Sunday, February 24, 2008

Is Nothing Sacred?

The other day, I saw this graphic on another person's MySpace page, and it was like a car accident I couldn't look away from. I was both appalled and giggling my head off at the ridiculousness of the image (to me the best part is the glitter)

But it shouldn't be surprising that a glitter graphic was made of this painting. Out of all of the Pre-Raphaelite artworks, I would argue that the two with the greatest modern popularity among the hoi polloi are The Lady of Shalott and The Accolade. Countless people who are interested in the medieval or fantastical in the slightest will have either one or both of these artworks displayed somewhere in their homes (including my own home, I can't lie!)

The attraction of The Accolade goes beyond prints of the image, however. I admit to being somewhat obsessed over weddings and wedding trends, especially medieval-themed weddings (I am planning my own wedding too), and over the years I have discovered that of all the medieval wedding gowns, the hottest commodity, and the most requested style, is "The Accolade Gown." Google it. Go ahead. You'll find countless interpretations of the dress by numerous seamstresses, some done more successfully than others. Of course, to re-do this gown precisely would likely cost a lot of money, with the broad band of embroidery on the hem, and the jeweled-plate girdle, but there are many relatively low-price options out there that are perfectly stunning as well.

My personal favorite is done by Rossetti Costumes (love the name, and they are my absolute favorite gown/costume shoppe I've found online). Their use of sari embroidery on the hem I feel comes closest to the original gown look (although I wish there was a vertical strap on that girdle).

The popularity of the gown as a wedding gown probably comes partially from the popularity of the art itself, partially from the extremely romantic mood of the painting, and partially from the fact that the dress is very much a straight-forward idea of the medieval gown, done in white.

Have you seen any other famous Pre-Raphaelite style gowns done as wedding dresses? Let me know!


Aurora said...

Oh, my word--I LOVE the glitter GIF!!!! That is TOO funny!!!! :D

You've just made my evening with that! :D

Kimber An said...

I've always loved that picture too. Did you notice Lady Eowyn's White Wool gown, the one she stands and watches Aragorn, Gandalf, Legoles, and Gimli approaching in Lord of the Rings The Two Towers movie is very close as well?

Grace said...

Welcome, Kimber!

I have indeed noticed that! Although I'd argue that with the non-puffed sleeves, it personally reminds me more of the Lady of Shallot than The Accolade, but the two gowns are rather similar as well :) And I love LOTR!

Aurora, Tom and I were making fun of that gif all evening.

Jennifer said...

Oh man, another great site. I love the Rossetti gowns--my favorite is Indira. Such beautiful images and so inspiring!

Grace said...

Rossetti gowns are so stunning!! I always get giddy when they sporadically post their new designs.

Anonymous said...

Do you know of any other costumers/seamstresses who use the pre-raphaelites as their inspiration?

Grace said...

Apologies for the delay, Anonymous! Two designers that spring to mind are


both of whom I hope to feature in future blogs :) I hope that helped!