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What to Wear to a Funeral in the Winter

When attending a funeral in the winter, it is important to dress appropriately. Depending on the type of funeral service, your clothing should be respectful and reflect the solemnity of the occasion. In general, you will want to avoid wearing anything inappropriate.

Winter funerals present some unique challenges when it comes to choosing the right outfit. You will want to be sure to dress warmly enough to avoid being uncomfortable, but not so warm that you will be sweating during the service. Depending on the climate, you may also need to account for snow and ice.

Things to consider when choosing what to wear to a funeral in the winter

When attending a funeral, some of the smaller, logistical points will influence what you end up wearing or what you end up bringing to the service. Your winter funeral outfit choices will depend on the answer to a few questions.

The type of service

What type of service are you attending? Is it a traditional funeral? A memorial service? An upbeat celebration of life? Has the family requested attendees wear certain types of clothing or certain colors? The answers to these questions will affect what you ultimately decide to wear.

The location of the service

Is the service indoors? Is it a graveside service? Where will the service take place, and how long will you be there for? (Keep in mind most funeral services last around 30-45 minutes total.) If there's a change in location during the service, do you have extra layers in case it gets colder?

The weather conditions

Weather conditions will obviously play a major role in what you wear to a winter funeral. If it's extremely cold outside, you'll want to make sure you're dressed warmly enough. This may include wearing a coat, scarf, gloves, and hat. If it's snowing or there is ice on the ground, you will also want to be sure to wear boots or shoes with good traction.

Your personal comfort level

It's important to be comfortable during a funeral service. If you are too hot or too cold, it will be difficult to focus on the service. You may also want to consider whether you will need to sit for a long period of time. If so, you will want to make sure your clothing is comfortable and not constricting.

What to wear to a winter funeral

For women, a winter funeral is a good opportunity to wear a dress or skirt with a sweater or blazer. You should avoid anything too flashy or revealing. If you are unsure about what to wear, it is always better to err on the side of caution and be conservative in your choice of clothing.

A pantsuit is also an appropriate choice for a winter funeral. Again, you should be sure to avoid anything too casual or revealing. If you choose to wear a pantsuit, consider pairing it with a dress shirt or blouse.

An example of a winter funeral outfit for women. Source: Outfit Trends

For men, a winter funeral is a good opportunity to wear a suit or sport coat with dress pants. You should avoid anything too casual, such as jeans or khakis. If you are unsure about what to wear, it is always better to err on the side of caution and be conservative in your choice of clothing.

A sweater or dark coat is also an appropriate choice for a winter funeral. If you choose to wear a sweater, consider pairing it with a dress shirt.


An example of a winter funeral outfit for men. Source: Outfit Trends

Colors to wear to a funeral are typically darker colors such as black, blue or gray, but it's important to check that the family has not requested specific items or colors be worn to the service. Some families ask that attendees wear specific types of clothing (such as Hawaiian shirts or sports jerseys) while others ask for their loved one's favorite color to be worn (which might be a brighter color, like yellow or purple).

What not to include in a funeral outfit for the winter

In general, you should avoid wearing anything that is too casual or revealing. This includes:

  • Jeans
  • T-shirts
  • Sweaters with busy patterns
  • Hoodies
  • Casual hoodies, sweaters, or sweatshirts with big logos
  • Items of clothing in poor condition

You should also avoid wearing anything that is overly flashy or attention-seeking. This includes:

  • Jewelry that is too loud or obnoxious
  • Clothing with large logos or slogans
  • Clothing that is ripped, torn, or otherwise in poor condition
  • Clothing that makes a lot of noise when moving

When choosing an outfit for a funeral, you generally can't go wrong by choosing items that are in good condition, darker in color (unless otherwise specified), and conservative in nature. If you're worried about your outfit, ask a friend or family member for their opinion on what you're deciding to wear and at the end of the day, remember that the funeral is a time to remember and honor the life of a loved one.

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Last updated July 21, 2022
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