My original thought was to make this a post of men's and women's Tudor costumes throughout film and television, but I quickly realized that there are far too many beautiful costumes, so this will only cover my favorite women's costumes. I'm sure there are MANY other beautiful costumes that should be included, but these are some of the most obvious that came to mind. Feel free to add your favorites as well!
I love this simple golden dress that Natalie Dormer wore in The Tudors. Although this show did not have many historically accurate costumes, I do think this was one of the closest. The floral skirt was beautiful and the entire dress was understated and simple. Natalie wore this dress many times during the series!
This is an absolutely beautiful dress - again, simplistic and more accurate than many of the others. I had trouble finding a good picture of the entire dress, but I thought this was a good picture to use because I also liked the winter cloak that Natalie wore - though I'm not sure about the hat!
If I were more knowledgable about Tudor clothes, I would know if this was an accurate dress for the time period or not. It looks more Elizabethan to me, but regardless, I think it's beautiful! I love how the style looks on Natalie, and the hat makes for a good accent.
Again, probably the most accurate Tudor costumes from The Tudors, it even has bell sleeves - though smaller than they probably should have been. It is a gorgeous dress that is shown in Anne Boleyn's execution scene.
This is my favorite gown from Anne of the Thousand Days, which typically had much more authentic-looking costumes than The Tudors did. Genevieve Bujold looks beautiful in this costume, and I love the beadwork on the top, though I know it's hard to see in this picture.
Similar to the brown dress in The Tudors, I love the bell sleeves on this dress, worn by Genevieve Bujold. The french hood is also beautiful and has the authentic hair covering.
I believe this is a deleted scene from The Other Boleyn Girl, but I love this dress, worn by Natalie Portman. It also has the hair covering and french hood, with beautiful sleeves and an ornate golden design. By far my favorite costume from this movie!
I love Jane Seymour's Christmas gown from The Tudors. Anabelle Wallis had several beautiful gowns, though very few of them were accurate. This is one of the few that I think was both gorgeous and more realistic. I can't quite tell what the sleeves look like, but I adore the top!
Anne of Cleves
I didn't care for most of Joss Stone's dresses in The Tudors, but this one (from season four) was gorgeous. The headpiece leaves something to be desired, but the bodice is beautiful and the beadwork is great. I also love the brooch, which looks to be accurate based on pictures of real Tudor brooches I have seen.
I think this dress is beautiful, worn by Joely Richardson, and the slashed sleeves aren't frequently seen in other costumes in The Tudors.
I love the sleeves and beading on this dress! Personally, I think Sarah Bolger has some of the best costumes in The Tudors, and this is definitely one of my favorites. I think I have a thing for brown Tudor dresses...
There is so much to love about this costume. First of all, it is so ornate and the designs on the bodice are beautiful. The sleeves are also beautiful, and the jewelry and french hood are perfect. This is one of the best costumes in the entire show, in my opinion!
This is a beautiful and bold gown that Cate Blanchett wore in Elizabeth: The Golden Age. I think it's perfect for her and the ruff around her neck is understated enough to be pretty (I usually hate those!)
I think this is the best cotume for Elizabeth's speech to the troops at Tilbury. This one, worn by Helen Mirren in Elizabeth I is both feminine and fit for a warrior queen.
This dress, worn by Joely Richardson in Anonymous, is a beautiful and understated Elizabeth gown, with sleeves that I haven't seen very often in Tudor film. I also like the sheer detail at her chest. It is perfect for a young Elizabeth.
Glenda Jackson epitomizes the English queen with this regal gown in Elizabeth R. Everything about it looks absolutely perfect for an Elizabethan costume, and it may as well be a painting of the real queen herself.
I hope you've enjoyed my costume choices for Tudor actresses! I'd love to know your thoughts about these costumes, as well as those I haven't mentioned. Feel free to attach pictures below this post or on my Facebook page!
This is a topic that I am very interested in, and I think a lot of other Tudor enthusiasts are, too. Throughout history, we see so many different styles of clothing - variations in different countries, and especially in different time periods. I find that women's style is more interesting than men's style, but maybe that's just because I'm a woman. Women's Tudor style is my favorite period of clothing style. I think the dresses the women wore were fantastic, and so much more intricate than some of the clothes before and after this time. In this blog post, I'll cover some of the main pieces of clothing worn during the Tudor days. I hope you enjoy!
Here is a beautiful movie still from "The Other Boleyn Girl," depicting Mary and Anne Boleyn. This picture shows the women wearing traditional dresses for women of noble birth. The dresses are not too intricate, but they are more formal than what a lower-class woman would wear. In this scene, the girls are preparing for a visit from King Henry VIII, so they are looking their best. Here, they are also shown wearing a traditional English headpiece, called a French Hood. Mary has a piece in the back that covers her hair, which was common among married women (to show modesty). Anne's however, leaves her hair free-flowing, showing herself as an unmarried virgin.
This picture shows 3rd wife, Jane Seymour wearing another popular headpiece, the Gable Hood. This style was much more common among more Conservative women, as it covered more of the head. Gable Hoods became popular in the early 1500's, and were originally designed with long pieces of fabric extending down on either side of the face. They were also significantly more pointed at the top, resembling a house. Over time, the design of the hood became less dramatic and more widely-worn by women of importance in England. It is much different from the French Hood, which is much more underestated, and was considered scandalous when it was first worn. Anne Boleyn popularized that crescent-shaped, and often-times pearl-or-jewel-adorned headpiece during her time at King Henry's court.
There are many other headpieces from the time period, such as the Flat Hood, the Atifet, the Coif, the Diadem, the Wreath, and of course crowns, hats with feathers, veils, and Bag Snoods (the nets that extend from a headpiece and cover a woman's hair). However, the two I mentioned were the most popular during the time period, so we're going to move on to another interesting women's fashion - the Neck Ruff. This was a popular fashion item during and after Queen Elizabeth's reign, although not one of my favorites. It came in various sizes and styles, and it was quite popular among very noble and royal women. Some women also wore it as more of a high collar on their dresses - (picture the evil queen in Snow White's collar).
Another interesting piece of women's fashion is the different styles of sleeves. Here is a picture of the young Princess Elizabeth, wearing a popular style, known as Trumpet or Bell Sleeves. These sleeves start out tight around the upper-arm, and then flow out from above the elbow to the wrist. I commonly associate these sleeves with the Medieval Times, as they were also worn in that period. Another style is the Puffed Sleeve. These are just as they sound - puffed and rounded around the entire arm. Queen Elizabeth wore these sleeves more than any other - see her picture above. Hanging Sleeves were also worn - very much like the Trumpet Sleeves, they hung down farther and the fabric would sometimes reach all the way to the floor. Slashed Sleeves were more popular in Spain, Italy, and Portugal, untilt he Elizabethan Era, and they are just as they sound, as well - slashed in various places, showing multiple colors. One more popular sleeve style is shown in the first picture of this blog post, where only the shoulder part of the sleeve is ruffed, leaving the rest of the sleeve slender and tight around the woman's arm.
Of course, another piece of women's fashion, and indeed a necessity, was the Corset - no doubt, one of the women's favorite pieces, (haha). Although this corset is made of fabric and broom-straw, many of them were actually made from iron, bone, and wood - ouch. Naturally, they were designed to make a woman appear as slender as possible, showing a tiny waste and fuller hips, while maintaining a straight and perfect posture- (the wooden beams in the corsets would force your body into position). Most corsets were laced, either in the front or back, and were kept quite tight to ensure that the corset was doing its job. As fashions evolved, the corset was either used to flatten or raise a woman's chest. Many women who were not accustomed to wearing corsets suffered broken ribs and breathing troubles - I wonder why...
The last piece of clothing I'm going to talk about is called a Farthingale. This piece was worn underneath a woman's dress and acted as a hoop skirt, fanning out the gown so it did not gather up by her legs and feet and cause her to trip. To watch a woman walk in one of those gowns is beautiful - watching the fabric cascade around her and always remain in place - they had the Farthingale to thank for that! A pretty smart design, if you ask me.
Unfortunately, women's shoes were covered by their long dresses, and it would have been inappropriate for a woman to reveal her feet and ankles in public, so it is hard to say what those looked like. However, historians believe that women and men alike would have worn flat, low-cut slippers. Noble women often had shoes made of silk and thin leather.
Usually, it would take a noble woman about an hour to get dressed, given all the pieces of clothes they had to wear - (and I didn't even explain all of them!). Shoes, stockings, and pieces of jewelry usually went on first, as they were easier and quicker to put on. The gowns, at times being very grand and ornate, would require assistance from other ladies and maids, and of course the headpieces and veils also required help.
I hope you enjoyed my blog about women's fashion in the Tudor Dynasty! If anyone has any pictures of their favorite Tudor dresses, please share them!
I'm the Tudor Enthusiast... Offering information and opinions, answering your questions and asking some of my own! Thanks for reading!