Monday, July 16, 2007

Royal Review: A Dress for Diana

Okay, I admit it. I have a mission to buy every book ever written about Diana. So when I read that this book was coming out, there was no way it wouldn't end up in my collection. I love royal weddings and I also love seeing behind the scenes. This book combines both, making it the ultimate look at the making of a fairytale.

A wedding dress is usually the centerpiece of any wedding and Diana's was no exception. Anyone who watched the 1981 wedding of Charles and Diana will remember 'The Dress'. With its 25 foot train, still the longest on royal record, it is arguably the most famous royal wedding dress in history.

From Diana's tentative phone call to the designers, to her post-wedding thank you note, A Dress for Diana details the remarkable journey the unknown young designers, David and Elizabeth Emanuel, went through in order to produce it. Pictures of the process: the fresh faced designers, the inspirations, original sketches, hands embroidering fabric, the flowers, shoes and close-ups of the intricate details. It's all there courtesy of the Emanuel's archives.

While many designers of royal wedding dresses have experienced fleeting fame (Lindka Cierach, anyone?) the Emanuel's will always have a place in history. Not only for designing her wedding dress but also for creating the infamous strapless black dress that Diana wore to her first official evening engagement with Prince Charles. Beginning with these striking fashion statements, the Emanuel's would continue to make evening dresses for Diana throughout her official royal life.

Today, Diana's wedding dress can be seen on display at her ancestral home, Althorp. And it recently formed part of the Diana, A Celebration travelling exhibit. While nothing can compare to actually seeing the dress in person, this book is the next best thing.

Click on the link to order A Dress for Diana.

© Marilyn Braun 2007

Like royal books? Visit Marilyn's Royal Bookstore!
Photo of the dress exhibit courtesy of the Althorp website

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