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Saturday, October 22, 2011

Don't Forget the Flower Girl

Nadir Quinto - Cinderella

Some of the most popular posts in my blog have been those with a bridal theme.  Vintage Brides (posted 12 March 2011), a selection of magazine photographs from 1958 has held the top spot of the month for quite some time.  More Vintage Brides (posted 17 July 2011) and Wonderful Weddings (posted 1 May 2011, dedicated to fairytale illustrations) have also moved in and out of the top ten.  As my blog is largely a celebration of childhood I decided to devote this week's post to the youngest member of the wedding party - the flower girl.

I was a flower girl once in 1966 aged 7.  I had an over the top beehive hairdo decorated with a comb of silk flowers (daisies) and a bow. My dress (pink) was a stiff empire line style and I carried a bouquet of dark red rosebuds styled to within an inch of their life.  It was a magical experience and I felt just like a princess.

Nadir Quinto - Detail from Cinderella

The first illustrations I have chosen are by the wonderful artist and illustrator Nadir Quinto.   They are beautifully detailed and I think in both the flower girl completely steals the show.

Nadir Quinto - Dick Wittington

Nadir Quinto - Detail from Dick Wittington

The flower girl from Merrill's paper doll book of The Heavenly Blue Wedding (posted 24 Feb 2011).

This delightful illustration by H. M. Brock is from a story called 'Cherry Charmer'.  I have included the whole wedding procession first and then enlarged its component parts to highlight some of the lovely detail.

HM Brock - Cherry Charmer

HM Brock - Cherry Charmer

HM Brock - Cherry Charmer

HM Brock - Cherry Charmer

The next wonderfully romantic painting called 'The Marriage of Beatrice' is the work of Raffaello Sorbi (1844-1931).  It was completed in 1928 when he was 84 years old.  The scene portrays a wedding from the late Middle Ages or early Renaissance but the figure of Beatrice herself gives away the fact that it was painted much later.  Today we take for granted the image of a bride in white gown and veil but this tradition only really started in the 19th century. 

Raffaello Sorbi - The Marriage of Beatrice

In my post of Vintage Brides I included this photograph of a dress I longed to own as a child.  I would study it for hours and dreamt of wearing one just like it.

Modern Bride 1958

The same magazine (Modern Bride - 1958) also included the dress shown below that I have not posted before.  Same pose, very similar style, but the darker colour and heavier material never had the same appeal for me.

Modern Bride 1958

The two mirror images of the double sided flower girl in Saalfield's Double Wedding paper doll book from 1964. (posted 21 May 2011)

This lovely wedding scene is from the Jack and Jill Christmas annual of 1963 and is part of a series called 'Our Village - The Story of Cherry Green.'   Once again I am showing the full painting first and then highlighting some of the detail.

I'm not sure if the next three paper dolls are part of a wedding book or if they belong to a different occasion.  They are not in great condition, but I think are still very pretty.  When I was a child I was given some paper doll sets second hand by various family members (cut dolls, no covers etc).  This was one of them and as can be seen belongs to my original collection.  If anyone can identify the book please leave a comment and let me know. 

*Update* - Retha from the Paperdolls and Toys blog left a comment confirming that these dolls are not from a wedding book as I suspected but from a paper doll set called Seven and Seventeen.  She also emailed me a link a the Picasa Web Album that contains the complete book.  It is beautiful - I'm so glad to be able to see it again in context. 

The flower girl from Whitman's Bridal Cut Outs -1966 (posted 10 Sept 2011).

She is not a flower girl and this was not a happy occasion for her, but who can resist Ron Embleton's beautiful image of Snow White as her father marries his haughty new bride.  Ron Embleton (my favourite artist) has featured frequently in my blog and I have always wanted to include this particular illustration.  

Ron Embleton - Snow White

And of course when I was married in 1996 my own retinue contained a flower girl or two!  


Nelly said...

How lovely is your wedding and how beautiful you look Now wheres the one of you as a flower girl?

GardenofDaisies said...

You were such a beautiful bride!! I love all your paperdoll flower girls. I don't know how I have managed not to have any bridal paperdolls. I adore all of yours! I need to find a vintage one soon!

Kylie said...

I have been a bridesmaid twice and both outfits wouldn't be out of place with the more retro-ish ones you post on your (lovely and interesting) blog. Will have to post pics on mine one day x

p.s. I have to say that the aqua dresss I wore when I was ten or so was slightly unfortunate, as was my hair-do, but we are talking late 70's so what can you expect!

Sharon's Sunlit Memories said...

Thanks for the lovely comments - I don't think I have a photo of myself as a flower girl - I wish I did as I'd also like to see the dress (and hairstyle!) again!

Retha said...

Those girls you don't know if they were flower girls or not? They are from a Set called Seven and seventeen - big and little sister.

It had 4 dolls - a blonde 7-y.o. and 17 y.o. and a brunette 7 y.o. and 17 y.o.


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