Wednesday, 2 November 2016

The Legacy of Marie Antoinette

On this day in 1755, the last queen of France, Marie Antoinette was born.  Long after her death in 1793 at the age of 37, Marie Antoinette has been a major historical figure linked with wealth and fashion as well as the Catholic Church and conservatism.  Even today, designers such as John Galliano and Lagerfeld take inspiration from her sense of style.

Did you know: 

Marie-Antoinette was only 14 when she married Louis XV1 who was 15 years old.

When first arriving at Versaille, she refused to wear her corset and preferred the style of the "robe a la polonaise" .

To accompany her lavish dresses, Marie-Antoinette wore a 3-foot "pouf" which was a mountain of powdered hair with plumes, veils and objects that referenced current events such as mini war ships.  Some reached up to 6 foot in height.

Although she powdered her hair so it looked fashionably white, she did in fact, have blonde hair and blue eyes and when she first arrived in France, the people loved her beauty.

In 1783, with over 500,000 homeless people in France, Marie Antoinette bought 200 pairs of shoes.

Marie-Antoinette's wedding was extravagant and decorated with clumps of white diamonds.  

Rose Bertin was a French milliner and dressmaker to Marie-Antoinette and although from a humble background became the first celebrated French fashion designer and is credited for bring fashion to the forefront of popular culture.  She wore Rose's lace cap when going to the guilltie in 1793.

Marie Antoinette never said "let them eat cake" which was claimed to have been said when the French were starving.

Her sense of style still inspires today.

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