It’s spring ‘down under’ and three days ago, I had a short break with the family. We headed to a regional country town in my state called Bendigo. During the gold rush a lot of money poured out of the Bendigo hills and as a result it has the most beautiful Victorian buildings for a town of its size. Today, Bendigo’s economy is heavily underpinned by tourism and they have a very dynamic art gallery director. The current exhibition, all the way from London’s Victoria and Albert museum is called ‘The White Wedding Dress’ and it has dresses dating back more than 200 years. Not all of the dresses are white. Did you know Queen Victoria is responsible for the tradition of the white wedding dress?
I am a sucker for a wedding dress, and in my book Boomerang Bride, Matilda wore a vintage dress. It seemed obvious to me that I had to go this exhibition. My teenage boys were not so certain so I sent them to the science Discovery Centre.
As well as dresses, there were shoes, gloves, bonnets and handbags. The beadwork on some of the dresses was amazing. Some dresses were over the top for me and others too plain but all were a fascinating snap-shot of their time. I learned all sorts of things including the rise of the ‘celebrity’ bride. I thought it a recent phenomena but no, it dates back to the 1900s.
The best way to describe this exhibition and to show you some of the dresses is this You Tube video clip. Enjoy!