ANNE GREENE here:
The war years of 1941 to 1945 were filled with romance amid pain and suffering. During World War II many women arranged wartime weddings within a few days to accommodate a boyfriend coming home on a 24 hour leave, before being sent to combat. Frequently there was no time to get a special dress and often women could not afford the clothing coupons needed for a wedding dress.
Nevertheless happy weddings took place, with family members donating small amounts of staples like sugar, flour and eggs so that the war bride could bake a wedding cake.
Women borrowed hats, raided gardens for flowers and loaned wedding dresses. Bridesmaids reused dresses worn to other weddings. This sometimes gave a mix and match look to bridal group photographs. Most brides wore clothes so that every item could be used again in a different venue. Friends and family rallied around loaning a hat, a bit of lace, or a dress.
A bride often wore her hair high on top of her head in a waved roll. Abundant hair was helpful, but lack of it did not stop women from adopting the style. Ever resourceful, they used old stockings rolled up to create foundations to be covered by their own hair. This style became popular since it offered the glamour lacking in other areas of wartime life. The look is film star glam.
Army, Navy and Air Corps personnel usually wore their uniforms when they wed. In my book, ANGEL WITH STEEL WINGS, two ladies wed wearing their Women Airforce Service Pilots uniform.
In 1944, an American B-29 pilot was returning with his crew from a bombing raid over Japan, when the plane’s engine caught fire. The pilot used his parachute to jump from the burning aircraft. Later the chute helped him survive by providing shelter until he was rescued. After returning home from war, he proposed to his girlfriend. She used the life-saving parachute as material for her wedding dress. She modeled her dress on one which appeared in the movie Gone With The Wind. The bride used the original parachute strings to create the train in the back. I can think of no other wedding dress that would be as meaningful as one that saved the life of the groom.
In my World War II historical romance, ANGEL WITH STEEL WINGS, you will find two romantic war time weddings.
Do you have a story about a World War II wedding from your grandmother or mother? Would you leave a comment and share?
ANNE GREENE delights in writing about wounded heroes and gutsy heroines. Her second novel, a Scottish historical, Masquerade Marriage, won three prestigious book awards. The sequel Marriage By Arrangement finalled in a number of contests. A Texas Christmas Mystery also won several awards. Look for Anne's soon to be released WWII historical romance, Angel With Steel Wings. Anne’s highest hope is that her stories transport the reader to awesome new worlds and touch hearts to seek a deeper spiritual relationship with the Lord Jesus. Anne makes her home in McKinney, Texas. She loves to talk with her readers. Buy Anne’s books at http://www.Amazon.com. Talk with Anne on twitter at @TheAnneGreene. View Anne’s books, travel pictures and art work at http://www.AnneGreeneAuthor.com.
Learn more about Anne as well as get tips on writing award-winning books at http://www.anneswritingupdates.blogspot.com.
I enjoyed reading about war time weddings and how resourceful the brides were.ReplyDelete
Makes you proud to be an American doesn't it, Rebecca!!! My aunt married when her navy man returned from the war. They were both still very young by today's standards, but enjoyed a long, prosperous and fruitful marriage.Delete
My parents weren't old enough to marry or serve in WWII, and my grandparents were already married, so my family missed out on wartime romance. On the bright side, no one was killed.ReplyDelete
Hi Terri, That was a very bright side. So many families lost loved ones.Delete
Author Nancy Moser's father served in WWII and did not meet his oldest child until she was two years old, because her Daddy was fighting in the Pacific. Can you imagine that poignant homecoming? Marguerite shared some of their letters via Dearest Marguerite, a wonderful memoir. My Dad wasn't accepted into the service but worked stateside as part of the Conservation Corps. My father-in-law just graduated to heaven last week and among his things we found love letters from his father to his bride ... mailed from Europe during WWI. I loved this post and the countless stories associated with the Greatest Generation.ReplyDelete
Thank you so much, Stephanie, for the lovely memories you shared. I think it would have been so very difficult to marry one day and say goodbye the next. With a husband in Special Forces who served a year in Iraq and two years in Korea as a peacekeeper, I can really empathize with those women who saw their men go off for four years of combat. They truly were the Greatest Generation.Delete
Thank you for sharing these glimpses of World War II weddings!ReplyDelete
Hi Britney, You're such a faithful reader. It's great to see you here each time! You must be a history buff.ReplyDelete
I had a husband and a son in Iraq at the same time during the Bush years.ReplyDelete
And now I have a grandson training to be an Army combat medic and another grandson who will leave for the Air Force shortly. My father was a Marine, but that was long after WWII. So our family serves four branches of the military, Army, Air Force, and Marine--and that Uncle who was Navy!ReplyDelete
I really liked the story of the parachute and wedding dress! Very meaningful. My parents married during the war but not because of soldiering but because they were going to Moody Bible Institute and had to be married for some months in order to go as a married couple. They married quickly in N. Ireland; Mom wore a red suit; and so it went. Still married for 68 years and counting. sm wileygreen1(at)yahoo(dot)comReplyDelete
Sharon what a lovely story. My ancestors came from N. Ireland in the Ulster area. I love how you know your Mom wore a red suit. I also have a lot of love for Moody Bible Institute as they published my first book, Trail of Tears. So nice to talk with you here. I have a picture of the thatched roof home where my great-grandmother lived in Ireland. I hope to see you here again!ReplyDelete
Love this post! My current WIP takes place during WWII and the heroine and her bombardier fiance elope in order to be married before he was sent overseas. In my research I found that it wasn't unusual for JPs and judges to overlook formalities such as blood tests, waiting periods, age, etc., in sympathy for the men and women in uniform. My heroine was married in a skirt and sweater. Evidently they did what they had to do during those difficult days.ReplyDelete
Hi Golden, so good to see you here. Yep, women did what they had to do to get married. And during WWII everyone had a stake in the war and everyone went all out to win the war. So if a man wanted to get married before he went into combat, the authorities did what they could to see that he married the woman of his dreams who would keep his morale high. I love the personal stories about the war and what our families did. Thanks for stopping by.ReplyDelete
I was married here in 2012 and it is a fantastic venue. The food, service and mostly the staff were truly amazing. Though we had to sort some bill issues which were about to put a damper on my magical day!ReplyDelete
location for weddings