Your details


Update your details || || Logout


In this section:

1920s silver wedding dress goes on display

— October 2014

Associated media

Muriel Cavaghan's silver wedding dress. Courtesy Tullie House

Tullie House is presenting rare opportunity to see one of the most romantic and extravagant wedding dresses in its collections. Muriel Cavaghan wore the dress for her marriage to David Kerr Duff at Charlotte Street Congregational Church, Carlisle, on 7 June 1927. Muriel was the second daughter of Thomas Ray Cavaghan, co-founder of Cavaghan and Grey in 1912.

Made in the then-fashionable mediaeval style, the focus of the dress is the luxurious silver laméfabric made from silver thread. Although silver signifies purity, this fabric was chosen because wedding dresses copied evening styles at the time.

The dress is trimmed with artificial pearls and has an elaborate train with lover’s knot and wax orange blossom spray along with a matching headdress.  Bulloughs Department Store on Castle Street, Carlisle, made the dress to the bride’s own design.

Descendants of the bride donated the dress to the museum in 1988 and the dress was fully conserved in 1999.

Melanie Gardner, Curator of Art said:

We are delighted to have the opportunity to display this stunning dress which is one of the highlights of Tullie House’s costume collection. What makes this dress so special is that it was worn by a local bride and made to her own design by Bulloughs, which really brings it to life.

We would be very interested to hear your story, if you (or any of your relatives) attended the wedding or were involved with the planning of this celebration.

Events Programme

Stunning in Silver Spotlight talks

1p.m. & 3p.m.

Wednesday 10 December & Thursday 11 December

Join Melanie Gardner, Curator of Art, for this short talk about the silver wedding dress and discuss other original costume from the collections.

Tickets: £5 and includes gallery admission

Afternoon Tea


Wednesday 10 December & Thursday 11 December

Treat yourself with a sumptuous afternoon tea within Tullie House’s historic settings.  Enjoy a selection of finger sandwiches, cakes, scones and savouries with lashings of tea and coffee.

Tickets: £12.00 or £18.00 to include a glass of house champagne

Fashions from the past study session


Thursday 8 January 2015

Focusing on Tullie House’s important collection of women’s costume, Melanie Gardner, Curator of Art, will talk about the silver wedding dress on display and other original costume from the collections.

Tickets: £15.00, £12.00 concessions

To book tickets, please call the Box Office on 01228 618700 or visit

Other interesting content

Read news from the world of art