American Friends Appeal

Queen Victoria's shoes: Help us to conserve a royal treasure

Queen Victoria's shoes: Help us to conserve a royal treasure

The Royal Ceremonial Dress Collection

In addition to the six historical sites of importance under our care, Historic Royal Palaces are also the custodians of The Royal Ceremonial Dress Collection, a collection of national and international importance.

The collection contains 10,000 items of historic dress from the 16th century to the present day, providing information about the history of fashion, life at court and the personal stories of key historical figures that connect directly to our palaces. Our collection contains items of clothing worn by royalty, including Queen Victoria.

Historic Royal Palaces are pleased to mark the 200th anniversary of Queen Victoria’s birth with a new exhibition and re-presentation of the rooms that the young Victoria spent her childhood in at Kensington Palace. The two new exhibitions will open at Kensington Palace in May 2019.

To support the new displays, our curatorial team were delighted to secure several items from a recent auction in Philadelphia. The acquisitions include items belonging to Queen Victoria.

Not only are these objects of historical significance; items of Queen Victoria’s dress rarely come onto public sale, but they will help to enrich the collection and help us to discover more about the personal taste of a Queen we think we know so well.

One item in particular, Queen Victoria's delicate silk satin shoes, are in need of extensive treatment. With your help, they will receive the best care by a leading textile conservator from Historic Royal Palaces Conservation and Collections Care team and be part of a new display at Kensington Palace for thousands of visitors to enjoy in 2019.

Help us conserve Queen Victoria's shoes

Designed and produced by the royal family's shoemaker of choice, Gundry & Sons, the shoes are a unique example of Queen Victoria's personal style during the 1840s, an interesting contrast to the swathes of black of her later life. Few of their type and style have survived from this period.

Conservators challenge!

To prevent further deterioration the shoes will require the painstaking work of one conservator for a period of 15 days. After treatment there are also costs to ensure the display and storage of these delicate items.

We invite our American Friends to sponsor the conservation and treatment of the shoes by raising $6,000 for the appeal.

Donating today will make a huge impact:

  • Donors to the US Appeal will help fund the specialist cleaning and treatment of clothing worn by Queen Victoria. We hope to display these objects for the opening of the new Victoria exhibitions in May 2019.
  • All donors will be thanked and recognized appropriately with our sincere appreciation and gratitude.
  • Donors will receive updates and news on the project.
  • Donors of $1,000+ will receive an invitation to the very special opening event at Kensington Palace in May 2019.
  • If more than $6,000 is raised, any subsequent donations will support the treatment of other garments belonging to Queen Victoria in time for the display in 2019.
  • Historic Royal Palaces, Inc. is classified as a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit. All donations are deductible for US tax purposes to the extent permitted by law.

Help us to give these rare items the care they deserve!

How to make a donation

We recommend donations of $50, $100, $200 and $1,000, but we are very grateful for any amount that you would generously like to donate.

Please contact us directly or make a donation online via our secure PayPal page.

Thank you for helping to conserve a royal treasure!

More information

For more information about the American Friends Appeal please contact the Development Department on +44(0)20 3166 6321, e-mail [email protected]   

Historic Royal Palaces, Inc. is a tax exempt public charity under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code and donations are tax deductible to the extent allowed by law.

Charity Number: EIN 31-178083

Historic Royal Palaces, Inc. are proud to be partners of #GivingTuesday. Donate today and be part of the global day of giving!

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