Iconic Wedding Dresses : Elizabeth Taylor – All Eight!

Iconic Wedding Dresses : Elizabeth Taylor

As well as her stunning good looks and impressive list of classic films, legend of the Hollywood golden era Elizabeth Taylor was also well-known for her impressive list of weddings!

During her eight (yes eight!) marriages, she wore many wedding gowns that could go down as iconic; however, I thought it best to start at the beginning, back in 1950.

Elizabeth Taylor’s first marriage

Elizabeth’s first marriage was to Conrad Hilton, a member of the same family that produced a certain Paris Hilton a few decades later. The couple were married on the 6th of May, 1950 in Beverly Hills, California. Elizabeth wore a dress by Helen Rose, the same MGM film company designer that would create Grace Kelly’s iconic gown just a few years later.

It did not go unnoticed that her wedding gown bore a striking resemblance to the gown Helen Rose created for her in the classic film ‘Father of the Bride’, which had been released earlier the same year and sky-rocketed Liz to fame.

Elizabeth Taylor’s first wedding dress

Her white satin dress was accented with seed pearls and beading, and featured a sweetheart neckline that was covered with a beautiful chiffon overlay. The dress is said to have taken Helen Rose and her team around two months to create. Elizabeth also wore a three-quarter-length full veil attached with a small pearl tiara, which again is noticeably similar to the dress Rose created for ‘Father of the Bride’. Although this is hardly surprising; if asked to design two wedding dresses for the same bride in less than a year there are sure to be some similarities!

Below image top-right – The dress Elizabeth wore for ‘The Father of the Bride’; all the other images are of her own wedding dress

Unfortunately, Elizabeth’s first marriage only lasted around 8 months; she later reported that this was due to Conrad’s heavy drinking and gambling habits.

1952: Michael Wilding

A second marriage for both Liz and actor Wilding (who was 20 years her senior), Elizabeth wore a modest tea-length three-quarter-sleeve suit, also created by film costumiere Helen Rose, and wore an assortment of beautiful flowers in her hair.

1957: Michael Todd

Obviously not yet bored of saying ‘I do’, Liz and Michael Todd were actually married during two separate ceremonies; an all-Spanish civil ceremony to which she wore a petite off-the-shoulder gown, and a second Mexican wedding where she wore a tight-fitting V-neck.

Todd tragically died in a plane crash in 1958, (a heavy cold had prevented Elizabeth from flying), and Liz famously ran straight into the arms of Todd’s best man Eddie Fisher for comfort.

1959: Eddie Fisher

Although still married when comforting Elizabeth after the sudden loss of her husband Todd, Eddie went on to leave his wife for Liz, and the couple were married in 1959 at the Temple Beth Shalon in Las Vegas.

Elizabeth famously wore this emerald green silk dress, featuring a captivating loose hood, sheer sleeves and a tucked-in waist.

Fisher was a close friend of Elizabeth’s previous husband Michael Todd, who tragically died in a plane crash; theirs proved to be Taylor’s only marriage not to end in divorce. After Todd’s death, Fisher comforted Elizabeth, and the two began an affair even though at the time Fisher was married (with children) to American screen actress Debbie Reynolds. As you can imagine, it caused quite Hollywood scandal at the time!

Glamorous Emerald Green Gown

I suppose after her third marriage, Elizabeth would have felt rather silly wearing a dress similar to the traditional white bridal gown she had worn on her first wedding day. So this time around, Liz opted instead for rich emerald green that complemented her colouring wonderfully.

Her iconic short hooded silk chiffon gown came complete with matching shoes and a beautiful bouquet created from orchids and gypsophila.

1964: Richard Burton

After meeting on the set of the 1963 Hollywood hit ‘Cleopatra’, (and just 9 days after divorcing Eddie Fisher), Liz married her co-star Richard wearing this Empire-style yellow chiffon gown and an extravagant floral headpiece of lilies and hyacinths. Richard had presented Liz with a dazzling emerald and diamond brooch on the morning of their wedding which she proudly pinned to the collar of her dress.

1975: Richard Burton (again)

After just a year and a half apart, Richard and Liz tied the knot once again during a secret reunion in Africa. The couple dressed in summery, casual clothes for the simple ceremony, which took just 20 minutes to complete.

1976: John Warner

Liz took her seventh procession up the aisle in 1976 with politician John Warner.

1991: Larry Fortensky

After taking a long break from any formalised relationships, Liz married construction worker Larry Fortensky at Michael Jackson’s Neverland ranch wearing a flamboyant floor-length off-the-shoulder Valentino gown. After seven failed marriages, and reporting “This is it, forever”, the couple sadly divorced five years later and Liz never remarried.

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