Elizabeth Taylor Gina Fratini Wedding Dress

Jan Leeming

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Me looking brave before taking to the air (and the wing) of the plane. Wow, it was cold !! But the whole experience was totally exhilarating.



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Jan's Blog

Computers and the internet are amazing things. One of my concerns with putting together this site was that it could remain current, yet with all my travelling I've often much to say, but little time to say it. Years ago when reading the news it would take me days on end to reply to the kind letters people sent. Now, with the magic of the modern age, I can keep you up to date with what I'm doing and other events in my life.


Date: 18th February 2012


I enjoy reading Biographies and Autobiographies and recently began Melvyn Bragg’s Autobiog. of Richard Burton published many years ago.

There are copious photos in the book and on perusing them I came across a b/w photo of Burton and Taylor’s second marriage in 1975. The ceremony was in Chobe Game Park, Botswana. And to my astonishment Elizabeth was wearing the Gina Fratini gown about which I wrote a blog a short while ago. I’d seen it featured as one of the items to be auctioned after her death but had not realised it was her ‘Wedding Dress’.

I don’t think any other designer ever achieved the romantic, fairytale creations which were Gina’s trademark. And she always used natural materials – no polyester linings for her. I’ve still got several of her creations and it is a joy to look at the layers of tulle, silk etc which formed the underskirts of her evening dresses. I remember her telling me how she wept when she saw Princess Diana’s wedding gown and realised at once why it looked so crumpled. Much was due to static electricity and the outer gown ‘sticking’ to a layer underneath which should have been separated by a layer of natural material – not sure what she suggested.

Unfortunately in days gone by people were allowed to smoke at functions- even on the Dance floor and someone burnt holes in the long flowing ‘wings’.  My mother had to cut them and turn them into ‘sleeves’ so mine is slightly altered. Nevertheless, I love the dress and despite the moths having had a nibble at the feathers, I’d never get rid of it.

Elizabeth Taylor's  gown was in delicate shades of green. I cannot adequately describe the beauty of the dress so would you mind if I show a photo of me wearing my ‘pink version’.

Anyway – here is what I call my Gina Fratini Butterfly Dress. The photo was taken by Alan Olley at the session when they dressed me up as Audrey Hepburn and I begged him to take a photo in my Gina gown.


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