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Million Dollar American Princesses:

How to Dress a Million Dollar American Princess

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How to Dress a Million Dollar American Princess

Short | 02:07

Imagine being in charge of finding original period-appropriate outfits for up to 70 television characters spanning 50 years of British and American history. Graham Hunter, costume designer for Million Dollar American Princesses, shows us how it's done.

More About This series

Join Elizabeth McGovern as she takes an in-depth look at the young American heiresses whose real life stories inspired the acclaimed TV drama "Downton Abbey." This series takes you from the late 1800s, when daughters of America's new industrial millionaires marry into the money-strapped British aristocracy, to the 20th century, when a new kind of American Princess wields power not through wealth, but through character, style, and wit. Through the decades, these women bring dramatic change to the European aristocracy and eventually the world.


  • Peggy Guggenheim
  • Wallis Simpson
  • Frances Work
  • Grace Kelly
  • Winnaretta Singer
  • Gloria Swanson
  • Elizabeth McGovern, Actor and Presenter
  • Consuelo Vanderbilt
  • Clara Ward
  • Kathleen
  • Mary Leiter
  • Jennie Jerome
  • Consuelo Yznaga
  • Sara Murphy
  • Peggy Guggenheim

    Peggy Guggenheim

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    Peggy Guggenheim (August 26, 1898--December 23, 1979) was one of the most iconic figures in the modern art world. Born to a wealthy New York Jewish family, Guggenheim's father, Benjamin, was one of the casualties of RMS Titanic, in 1912.

    With a reasonable inheritance in tow, Guggenheim relocated to Paris, married artist Laurence Vail, but then found herself divorced with two children, all by the age of 32.

    Inspired by art, Guggenheim opened her own gallery in London in 1938. But the outbreak of WWII forced her relocation back to France, where she proceeded to purchase important works of art by the likes of Constantin Brancusi and Henri Leger, for fear they'd end up with the Nazis. By the time Germany invaded Paris, she'd barely escaped, along with her children and the valuable pieces she owned.

    In New York City in 1942, Guggenheim opened a gallery called The Art of This Century, featuring a series of trailblazing exhibitions, blending old-world mastery with the work of up-and-coming young artists, such as Jackson Pollock, Willem de Koonig, Mark Rothko, and Ad Reinhardt. It was a monumental success and Peggy's importance as a collector and champion of the arts was cemented.

    In 1947, Peggy moved to Venice where she opened her Palazzo Venier dei Leoni, which is the most-visited museum in Venice to this day. She died in 1979, and her ashes were scattered there.

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