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Weekly Favorites: French Globe de Mariée

The tradition of Globe de Mariée Display pieces began in France, in the 1800′s. It was a display for married couples, to preserve their wedding souvenirs as well as tell the story of their wedding & life together. Placed prominently in the formal dining room, it held the Bride’s Crown, or Bridal Tiara made from fresh or wax Orange Blossoms, at times her Wax Floral Bouquet.

The bride & groom chose items for their personalized display such as mirrors, porcelain pieces, and ormolu {gold plated}cut-outs. Each had a special and very personal meaning to them, it was a symbol that told the story of the bridal couple. The number of small diamond-shaped mirrors represented the number of children the couple hoped for.

Over the years special items were added, photographs, little locks of their babies hair, jewelry, more ormolu symbols.  Each was carefully pinned to the velvet or silk cushion, most of the cushions were Red, although Pink, Blue and Gold were also produced.

During the height of their popularity in the Napoleon III era, there were many ready-made bases couples could pick from, then add their choice of gilded symbols, mirrors, porcelain flowers, and other gilt decorations, making each one of these highly personal, and unique.  After all the ormolu pieces were attached by the jeweler, the display piece was covered with a very fine, thin and handblown dome.

Each symbol had meaning:

The Bird: The symbol of Love.
Leaves: Longevity of the Marriage Union.
Orange Blossoms: Virginity.
Roses: for eternal love.
Daisies: for purity and innocence.
Ivy Leaves: commitment to each other.
Lime Leaves: symbolized fidelity.
Oak Leaves: for strength and longevity of the couple. 

 

Chestnut Leaves: for links to others.
Fig Leaves: for prosperity.
The tree: a symbol of love and strength.
Four Leaf Clover: Good Fortune {luck}
Sheaves of Wheat: fertility, and also to the resurrection of life. 
Cherries: for protection against bad fortune.
Clusters of Grapes: prosperity.
The Dove: symbolized the desire for peace in the home.
The Bird holding a laurel wreath: symbolized that as a bird makes its nest,
so does the woman build her family.

 

The mirrors also had meaning, the shapes, the number as well as the position of each mirror symbolized different
things.

Each mirror had meaning:

The central {largest} mirror evoked the reflection of the soul, symbolizing the truth.

Rectangular mirrors were related to the number of years between the couple’s meeting and their promised marriage.

The oval mirrors were good luck gifts offered by the bridesmaids.

The number of small diamond-shaped mirrors represented the number of children the couple wished for.

The trapezoidal mirror symbolized the perfect agreement.

{an antique French Bridal Crown from the 1800′s featuring many different shapes and sizes of flowers, all wax.}

Highly collected, it is rare to find these beautiful wedding domes and collectible pieces in good condition.  The glass domes were extremely fragile, so to be able to obtain a display with a dome is quite rare.  Once you have seen one, you will fall under their spell!

If you want to romance your Home and Garden with antique and vintage treasures to make you smile each time you come home, visit our shop FrenchGardenHouse.

6 Responses to Weekly Favorites: French Globe de Mariée

  1. Thank you so much for such a lovely post, it’s fun to learn more about these. I have seen these from time to time and I am always amazed by their beauty.

  2. Thank you for sharing your stunning treasures, they are so beautiful. I have several chairs, domes and crowns as well. Your story is very interesting and informative. Kathleen

  3. Thankyou for this lovely sentiment of days gone by. I love the whole idea and had never heard of it beore. What a family treasure this would be.

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