Marie Antoinette

Topics: Marie Antoinette, Louis XVI of France, House of Habsburg Pages: 5 (665 words) Published: September 16, 2014
Marie Antoinette
FMM 1200

Marie Antoinette
Maria Theresa of Austria thought she was sealing “a favorable alliance between France and Austria” (New World Encyclopedia) by having her daughter, Maria Antonia Josepha Johanna, marry Louis XVI, but she was actually unknowingly giving her a chance to make fashion history. Life History

When Maria Antonia Josepha Johanna wed Louis XVI, she was told to leave everything behind; her Austrian clothes, possessions, servants, her animal and even her name was changed to Marie Antoinette. She was then dressed in French clothing and presented with jewels including “an elaborate diamond necklace which had belonged to Anne of Austria and pieces which had also belonged to Mary Queen of Scots and Catherine de' Medici. The large collection of gems was valued at approximately two million livres” (New World Encyclopedia). While being married, she wore “a dress decorated by large white hoops covered in diamonds and pearls” (New World Encyclopedia). After being so lavished upon, Marie Antoinette spent most of her time “socializing and indulging her extravagant tastes”. Because of all the things she was investing in and doing, rumors began spreading and people tended to blame her for all of France’s problems. After a while, debts in France started accumulating and ordinary French people were convinced it was a conspiracy between monarchs and the nobility. At one point, the royal family was imprisoned and by the time they returned, everything was in shambles. Revolutionaries were killing royals, including Louis XVI, whom was executed for treason. Eventually Marie Antoinette lost custody of her child and was also convicted of treason and beheaded by guillotine. Fashion Impact

Marie Antoinette was a fashion icon. She is remembered for her very high hairstyle, the pouf, her pricy parties, and massive wardrobe. “She had nearly 300 dresses made annually for her various social engagements” (Contributors, 2008) and even had her own fragrance made for her. She wanted to keep up appearances and be seen as a force to be reckoned with. Although she never created the clothes herself, she wanted to be one of the firsts to try something; be non-traditional. She wore the newest looks from Rose Bertin, “among them the provocative "robe a la polonaise," with its bosom-enhancing bodice and its billowy, ankle-baring skirts, the whole crowned by a pouf, a 3-foot mountain of powdered hair decked with plumes, veils, and other objects”(Hollander, 2006). Another dress of style she came to wear after becoming a mother is known as “chemise a la reine.” She stopped wearing all the glitz and glam that she had been known for and opting for a simpler look in her outfits. She “began wearing a light, shapeless dress called a gaulle. It was made of layers of simple muslin, loose-fitting and shaped by a sash tied around the waist. It also didn't have the usual panniers under the skirt, which were often so extreme that door frames had to be widened to accommodate dresses. It meant the material could mold around the legs, also shocking at the time”(Winterman, 2012). Critics of this type of dress said she looked as though she were wearing just undergarments. In conclusion, Marie Antoinette was not only a prominent figure in history, but she could also be noted as an important mention in fashion history as well. She paved the way for a new type of look and style that others during the time would not have ever thought of doing. References

Contributors. (2008, September 2). HowStuffWorks "Marie Antoinette Fashion". HowStuffWorks. Retrieved September 7, 2014, from http://history.howstuffworks.com/historical-figures/top-5-marie-antoinette-scandals5.htm#page=5 Hollander, A. (2006, November 3). What Marie Antoinette really wore.. Slate Magazine. Retrieved September 7, 2014, from http://www.slate.com/articles/arts/fashion/20 Marie Antoinette. (n.d.). - New World Encyclopedia. Retrieved September 7, 2014, from...

References: Contributors. (2008, September 2). HowStuffWorks "Marie Antoinette Fashion". HowStuffWorks. Retrieved September 7, 2014, from http://history.howstuffworks.com/historical-figures/top-5-marie-antoinette- scandals5.htm#page=5
Hollander, A. (2006, November 3). What Marie Antoinette really wore.. Slate Magazine. Retrieved September 7, 2014, from http://www.slate.com/articles/arts/fashion/20
Marie Antoinette. (n.d.). - New World Encyclopedia. Retrieved September 7, 2014, from http://www.newworldencyclopedia.org/ent
Winterman, D. (2012, February 17). Fashion: History 's shocking styles. BBC News. Retrieved September 7, 2014, from http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-16870841
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