if you choose ones that are airy and flowy, you can still stay cool. To achieve a contemporary look appropriate for a funeral, grab a black sleeveless pant jumpsuit and pair it with some lovely sandals.

    Men's Summer Funeral Outfit Ideas

    The funeral options available to men during the summer are comparable to those available during other seasons, with the exception that more short-sleeved options are available when the temperature is high. Keep in mind that, just like the ladies, you should make sure that your chest is covered up.

    Polo Shirt With Slacks

    A great look for a summer funeral is slacks in black, navy blue, or charcoal grey, a high-quality golf shirt or polo shirt in black, charcoal, or navy blue, and a golf or polo bag. Remember to select dressier footwear, such as boat shoes, for the occasion.

    Button-Up With Rolled Sleeves and Slacks

    You can go for the classic button-up shirt and slacks look if you're the type of gentleman who values tradition. Rolling your sleeves up to just below your elbows is an easy way to stay cool. Put some effort into your funeral attire by tucking in your shirt if you prefer a more formal look.

    Dress Shorts With Shirt and Tie

    There is the option of men's dress shirts. The key for men who wish to wear shorts to a funeral is to make certain that the shorts are of a longer length, that they are loose without being baggy, and that they are made from a fabric that has a nice appearance. This look can be made to appear more business casual by wearing the shorts with a button-up shirt and a tie. Choose a pair of dressier shoes that you are comfortable wearing without socks.

    Short-Sleeve Button-Up With Slacks

    One more tried-and-true combination that works well for men is a button-up shirt with short sleeves worn with slacks or dark khakis. Make sure that your button-up shirt with short sleeves has a great fit and appears to be of high quality because button-ups with short sleeves look more casual.

    Tips for Choosing Summer Funeral Outfits

    The colour and formality level of proper funeral attire doesn't change from season to season, but materials and cuts matter in summer. Let Peter Tziotzis Orthodox Funerals help you select the type of funeral service that best fits your needs and your budget.

    Consider Short Sleeves

    The first piece of advice is to avoid wearing long sleeves at all costs. It is appropriate to wear short-sleeved clothing to a funeral, particularly if the service is held during the warmer months of the year.

    Although this is not the time to dress extremely casually (unless you have been instructed otherwise), many simple outfits that feature short sleeves look fantastic.

    It would not be difficult for men to don a button-up or polo shirt with short sleeves, and women would have no trouble donning a dress or blouse with short sleeves.

    Look for types of clothing that give you the impression that they are suitable not only for the weather but also for the event.

    Avoid Tight Clothing

    When you're hot and sweaty, nothing is worse than having to wear clothing that's too tight.

    During the colder months, when you are trying to layer warm clothes, wearing clothing that is too constrictive or too tight might be acceptable, but during the warmer months, it is downright uncomfortable.

    Wearing clothes that are too big for you will make you feel much more at ease because they are less constrictive.

    This is especially important to keep in mind if you anticipate remaining seated in the same position for an extended period of time. For instance, attending a church funeral while dressed in constricting clothing might quickly start to feel like a nightmare. It is not selfish to put your own comfort first.

    Choose a Cool Fabric

    When it comes to keeping your cool during the hot summer months, certain fabrics are superior to others. Linen, chambray, and cotton are the three most suitable options.

    Natural materials, such as cotton, wool, and linen, always have better breathability than synthetic materials, such as polyester, denim, and nylon. These materials may be simple to locate, but you should be aware that they will keep heat close to your body.

    Pay Attention to Length

    When shopping for dresses and skirts, it is important to pay close attention to the length of the garment. Dresses and skirts that end well above the knee are generally inappropriate to wear in public settings. If at all possible, look for something that is at least knee-length.

    Both pants and shorts are subject to the same rule. Even though it's possible to get away with wearing shorts to a funeral, particularly if the service is being held outside, you should still make sure the length is appropriate. When all else fails, everything should bring you down to your knees at the very least.

    Avoid Athletic Clothes

    Avoid making the mistake of dressing like you're going to the gym, no matter how hot it is outside. This fashion faux pas is especially dangerous on hot days.

    Attire consisting of athletic wear, tank tops, or undershirts is not acceptable to wear to a funeral or wake.

    The one and only time this rule does not apply to you is if you are competing in a sporting event that is part of a memorial service that honours a particular person or event in a unique way. If that's the case, you should leave your workout clothes at home.

    Stick to Neutral Colors

    It is becoming increasingly common for mourners to dress in a variety of colours when attending funerals. At some funerals, guests are asked to wear a specific colour or pattern in honour of the person who has passed away, while at others, it is up to the individual guest to choose what to wear.

    However, when in doubt, you should avoid using bright colours. These loud patterns and bright colours serve as a diversion, drawing attention away from the person who has passed away.

    Although there is no need to feel obligated to dress in all black, especially when the temperature is high, it is polite to show respect by doing so.

