Did you follow along with our Royal Wedding Week celebrations? Every day last week leading up to the spectacular wedding of Prince Harry and Ms. Meghan Markle (who hails from our very own Los Angeles), we shared an object in the FIDM Museum Collection with royal provenance on our social media platforms. We are proud that our Museum holds one of the largest collections of royal dress in the country, and it's important to us to share these precious objects with our community! Don't worry if you missed a day; we're recapping the week for you below.
You also have a chance to see three pieces from our royal collection in person: our Acquiring Beauty exhibition includes a cloth of gold bodice worn to the coronation of King George III in 1761, as well as Queen Victoria's beaded skirt panel worn during her 1887 Golden Jubilee. Capturing the Catwalk: Runway Photographs from the Michel Arnaud Archive, opening May 24, will also have a royal connection: the exhibition features a dress worn to Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer's 1981 wedding.
Congratulations to the new Duke and Duchess of Sussex!
Printed silk gown worn by Princess Charlotte
Helen Larson Historic Fashion Collection
FIDM Museum Purchase: Funds raised by the FIDM Museum Fashion Council [2011-2015] and other generous donors, 2017.5.40
To begin our royal journey, the extremely rare ‘Star of the Order of the Garter’ Dress, 1816-17, worn by Princess Charlotte of Wales. Charlotte, the only child of King George IV and Caroline of Brunswick, wore this printed silk gown full of symbolic royal imagery: roses (for England), shamrocks (Ireland), thistle (Scotland), myrtle and acorns (marital flora), as well as multiple ‘Star of the Order of the Garter’ badges – an order of chivalry founded in 1348 by King Edward III, and dedicated to Saint George, England’s patron saint. Curator Kevin Jones traced the ownership of the dress to members of Princess Charlotte’s household, making it one of only a handful of garments known to be worn by this popular princess.