Marriage a la Mode: Three Centuries of Wedding Tradition

Overview

This book traces the development of dress from the silver and white brocades of eighteenth-century formal, aristocratic weddings, to the elegant crinoline revivals of the 1960s and '70s. The wearing of a white dress with a veil gradually gained ground during the nineteenth century, and the tradition as we know it seems to have been well established by the 1880s, probably influenced by the marriages of Queen Victoria, her children and grandchildren. Even then, fashionable white weddings were the preserve of ...
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Overview

This book traces the development of dress from the silver and white brocades of eighteenth-century formal, aristocratic weddings, to the elegant crinoline revivals of the 1960s and '70s. The wearing of a white dress with a veil gradually gained ground during the nineteenth century, and the tradition as we know it seems to have been well established by the 1880s, probably influenced by the marriages of Queen Victoria, her children and grandchildren. Even then, fashionable white weddings were the preserve of wealthy families. Many brides were married in the best they could afford, often a smart day dress which could also be worn on many occasions after the wedding. Wedding veils might be used again in another form, particularly as christening robes.

Shelley Tobin has drawn on the collection of wedding dresses owned by the National Trust and kept at Killerton House in Devon. Whenever possible, she has focused on gowns and accessories where she can trace the provenance of the wearer or maker. The dresses themselves are supplemented with fashion plates, portraits, and photography, together, with bridesmaids' dresses, flowers, favours and customs, to provide a fascinating social history of the past three hundred years.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780707803586
  • Publisher: National Trust, Aylesbury
  • Publication date: 5/28/2003
  • Pages: 128
  • Product dimensions: 9.64 (w) x 9.04 (h) x 0.55 (d)

Table of Contents

Introduction 6
Grand Occasions 12
A Royal Wedding: Princess Charlotte and King George III 14
The Bride wore Pink 16
The Bride wore Blue 18
The Bride wore White 20
And the Groom? 22
A Wedding Feast, 18th-century Style 24
A Regency Bride 26
Fine Lace 28
A December Wedding 30
A Royal Wedding: Queen Victoria and Prince Albert 32
The Coming of the Crinoline 34
A Lace-maker's Wedding 36
A Marriage in High Life 38
Bridal Wreaths and Corsages 40
Bridal Bouquets 42
The Wedding Cake 44
The Photographer's Studio 46
Brave New Colours 48
A Victorian Trousseau 50
The Wedding Breakfast, Victorian Style 52
A Youthful Bride 54
Working Brides 56
Victorian Wedding Favours and Ephemera 58
Trains and Drapery 60
Sumptuous Silks 62
A Literary Influence 64
Weddings of the 1890s 66
Edwardian Trousseaux 68
Floral Luxury 70
The Wedding Breakfast, Edwardian Style 72
Edwardian Wedding Ephemera 74
Two Edwardian Weddings 76
Swansong 78
Married in Khaki 80
War and Peace 82
Two Royal Weddings 84
A Suffolk Bride 86
Petals and Tassels 88
Young Attendants 90
A North Country Bride 92
The Economics of the Bottom Drawer 94
Trousseaux, 1920s and '30s 96
Sylphs & Madonnas 98
The Practical Bride 100
High Sheen Satins 102
Ingenuity and Improvisation 104
Leave Permitting 106
Demobilisation 108
Trousseaux, 1940s and '50s 110
Business as Usual 112
The Return of Glamour 114
The End is the Beginning 116
Flower Power 118
Select Bibliography 120
List of Plates 122
Index 127
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