    It is recommended that you dress in neutral colours such as grey, navy blue, white, and beige at all times.

    However, make sure to take into account any cultural norms or expectations, as different cultures traditionally wear different colours to funerals.

    Wear a Hat

    Although it is customary for followers of certain religions to cover their heads during funeral services, this is not always the case. You should, however, think about donning a hat if you are aware that the ceremony will be held outside or close to the grave.

    Even though this is not a mandatory component of the dress code (unless it is specifically stated otherwise), wearing a hat during the summer helps protect your skin from the sun's harmful rays.

    It is important to exercise moderation when selecting a hat to wear. This is not the time to pull out your go-to floppy hat from the trunk of your car. Instead, opt for something that is tasteful and uncomplicated, steering clear of a baseball cap or anything else that is excessively casual.

    Wear Appropriate Footwear

    It is important to pay attention to the environment of the funeral to ensure that you are wearing appropriate footwear for the occasion. Flip-flops are not appropriate footwear for any occasion, even if they are being held on a beach.

    In a similar vein, you should not wear your slippers or running shoes inside the house. Sandals and shoes with open toes are not appropriate footwear for men.

    As long as the sandals are dressy and in good condition, it is possible that open-toed sandals can be worn by women in certain situations.

    If there will be a significant amount of walking outside, women should avoid wearing heels or any other type of shoes that are not well-suited for walking on surfaces such as gravel, stones, or grass.

    Keep Accessories Minimal

    Not only is it uncomfortable to wear a lot of large, bulky accessories when the weather is hot, but also this sort of attire is not appropriate for a funeral. It is to your advantage to keep both your outfit and your accessories to a minimum.

    Always opt for the simplest solution. You are able to showcase your personal flair without drawing attention away from the other guests.

    Use the Job Interview Test

    The test you take for the job interview is a great way to ensure that you will be dressed appropriately for a funeral. Consider whether the clothes you are wearing are appropriate for a potential employer to see you in.

    If it is of a subdued colour and is an item that you would wear in a business environment, then it is probably appropriate to wear to a funeral as well.

    Nevertheless, if this is not something you would wear to a job interview, you might want to think about trying something different.

    Dress Down for Visitation

    In most cases, the dress code becomes less conservative when there are visitation or calling hours for the family.

    It is not as important to strictly adhere to the protocols regarding funeral attire because you will be paying your respects to the family in a more relaxed environment (typically their home).

    However, in light of the fact that you wish to maintain a respectful demeanour, you should dress more conservatively. It is acceptable for you to come directly from work dressed in the attire that you wear to work, or you can wear jeans instead.

    It is important that you show your support for the family during the visitation; therefore, you should not let your attire prevent you from doing so.

    Ask the Family

    Not to mention the fact that you shouldn't be embarrassed to ask your relatives, do it anyway. If you are unsure of the location of the funeral service or what to wear, you should enquire with the family.

    This offers the greatest amount of clarity regarding what you can anticipate receiving from the service. You will then feel more prepared to create an outfit that is respectful and appropriate once you have reached that point.

    If you do not feel comfortable calling the family of the deceased family member directly, you can call a friend or family member who is attending the memorial service instead. In order to obtain more context, you should enquire about what they intend to wear. You could also get in touch with the funeral home or the place of service to find out what they advise and find out what their recommendations are.

    You are showing your support for the family by attending the funeral. The clothes you wear are not required for the day's activities in any way.

    Why Is Funeral Attire So Important?

    what to wear to a funeral

    It is possible that proper attire is not required at all, depending on the people who are hosting the funeral. Some people in today's society do not consider wearing clothes that are demure or neutral to be an authentic way to celebrate the life of a deceased family member or friend.

    These families may choose to inform their guests, either in the memorial invitation or by way of the obituary notice, that they are encouraged to wear bright or casual attire. This information could be communicated to the guests in one of two ways.

    When attending this kind of funeral, those who knew the person who passed away are encouraged to come as they are to pay their respects, rather than stressing over what to wear.

    However, for more traditional and conservative families, the time of death and grief can be an emotionally charged and sensitive period when making funeral arrangements.

    It is possible to cause offence by wearing clothing that does not convey a respectful attitude towards the departed person and those who are closest to them in their mourning.

    Some Orthodox religions have specific requirements for garb, and it is best to find out in advance what they are. Visit Peter Tziotzis Orthodox Funerals to know more about our prepaid funeral service and find the best funeral option for your unique situation. 

    Guests are encouraged to err on the side of caution or get in touch with a member of the family's immediate circle in order to enquire about the family's expectations regarding traditional or cultural attire for the funeral.

    In the end, your presence at the funeral service will be more important than the clothing that you choose to wear there.

    The purpose of these suggestions for what to wear to a memorial service is to help you make everyone around you, as well as yourself, more at ease so that you can concentrate on what really matters—saying your final goodbyes to a person who was important to you.

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