Ceremonial gown, by Norman Hartnell, 1957, at the Victoria and Albert Museum. Designed specially for Queen Elizabeth II's state visit to Paris, April 8-11th, 1957. Decorated with French motifs, including the flowers of France and large gold bees, the emblem of Napoleon. Worn to the state dinner on the first night (Monday 8th April), hosted by President René Coty at the Elysée Palace, followed by a visit to the Opéra (see black-and-white photo, via romanbenedikhanson on Flickr).
Six Maids of Honour attended on Queen Elizabeth II at the 1953 coronation. They wore cream silk satin dresses edged with gold tissue with embroidery designs of trailing flowers and foliage. Designer Norman Hartnell planned for the embroidery to cascade do