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Messages - katmaxoz

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Alexandra Feodorovna / Re: Alix's Engagement and Wedding
« on: July 24, 2005, 06:27:16 PM »
right... so he wedding dress wasn't preserved? but wasn't her coronation dress preserved? why wasn't her wedding dress?

It probably was preserved by Alexandra as part of her offical wardrobe - only bits and pieces of which survived the revolution - not locked away in a vault like her coronation dress was.

This page has some information and pictures on Russian court dresses and there is another on the Alexander palace site as well.

Years ago I saw an exhibiton of Russian costume that had many 19th and early 20th century examples. It was quite amazing to see the differences in peoples sizes. In the 19th century the average dress size was that of a young teenager today (mabye size 8-10) and hight and weight suddenly jumped up in all the dresses displayed from c1900 onwards. Nicholas & Alexandra were typical of the smaller physical sizes of the 19th century if their coronation clothes are anything to go by.

While not strictly on this topic here is an interesting page on Russian court etiquette.


Alexandra Feodorovna / Re: Alix's Engagement and Wedding
« on: July 24, 2005, 01:55:37 AM »
Its quite possible Alexandra's wedding dress hasn't survived the revolution even though a lot of other royal items did.  I would guess that it was very similar overall to her coronation dress. If you look at the picture grandduchessella has posted you can see the silver of the actual dress peaking out from under Alex's gold cloak (which she wore because she was now marrying an emperor, not the heir - another agument of ettiqute solved:-))

On reflection, the dress I have in my postcard is the same one as grandduchess_42 has posted in this thread (though a full length and different image) - and Alexanastasia is probably correct in saying that it is simply a formal court dress - probalby made delibretly of lighter materials than her actual silver thread wedding dress so that Alex could wear it to formal occasions without tripping over.  

Apparently those silver dresses the high Grand Duchesses had to wear at really formal occasions hardly allowed you to move through their sheer weight and often left bruising on the shoulders etc.

Alex's coronation dress was made in 2 segments with with the skirt seperate from the top and a ribbon running down the middle which connected the two sections down the front (giving the illusion of a full length single dress) and jewelled buttons of the wearers choice pinned to the ribbon (you can clearly see the marks on the ribbon where they were pinned).

I know Maria Feodrovna's coronation gown also still exists (but I haven't seen it except in a couple of photos) though I doubt her wedding dress is around either.

It might well be that the coronation gowns were seen as belonging to the state and part of the crown jewels (they have all been saved from Catherine the Great onwards from what I can see), but the wedding gowns were considered private property and retained by their wearers and therefore more vulnerable to the changes the revolution bought.

I'll see if I can upload some pictures later in the week, I think I'll stop ranting now...


Alexandra Feodorovna / Re: Alix's Engagement and Wedding
« on: July 23, 2005, 10:00:56 PM »
I have been facinated by Russian Court dress for years now, and have always kept an eye open for descriptions of them and pictures.

From all I have read over the years the custom was for Romanov brides to wear a silver court dress to their wedding along with traditional jewels which were set aside for the day.  Grand Duchess Marie Pavlovna jr description of her wedding day in her autobigraphy is one of the best describing how heavy these were to wear even if they were lovely to look at.

Alexandra was married in her silver court dress, but I remember reading that there was an argument over exactly what she should wear because they were still in mourning for Nicholas's father. In the end a compromise was made. Alix wore the court dress, and a modified gold cloak which you see in the painting of the ceremony.

I was actually lucky enough to see Alix's coronation dress along with one of Nicholas's formal uniforms on display some years ago at a Faberge exhibiton in Sydney.  They were both tiny people by todays standards, and Alex was very slim.  Also the coronation dress has a lot of small details, such as fine embroidered pearls that aren't easily seen in photos.

I suspect that the formal court dress we see in a few of Alexandra's photos before here coronation was probably/Maybe her wedding dress - as all court dresses, even for the wealthy Romanovs were a major investment ment to last years.

I'd attach a photo to this posting of a colour postcard of Alex I own which I think dates from not too long after her marriage however, I can't work out how to paste the picture in. I can't be sure the dress is the one she married in, but there's a good chance it may be as she wore this dress (or another very similar to it) for many years if other photos when she is older are anything to go by.

I hope this is of some interest to the group.


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