Showing posts from April, 2011

The Princess Brides Part 2

Finally we know who designed the dress, Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen. The lace appliqué for the bodice and skirt was hand-made by the Royal School of Needlework, based at Hampton Court Palace, and was custom-made to include the four emblems of the United Kingdom: the rose, the thistle, the daffodil and the shamrock. The dress, made of ivory and white satin gazar, had lace handcrafted to ensure all adorning flowers were of matching colour and style. The veil, made of layers of soft, ivory silk tulle with a trim of hand-embroidered flowers, subtly dropped onto the long train, 2 metres and 70 cms long, which fell three steps down onto the Abbey steps. The shoes, were Alexander McQueen too, and made of ivory duchess satin. The long lace sleeves of the dress are bound to set a trend for future bridal gowns. It has been remarked upon by many that the gown is reminiscent of the one worn by Grace Kelly on her wedding day. 

The tiara, the little known 1936 Cartier ''halo'…

The Princess Brides Part 1

On April 26th, three days before Prince William marries Kate Middleton, it will be the 88th anniversary of the wedding of his great-grandparents, Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon and Prince Albert, Duke of York (who later became King George VI and Queen Elizabeth). They are of course the couple recently depicted in the Oscar-winning movie, The King's Speech. Despite being almost ninety years apart the weddings have some things in common. Neither bride is of royal birth although Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon as the daughter of an earl was an aristocrat. Both grooms are second in line to the throne, "Bertie" as he was known, after his brother, Edward and William, after his father Prince Charles. William and Kate's wedding will take place in Westminster Abbey as did Bertie and Elizabeth's.  Back in the early 20s, making the wedding a public affair instead of at a royal chapel was a break with tradition. It is believed this decision was taken to lift the spirits of the…

Squiggle Room

This month marks not only Vivienne Westwood's 70th birthday but also the 30th anniversary of her famous first collection, Pirates, which included the iconic squiggle print. Below is from The Financial Times
The longevity of the Squiggle, and its ongoing journey from subversive, counter-culture beginnings to the upper echelons of luxurious interiors is nothing short of astounding, mirroring the ascendancy of Westwood (who turns 70 on 8th April) from Chelsea anarchist to British national treasure. Similarly, there are few – if any – prints in fashion that are so inextricably linked to one single fashion label.
While Murray Blewett of the Westwood design studio points out that the print ‘developed from trying to symbolize rope’ (which it obviously does), its journey to World’s End started in Paris in the hands of another designer. Paul Gorman, author of the rock and pop fashion book and blog The Look, interviewed Malcolm McLaren many times between the mid-1970s and his deat…