27 Stunning Vintage Photos of Brides in Their Victorian Wedding Dresses Before 1900

For the mid-Victorian bride (1870s) there was an emergence of middle class wealth, and with it a display of their new riches. Wedding gowns fashioned by Worth in Paris were the ultimate status symbol. And if one couldn’t afford an original, one copied them. Full court trains were now part of the wedding ensemble, as were long veils, a bustle, elegant details and two bodices–a modest one for the wedding and a low one for special occasions.

The late Victorians (1890s) saw the bustle disappear, a demi-train and large sleeves now in fashion. If the bride married in church, the dress must have a train, with a veil of the same length. The veil could be lace or silk tulle. From the mid-Victorian era to the 1890s, the veil covered the bride’s face and was not lifted until after church. The veil was not used as a shawl after the wedding any more, however. White kid gloves were long enough to tuck under the sleeves, and had a slit in one finger to slip the ring on without removing the glove. Slippers were of white kid, satin or brocade and the heels rose to one inch.

For the widow who remarried in the early and mid-Victorian eras, she did not wear white, had no bridesmaids, no veil and no orange blossoms, (a sign of purity.) She usually wore a pearl or lavender satin gown trimmed with ostrich feathers. In the later decades, she was allowed attendants as well as pages, but no veil or orange blossoms. She could wear a shade or two away from white, preferring rose, salmon, ivory or violet.

1850s bride
1850s
1878
A beautiful bride on her wedding day, 1880s
A German bride, 1862
An Italian bride, Rome, 1875
A Victorian bride looking radiantly lovely in her elegant, feminine white dress, 1850s
Baroness Christine von Linden on her wedding day, May 13, 1898
Beautiful bride in the 1880s
Bride in 1885
Bride in exquisite French wedding dress, 1877
Bride in the 1860s
Bride in the late 1860s
Bride, ca. 1860s-70s
Florence Folger married William A. Webster in 1887
Harriet Louisa Thorne on her wedding day in 1882
Lady in beautiful wedding dress in the 1890s
Luise Margaret of Prussia’s wedding in 1879
Maria Feodorovna in her wedding day, ca. 1860s
New Orleans Bride, 1888
Portrait of a bride in 1890
Princess Alice married Ludwig of Hesse in July 1862
Princess Louise on her wedding day in 1871
Wedding of Princess Mary of Teck in 1893
Wedding portrait of Annie Chinery Cameron, 18 November 1869
Young bride in 1874
Young lady poses in her wedding dress, 1885

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