The Royal Bridal Gown of Queen Elizabeth (nee Bowes Lyon), 1923

Prince Albert, Duke of York, and Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon were married on 26 April 1923 in Westminster Abbey. Elizabeth’s wedding dress was made from deep ivory chiffon moire, embroidered with pearls and a silver thread. It was intended to match the traditional Flanders lace provided for the train by Queen Mary. Elizabeth’s dress, which was in the fashion of the early 1920s, was designed by Madame Handley-Seymour, dressmaker to Queen Mary.

A strip of Brussels lace, inserted in the dress, was a Strathmore family heirloom. A female ancestor of the bride wore it to a grand ball for “Bonnie Prince Charlie”, Charles Edward Stuart.

The silver leaf girdle had a trail of spring green tulle, trailing to the ground; silver and rose thistle fastened it. According to an era news article:

“In the trimming the bride has defied all old superstitions about the unluckiness of green.”

Unlike more recent dresses, details of this one were publicly revealed in advance of the wedding day. However, the dress was worked on until the last possible opportunity: the day before the wedding, Elizabeth divided her time between the wedding rehearsal and her dressmakers.

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Queen Elizabeth (nee Bowes Lyon) wearing her long bridal veil of old point de Flanderes lace (1923) via

queen mother wedding dress

Queen Elizabeth (nee Bowes Lyon) in her wedding dress (1923) via

York Wedding

Queen Elizabeth (nee Bowes Lyon) & Prince Albert wearing RAF full dress in the rank of group captain, his senior service rank at the time of his marriage (1923) via

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