Marcy writes about American life, holidays, politics and other topics. She has written hundreds of articles for online & print publications.
Are you planning to visit a Mormon Church?
What to Wear to a Mormon (LDS) Church
If you're considering visiting a Mormon Church (Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, or LDS), you may be wondering how to dress appropriately.
What to wear is just one of the questions you might have about the basics of the Mormon Church.
Yes, Mormon's generally dress modestly, and although nobody will think poorly if you're wearing something different, you will probably feel more comfortable if you follow a few simple guidelines.
Chances are, you can find an outfit in your own closet that will work just fine, so don't worry about going to the mall (although if there's a good sale, well, who can blame you!).
Maxi Skirts are Common in the LDS Church
What Girls Wear in the Mormon Church
Girls and women usually wear skirts or dresses to Sunday worship services in the LDS (Mormon) church. There are no 'rules' about skirts, but it's the tradition that most females follow, and it goes along with the idea that you show respect by dressing in your "Sunday Best." But clothes certainly don't have to be dressy.
Skirts for adult women and teen girls should generally be no shorter than the knee. This is considered a 'modest' length, and for those who have been to the Temple and wear the undergarments of the church, that length keeps the garments from showing.
The top of the dress, or the blouse, should cover the shoulders a bit, for the same reason. A small capped sleeve will do the trick. But nobody will say anything if you wear a sleeveless dress.
The neckline should not be too low or revealing. Again, you can add a sweater or other top if you want to 'modest-up' an outfit you already have.
If you have a dress that doesn't have a small sleeve, and if you prefer blending in with the congregation, you can wear a sweater or jacket and it will work fine. Many women in the church buy dresses they like, but that don't have sleeves and they add a jacket or sweater top so they can wear it.
You'll find girls and women wearing the same shoes, jewelry, purses and other accessories you see anywhere else. The same goes for hairstyles. Mormon women can have the same stylish cuts or hair colors you see in magazines, so be yourself, and be as stylish as you wish.
Mormon Men Usually Wear White Shirts to Church
What Guys Wear in the Mormon Church
Men and boys generally wear shirts and trousers or long pants to worship services.
While quite a few guys will wear a suit, it's certainly not required. The same goes with ties - if you have a tie, and you don't mind wearing it, that's what you'll see around the congregation.
Many males of all ages wear white shirts to church. This is not required (and some guys will wear colored shirts), but it is very common.
A dress shirt with a tie will do nicely, and Dockers or other nice-looking pants will work fine if you don't have trousers or a suit.
Some men wear facial hair, and some don't - so you need not worry about your beard, mustachio or "I need a shave" look.
What Mormon Kids Wear to Church
How to Dress Children for the LDS Church
Children in the Mormon church are usually dressed neatly and, of course, in clean outfits (clean, at least, until they crawl on the floor, spit up, or otherwise act like kids!).
Don't worry about dressing your child in frilly outfits or stuffy suits if you don't have those type of clothes. Kids grow fast, and those things are expensive!
Little girls wear dresses or baby outfits, and little boys wear pants of some sort, or even shorts. The main idea is for them to be comfortable and not be squirming due to tight, uncomfortable clothing they're not used to or that don't 'feel' right to them.
cynamans on October 02, 2014:
Great article Marcy. I'm a mormon and I think your hub was pretty accurate. Vote up and interesting.
Marcy Goodfleisch (author) from Planet Earth on October 10, 2013:
Thanks so much, Dear Friend! I appreciate your kind words, and I agree; it would be nice to see some of the older standards come back into vogue!
old codger from In the great Northwest on October 09, 2013:
Marcy good article and good common sense. Would be nice to get back to basics and all people to dress more modestly. And it still is hard on this old man to see men in shorts. Good job and up for you.
Marcy Goodfleisch (author) from Planet Earth on September 12, 2013:
Hi, BambooForest - thanks for your comments - and for confirming the information here. It's truly a welcoming church, in every way.
bambooforest on September 12, 2013:
Well said -- I think the most important part of this article is where Mary says that you will feel welcome no matter what you're wearing, and this is true 100%! Thank you Mary for such a well-written article, I am sure this has come in handy to some as they have had questions regarding this exact subject.
Marcy Goodfleisch (author) from Planet Earth on July 29, 2013:
Hi, Rodric29 - thanks for your kind comments here - and your kids sound adorable! I love to see the sweet kids in our congregation - they try hard to sit still and be reverent, and it sure can be a challenge.
Rodric Anthony from Surprise, Arizona on July 29, 2013:
This was an informative article and represents us well. My six kids are always in disarray going to church. We are lucky if we get them into matching socks, but they are clean--most of the time.
Voted up and shared.
Marcy Goodfleisch (author) from Planet Earth on May 30, 2013:
Thanks, Theater Girl! I agree completely - the more we understand, the more we accept and love each other's lives.
Jennifer from New Jersey on May 30, 2013:
I think this is a very interesting article. I think it is important for all of us to know that its the simalarites in our repective religions that we should celebrate, instead of criticizing the percieved differences out of ignorance!
Marcy Goodfleisch (author) from Planet Earth on May 12, 2013:
Hi, LCD - thanks for your kind words! I'm glad you know others who are in the church; once people have met Mormon friends, a lot of the mystery goes away for them. So glad you enjoyed the hub - thanks for dropping by.
L C David from Florida on May 11, 2013:
I have so many wonderful Mormon friends and although I'm not Mormon myself, I tend to be a very modest dresser as well.
This is solid advice to allow someone to feel comfortable and not make their Mormon friends feel uncomfortable either.
Marcy Goodfleisch (author) from Planet Earth on January 02, 2013:
Thanks, Aviannovice - I agree. People would feel comfortable in any worship setting dressed like these guidelines describe.
Deb Hirt from Stillwater, OK on January 02, 2013:
This attire would be appropriate in any church. Thanks, Marcie, for sharing.
Marcy Goodfleisch (author) from Planet Earth on January 01, 2013:
Wow - what an interesting anecdote, MizB - I think things have changed quite a bit in the last 15 years, and even the sister missionaries would give a different answer. We do see pants in the church at times, but since many are used to wearing skirts, that's the 'norm,' but certainly not required, and nobody lectures us on whether something is appropriate or not.
Thanks for sharing that - and for reading and voting!
Doris James MizBejabbers from Beautiful South on January 01, 2013:
Marcy, I think a lot of people have misimpressions of the LDS church. My husband joined LDS about 15 years ago and we attended the church for about a year (I didn’t become a member.). You reminded me of the laugh got when I asked the female missionaries if I could wear pants to a night service. One of them said that it would not be appropriate to dress like a man. I replied, “Why not, Jesus wore a skirt?” She tried to explain to me that there was a difference between a skirt and a robe, and that Jesus had worn a robe. I told her that I didn’t see any difference because both had skirts. She finally realized that I was teasing her and got a laugh out of it. Of course, I didn’t wear pants. I am very cold natured, though, and in the winter, I chose maxi skirts that came to my ankles, as did several of the other women in the church. Voted you up.
Marcy Goodfleisch (author) from Planet Earth on December 31, 2012:
Many thanks, Onus! I hope this helps people feel more comfortable about visiting the worship services at an LDS church!
Onusonus on December 31, 2012: