Tudor Kings Henry VIII and Queens Clothing
King Henry VIII is shown in his portraits wearing incredibly sumptuous, rich clothing. The clothing that was made for the king was made from only the finest materials that were available at the time. The materials used in his clothing included silk, taffeta and velvet as well as calico, brocade and the finest linen. Aside from the richness of his clothing he was also bedecked in jewels, with rings on almost every finger. Gold and pearls as well as diamonds were regularly on display about the person of the king.
The King's Attire during Tudor Period had a Style
A new style and elegance had been introduced into Tudor fashion by the influences of the continent, including major influences from the court of Italy and Spain. Typically the clothing of a Tudor King such as Henry VIII would include a number of layers, each designed to make the final appearance more impressive. He would wear a tight fitting waistcoat that would be fastened with a number of tags, along with close fitting breeches; both of which were designed to emphasise the king's figure.
His doublet would be tailored to emphasise the broadness of his shoulders and hips. His codpiece would be oversized and bedecked with jewels. His sleeves would be puffed and slashed and styled in such a way as to make him look broader at the shoulder. His mantle, trimmed with the finest fur available would remain open.
The hat worn by the king would be rich with feathers and decoration. His chain of office would be displayed proudly on his chest. The shoes worn by King Henry VIII were made of black leather and were slightly padded. Jewelled buckles and other ornamentation would be attached to his clothing and person, as well as a ring for every finger.
Colours Worn by the Tudor King were the Richest for showing off
The king would wear the richest of colours, the majority of which were denied to all but a few of the nobles of the court. The colours that he wore such as gold, crimson, silver and purple were all denied to the lower classes. His colours indicated that he held the greatest power, the greatest wealth and the greatest control of all. While gold was a significant colour, the use of purple was extremely limited.
The use of purple fabric was off limits for all but the King, his Dukes, Marquis and Earls and the Knights of the Garter. The colours worn by the nobles of the country indicated where they came in the social ranking of the time. It would be easy for a noble to walk into the court and recognise his peers as their clothing would be of a similar style and colour as his own. This is all because of the sumptuary laws which were passed. Not only did they direct what could be worn by whom as befits their social status, it also ensure that the cost of each level of clothing was limited, reducing the opportunity for ostentation on the part of the lords.