Happy Is the Bride…Perhaps – Vintage Photos of Unhappy Brides

Most modern brides smile happily in their wedding portraits.  Many brides of yesteryear do, too.  However, while trolling through boxes of old photos at flea markets, I’ve discovered that a fair number of brides from the past look very serious, if not downright miserable, when posing next to their grooms.  Here are some examples from my collection.

Website-Bride1The corners of the groom’s mouth are slightly upturned.  Not so the bride’s.

Website-Bride2She looks like she might still be a teenager.  He looks nearly old enough to be her father.  The facial expression and body language speak volumes.

Website-Bride3No one looks particularly happy here.  The flowers are quite beautiful, though.

Website-Bride4Someone must have made a pass at a girl who wore glasses but she doesn’t seem happy about it.

Website-Bride5Both bride and groom look desperately like they want the photo session to end.

Website-Bride6Hopefully the photographer did not tell the bride to think of her husband-to-be as he snapped the photo.

website-Bride7This petite bride seems to be pondering how she’s going to tell her lanky groom to find another hair stylist.

website-Bride9Stiff and formal but certainly not ecstatically happy.

website-Bride8Standing next to his beautiful bride, the groom appears to stoically accept his fate.

Of course, it’s natural for brides and grooms to be nervous and apprehensive on their wedding day.  Most likely, they are dressed in the most expensive clothes they will ever wear with dozens upon dozens of family members and friends looking on.  It’s an occasion that calls for a certain amount of solemnity and gravity.  No one knows, at this point, what the future holds.

But what about the couples who are celebrating their golden anniversary?  Surely fifty years of working together as a team leads to happiness and gratitude…doesn’t it?

website-Bride9AThis couple looks slightly happy – or at least bemused – about the fuss generated by their golden anniversary.

website-Bride9BIn this case, the wife has seemingly enjoyed those five decades of marriage, but the husband is clearly worn out.

website-Bride9CIt doesn’t get much happier than this.  Could they be any further apart?

This entry was posted in 1800's, 1900's, Americana, Carol, Ephemera, Photography. Bookmark the permalink.

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