After a weekend of a real-time wedding, Wedding Gown Game Day is here again. As most wedding guests spend the bulk of the ceremony looking at the back of the bride, the train is an important feature of the gown. The first question is – why are we even running this game? How different can one train be from another?
The answer is “very different”. Starting with the length, of course. Most (not all) of the royal gowns are “royal length” or over a meter (39 inches for the U.S. folks here). You will, however, find major variations in royal length.
Where is it attached? Is it a shoulder, or Watteau, train?
Does it have rounded corners? Square corners? A ruffle? Embellishments?
Is the train a court train, extending from the hem of the dress? It is a sweep train, extending from the waist? Is it an integral part of the skirt? Is it attached at the waist, with a detachable option?
Royal wedding gowns are a great place to ask these questions because the design options are endless. Each hofdame has her own preferences, and we will get the conversation started.
OC: I chose the train-iest of trains, then-Princess Margrethe’s train. It’s a trifecta of royalty – perfect for a Queen-to-be. Watteau. Six meters long. Square corners that echo the neckline. And finally, it carries the veil beautifully. No “two-layer train” here.
The Handbag: This was a very royal-adjacent wedding, but it fits our criteria so into the mix it goes. Lady Charlotte Wellesley married financier Alejandro Santo Domingo (uncle of Tatiana Santo Domingo) in an off-the-shoulder gown with a statement portrait neckline. The train – which I would describe as a modified Watteau since it doesn’t actually hit the shoulders – is attached under the neckline in some mysterious fashion. It’s also detachable, so the bride can wander freely once the ceremony is over.
LiL: I chose a train that I am very familiar with; the one attached to Princess Elizabeth’s Norman Hartnell gown. Made from imported Chinese silk, the 15-foot silk tulle train was attached at the shoulders and was embellished with transparent applique tulle embroidery featuring York roses, starflowers, ears of wheat, jasmine blossoms, and smilax leaves. Topping it all off were 10,000 seed pearls and crystals imported from the US. The veil was left purposely shorter than the train, which allowed for the exquisite embroidery to shine. If you want to read more about the gown, check out “The Gown” by Jennifer Robson.
LG: For me, the most important part of the train is that it looks like a continuation of the gown, or is in fact a continuation of the gown. So in a move guaranteed to shock most readers, I’m throwing Letizia Ortiz into the mix. Designed by Manuel Pertegaz in a gown cut continuosly from shoulder to the floor, the slim gown flows into a magnificent almost 15′ (4.5 m) long train; which is embroidered with fleur de lys, clovers, strawberry tree fruits and ears of wheat.
Note: We request that the winners from the Contemporary Top Five not be added to this poll. We’ve celebrated those gowns extensively, and we’d like to clear the field for new dresses (and trains!). As a reminder, the top five of the overall were Crown Princess Victoria, Crown Princess Mette-Marit, Beatrice Borromeo, Princess Eugenie, and Máxima Zorreguieta Cerruti.