Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Victoria's Wreath & Veil: Queen Victoria's Wedding (Part 8)

Queen Victoria on her Wedding Day
Painting by Winterhalter
Photo Credit: Versailles and More

On the afternoon of February 10, 1840, Queen Victoria stepped into the Chapel Royal with eyes fixed upon her Beloved. Every other eye in the chapel was fixed upon her. From head to toe, she was a vision in white.

Her hair appears to have been styled in the fashionable coiled chignon, with sections loosely twisted into drop curls and likely pinned underneath a loose bun or ponytail. {33} Heinrich Butschal reports that “a very few diamonds were studded in her hair behind which fastened the veil.” {20}

Resting delicately atop her head was a wreath of orange blossoms (purity) interlaced with myrtle (love and domestic happiness). Affixed atop her bun was the first piece of the beautiful white Honiton lacework. This lace edged her 4-1/2-foot square veil of machine-made cotton net which trailed demurely down her back.

The second piece of Honiton to draw the eye was a wide Bertha collar, measuring 7-1/2” in length, which extended over her shoulders to provide a double puff to the sleeves of her dress. From here, the third piece of lace is secured as a 2-1/2” frill, which trailed down her arm just beneath her elbow.

The fourth and final piece of lace was placed on the dramatic train of her dress. Intricately embroidered with exotic flowers and leaves, the 25-1/2”-deep flounce of lace backed by cotton net provided four (some accounts say six) yards of luxurious white satin for her beautiful bridesmaids to manage behind her.

Read Part 7

Read Part 9

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