According to semi-canon sources, Elaena was not a great beauty like her sisters, and at age eleven was even described as a skinny little thing, though her beauty matured as she got older, and men said that she was more beautiful at age seventy than at age seventeen. Her eyes were a soft lilac, her mouth thin-lipped and often angry. Her hair was a platinum white with a bright golden streak down the middle, an unusual color even for the Targaryens. She wore it long, pulled back, and braided, and was always being told it was her crowning beauty. She did however cut it off, in retaliation against her brother Baelor, for imprisoning her in the Maidenvault. Afterwards she wore her hair in short for years. While appearance-wise she differed much from her sisters, character-wise, she had more than a little of her sister Daena's wilfullness, as she would prove when she grew older. She liked to dress in black as a child, simply because Daena also dressed in black.
Elaena was the third daughter and youngest child of King Aegon III Targaryen and Queen Daenaera of House Velaryon, and was born in 150 AC. She had two older brothers, Daeron and Baelor, and two older sisters, Daena and Rhaena. Elaena's most cherished possession was a dragon's egg whose stony shell showed the same colors as her hair.
Elaena and her sisters were the infamous sisters of King Baelor I who were housed in the Maidenvault. The three sisters were known aftwerwards as the "Three Maids in the Tower". Baelor imprisoned them in comfortable confinement so the sight of them would not tempt him or others in his court to mortal lusts. Elaena was locked away at age of eleven. Overall, she married three times in her life, twice at a king's behest and once for passion, and gave birth to seven children in total. She then declared that if seven was sufficient for the Gods, it would do for her as well.
Although she had three husbands during her lifetime, the great love of her life was her cousin, Alyn Velaryon, She wished to marry him, but he disappeared at sea. A year after his disappearance, she agreed to marry elsewhere. Elaena had birthed Alyn two bastard children, the twins Jon and Jeyne Waters.
She married her first husband, the wealthy but elderly Lord Ossifer Plumm, in 176 AC. He died on their wedding night (supposedly after seeing her naked), but Elaena had become pregnant and gave birth to a son called Viserys Plumm. There were those who were dubious of the boy's parentage, and had suspicions on who might actually be the boy's father. None dared speak their suspicions aloud however.
Elaena married her second husband, Ronnel Penrose, in the reign of King Daeron II Targaryen. He sat on the king's small council as Master of Coin, though it was widely known that she was the one performing the duties, as she was very shrewd and intelligent with money while Ronnel, while being a good man, was one without a great facility for numbers. King Daeron trusted her with many important matters of state and she grew influential. Elaena birthed Ronnel four children: Robin, Laena, Jocelyn, and Joy Penrose.
After Ronnel's death Elaena married once more. This marriage was for love and by her own choosing. With King Daeron II's blessing, Elaena was married to Ser Michael Manwoody, not long after Ronnel's death. Manwoody had come to court earlier, to attend the court of Queen Mariah Martell. Manwoody was send as an envoy to Braavos on several occasions, and there is record of correspondence between him and the key holders of the Iron Bank. These letters, while signed with Manwoody's name, and fixed with his own seal, appear to have been in the handwriting of Princess Elaena. Elaena said it wasn't Michael's intelligence or wit that had caused her to fall in love with him, but his love of music. When Manwoody died, Elaena therefor commanded his effigy to be carved with him holding a harp, instead of a sword and spurs of knighthood.