Five things to do in Fe­bru­ary

BBC History Magazine - - Contents -


Royal Women

The Fash­ion Mu­seum, Bath 3 Fe­bru­ary–28 April 2019

01225 477789 fash­ion­mu­

The fash­ions of four royal women – Queen Alexan­dra, Queen Mary, Queen El­iz­a­beth the Queen Mother and Princess Mar­garet – come un­der the spot­light in Bath this month in an ex­hi­bi­tion that ex­plores the sar­to­rial lives and tastes of each of these in­flu­en­tial women.

The ex­hi­bi­tion will ex­am­ine how the monar­chi­cal role played by each woman – none of whom were reg­nant – was re­flected in their fash­ion choices, as well as their in­flu­ence on wider cloth­ing styles.

Queen Alexan­dra, the wife of Ed­ward VII, favoured chok­ers and high neck­lines – a fash­ion that was adopted by many Bri­tish women. How­ever, the style of Queen Mary (wife of Ge­orge V, and queen con­sort dur­ing the First World War) changed lit­tle dur­ing her life­time, de­spite the trans­for­ma­tion in fash­ions seen dur­ing the first half of the 20th cen­tury.

Among the items on show is a tar­tan silk evening dress from c1870, thought to have been worn by Alexan­dra to a func­tion at the Palace of Holy­rood­house in Ed­in­burgh. The dress went miss­ing after the queen’s death in 1925 but mys­te­ri­ously reap­peared in a vin­tage shop in the 1930s. Also on show is a dress and cape of gold lamé and turquoise cut vel­vet be­long­ing to Queen Mary and worn to the fu­ture Queen El­iz­a­beth II’s wed­ding in 1947.

This tar­tan silk evening dress, thought to have been worn by Queen Alexan­dra, went miss­ing in 1925 be­fore reap­pear­ing in a vin­tage shop

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