An interview with the owner of The Queen’s 1953 Coronation robes replica

News: 25 May 2022

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From Friday 27th May until 5th June, we will be displaying a stunning replica of Her Majesty The Queen’s 1953 Coronation robes as part of our Jubilee celebrations.

Molly Ives (1918 – 2013) from Thetford, made the dress, crown and 36-inch train that was completed in 1996. The dress took 800 hours to create with 4,200 beads handstitched onto it, while the crown has 2,922 pearl beads and 1,200 gold beads. The purple velvet 36-inch train took Molly 250 hours to complete and has gold thread hand embroidered onto it. In total, the robes took 1,150 hours to complete over an entire year.

Throughout her life, Molly made many period costumes for dolls and her first-period doll was Queen Elizabeth I. Ladies clothing inspired Molly the most as her speciality was in fine embroidery and detailed embellishments, however, she later designed and made replica clothes for Henry VIII which led to further male costumes.

Each doll takes weeks to complete with research and shopping for materials, in addition to actually making the clothes. However, this fantastic replica of The Queen most definitely took the longest!

None of Molly’s amazing replica outfits has ever been on show until now. Molly’s son, Michael Ives, has kindly allowed us to display his mother’s great work for The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations.

We caught up with Michael to ask him some questions about the dress, and why he chose Chantry Place to display it.

How do you think your mum would feel about it being on public display?

Amazed and very proud.

What made you choose Chantry Place as the place to display the doll?

I saw the Chantry Place Jubilee celebrations mentioned in the EDP and thought it would be a marvellous opportunity to have the doll on display. I thought it would be looked after and safe there.

Why has it never been on display before?

It has been in a cupboard since being made and taken out on occasion to show family and friends. It has never left the house but now seemed the right time providing we found a good venue.

What’s your favourite part of the replica?

I don’t have a favourite part, I think every item is truly amazing!

What made you want to display it?

To show off my mum’s talent.

For more information on the activities taking place as part of our Jubilee celebrations, please visit: