Turkey Dressing: Feathered Fashions of the 1950s


1948 vintage turkey feather hats time and life magazine

Last week, I stumbled across a fascinating article from Life Magazine's archives on a 1948 wedding featuring turkey feather fashions. Barbara Orr Ehrhart's wedding gown used 37,500 turkey feathers and her bridesmaid's gowns were also decked in plumes. Photos by Charles E. Steinheimer, Life and Time Magazine

This bride wasn't the only 1950s lady to enjoy turkey feather fashions. Many hats, headpieces, brooches and dresses were embellished with the plumage of the traditional Thanksgiving bird.


  1. Very interesting. I am not sure what I think about this wedding dress and bridesmaids. It is something unique. The first photos with the lady's hats are great. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Incredible! There is so much here to be thankful for! Thanks for sharing this!

  3. Hunting is big in Texas and bow hunting wild turkey is something the men in my family do occasionally. All my life growing up at my grandparents house they had two sets (fans) of mounted turkey feathers. The thought of wearing those is so very weird!!

  4. I can imagine that the feathers are a lovely material to make dresses from lightweight and comfortably warm. But those clothes and asseccories in these photos are honestly hideous :)

  5. This is one of those vintage fashion stories that just puts a huge smile on your face! I've seen feather covered garments before, but never a whole wedding dress (let alone wedding party wardrobe). That must have taken a substantially long time to make. The results sure are eye-catchingly amazing!

    ♥ Jessica

  6. Well that's different! It wouldn't be my choice for a wedding dress but it does make for some interesting photos.


  7. I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don't know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.


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