Iconic wedding dresses of the ’40s

Iconic wedding dresses of the ’40s

Bridal fashion in the 1940s can effectively be divided into two sections; wartime and postwar. Wartime rations meant that wedding dresses in the early 40’s were simple, practical, and often borrowed, or were handmade from cheap fabrics like Rayon – whereas after the war, although rationing was still in place, gowns gradually became more detailed once again.

Carole Landis, 1943

American actress Carole Landis married her third husband Thomas Wallace in London, wearing this gorgeous silk gown (being a world-famous actress she was able to afford this luxurious fabric). The design featured a sweetheart neckline, tucked-in waist and long, pointed sleeves which were the height of fashion at the time.

Marilyn Monroe, 1942

Upon her first marriage in 1942, aged just 16, Monroe married James Dougherty wearing this traditional full-length lace gown and short veil.

Princess Elizabeth, 1947

Similarly to most wartime and immediately postwar brides, in 1947 the future Queen Elizabeth saved up her ration coupons over the months in order to purchase enough material needed to create her stunning satin gown. The modest yet extravagant ivory dress was created by English designer Norman Hartnell, and featured floral embroidery representing the national emblems of England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales.

Follow these links to view more iconic wedding gowns from the ’20s and ’30s

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