Friday, February 03, 2017

[259] MTSU, Oaklands escort viewers down the aisle with style in wedding dresses exhibit

MURFREESBORO — A country music legend’s wedding dress headlines this year’s display of gorgeous gowns in Murfreesboro.

The dress that Barbara Mandrell wore for her 1967 wedding ceremony highlights the sixth annual Wedding Dresses through the Decades exhibit, which is co-sponsored by the MTSU Department of Human Sciences Jan. 21 through March 5 at Oaklands Mansion, 900 N. Maney Ave. in Murfreesboro.

Mandrell’s mother made her wedding gown for her for less than $100. In addition, the exhibit will include the white naval uniform worn by Mandrell’s husband, producer Ken Dudney.

The silver lace overlay gown Mandrell wore at the 1992 renewal of her vows on her 25th anniversary also will be on display. It has a detachable white and silver tulle skirt along with a matching detachable five-foot train. It was created by Bob Mackie, who has designed fashions for Carol Burnett, Cher, Bette Midler, Tina Turner and Diana Ross, among others.

Students from the textiles, merchandising and design program at MTSU are instrumental in putting the exhibit together.

Oaklands Educational Director Mary Beth Nevills and her colleagues “have created a heartwarming, beautiful display that showcases the memories, details, styles and history of weddings through each dress,” said Deborah Belcher, chair of the MTSU Department of Human Sciences.

The exhibit will include dresses representing each decade from 1847 to the present and will be available for public viewing from Jan. 21 through March 5 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays and from 1 to 4 p.m. on Sundays. Admission is $10 per person.

For information on private after-hours viewings, group tour rates and special evening openings, contact Nevills at 615-893-0022 or email

To learn more about MTSU’s textiles, merchandising and design program, contact Belcher at 615-898-2302 or                                                         

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