Rate the dress

Rate the Dress: Sophia of Hanover

Last week you decreed that Whistler’s Symphony in White was slightly out of tune, giving it a respectable but not brilliant 7 out of 10.

Will this weeks post sing a different tune? Last time you looked at a portrait of the mother of a British monarch (OK, so only Prince Phillip, so not quite a monarch!), you heartily approved.

Will Sophia of Hanover (14 October 1630 — 8 June 1714), mother of George the First of England, have the same luck, or will you find her exotic outfit too outlandish?

Sophia of Hanover as an Indienne, 1644. Painted by her sister, Elisabeth of Bohemia, Princess Palatine

 Sophia of Hanover is shown in 17th century fancy dress as an Indienne princess in a portrait painted by her rather talented sister, Elisabeth of Bohemia.

How do you feel about the pairing of a classic white slipper satin gown with a fanciful feather headdress and the tasseled and feathered polychromatic cloak? Picture perfect? Or positively provincial?

Rate the dress on a scale of 1 to 10



  1. n4c4c4 says

    I love it. It's beautiful. It's great to see that even back then, people still want to dress up in cultures outside of their own. The red makes it striking.

  2. Hana - Marmota says

    I don't know… I like it, and yet I don't.
    I don't know whether I should prefer the reds and the wild, or her neat curls, silk dress and pearls.
    So I can't decide, and therefore I give it a 6. Because, after all, I do like it some.

  3. GentlewomanThief says

    I like it and I think it's for that lovely, lovely red and how well it suits her. She gets a 7 – Extra marks for the matching lipstick. Oh, and I also like her pearls – such a great colour!

  4. Rowenna says

    It's just so rich and sumptuous, with all that fabric and texture! And I love the "matching" background…reminds me of those cheesy theme shots at photography studios 🙂

    8 for the luxurious drape of fabric, the beautiful gems and pearls, and her kicky lipstick.

  5. Madame Ornata says

    Yes it is v odd but I like the 'headdress' and other dangly red thing in the front(a wrap?). It looks very like a roosters comb, hilarious when I realised and probably not what the wearer intended. Still I just about fell of my seat gaffawing, and I adore chooks. Anything that makes me laugh that much deserves a 5 for the giggles alone and I'll add another 2 for the neckline so it's a 7 from me. Cluck cluck cluck book erk!

  6. The Dreamstress says

    Hahahaha Madame Ornata! 17th century Chicken dress!

  7. zhozho22 says

    I wonder if the cloak and headress were original and brought back from South America, and Sophia was dressing up in them. The spear also looks as though it may have been authentic, this is the love of the exotic, the different, the other, which I find so fascinating. She is imagining herself as this wild exotic creature outside of herself, and by doing this giving herself a moment to let this side of herself live.

  8. I’ve just realised who that “Elisabeth of Bohemia, Princess of Palatine” must have been. Wow. The Winter Queen!
    (I’m kinda not used to the “Falc” of Czech language being “Palatine” in English.)

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