Marie-Antoinette… What a cliché subject right? But, hold on! This is not another cliché article! I promise!
While reading Caroline Weber’s “Queen of Fashion“, I found so many new things I didn’t know about the girl who changed the course of the fashion revolution. I started listing the interesting facts as I always do (click here for full list), and it turned out that I kept finding one fact after the other, even though I’ve known about this subject from a long time now. It was like a non-stopping conversation with a little piece of the history of fashion.
Now, before I list the 10 facts, I thought about a quote from one of my favorite movies. This quote is not only a little bit funny, but a little reflective of how timeless a face and an image can be, no matter the time or age that we’re living in.
The quote is from Simon Curtis‘ My Week with Marilyn, in the scene when Marilyn visits the royal library and opens a book full of Leonardo da Vinci‘s sketches. She stares at the women he sketched during his drawing period, and then she says: “I hope I look this good when I’m 400.”
Smiling after this quote, here comes the list:
1. Marie-Antoinette‘s complete and real name was Maria Antonia Josepha Johanna.
2. Marie-Antoinette was the youngest among her 10 brothers and sisters.
3. The team who not only spent most of the day-time around the queen, but who was in charge of designing Marie-Antoinette‘s clothes and outfits was called “the ministry of fashion.”
4. Before the opposition stormed Versailles, Marie-Antoinette‘s clothing and accessory’ collection occupied at least three entire royal rooms.
5. After Marie-Antoinette was beheaded, she was such an icon among the people, that the wealthy and royal ladies wore a red ribbon around their necks to remember and honor the French queen.
6. Marie-Antoinette was a descendant of the founder of the Roman Empire, Augustus.
7. The french court requested a special service for the queen and king, leaving Marie-Antoinette with 200 servants for her daily activities.
8. An iconic and fashionable item from the sixteenth century was the wig that both men and women used to wear. These wigs were called the poufs. Marie-Antoinette, as the fashion revolutionary that she was, had as main goal to be the most fashionable woman alive and what better way to be than demanding the design of the poufs unique and one of a kind? So unique in fact, that each pouf measured at least three feet high (91.4 cm) and usually, depicted historical scenes.
9. You probably know the basic features of a corset. But, during the sixteenth century, the corset was utilized for preventing the deformation of the human body and enhance the formation of a descent waist. From age two, children were forced to use this, no matter the gender, and Marie-Antoinette wasn’t an exception.
10. Marie-Antoinette was probably the first creative director of one of the first magazines in the world. What?! Yes! During the sixteenth century the french fashion designers, such as Rose Bertin, used to “publish” their work through “magazines” or catalogues called the Galleries des Modes. Bertin was one of the queen’s personal fashion designers and because of this, the queen, as maximum authority figure that she was, selected the styles and trends that were going to be distributed after she wore them. Who knew right?