Monthly Archives: April 2011

THE WEDDING GOWN, SHADES OF ANOTHER REGAL PRINCESS, GRACE KELLY

For many, the most-anticipated part of the royal wedding was the bridal gown.  In this, Catherine Middleton did not disappoint.  She and her wedding dress designer, Sarah Burton, delivered in a spectacular and at the same time, understated manner.  The bridal gown was a triumph.   The gown:  elegant, refined and becoming, along with the delicate veil, had the effect not only of transforming Catherine Middleton into an ethereal bride, but into a royal princess as well.  Created from yards of ivory and white satin gazar, the bridal gown stood out with its fitted bodice covered in French Chantilly and English lace.  Elizabeth Emanuel, who along with her then husband, David, had designed the wedding gown of Lady Diana Spencer, is quoted as describing Catherine’s bridal gown as “breathtaking,” “stunning,” “beautiful,” “fabulous,” “a magnificent job.”

The Royal School of Needlework was involved in helping to create the gown, primarily the train and skirt.   Symbolically, the symbols of England (the rose), Scotland (the thistle), Wales (the daffodil), and Ireland (the shamrock), were incorporated into the gown.  Catherine’s gown was highly reminiscent of that most iconic of brides, the American actress Grace Kelly, who married Prince Rainier of Monaco in 1956.  Like Grace, Catherine looked exceptionally poised and dignified.   Both famous brides, who were born commoners, stood out on their wedding day for the graceful manner of their bearing and regal carriage.

The exquisite sheer veil was made of ivory silk tulle.  Catherine’s decision to wear her veil over her face added a subtle touch of modesty and elegance to the ensemble.  The bridal veil was held in place by the Queen’s halo tiara which had been created by the famed jewelers, Cartier, and given by King George VI to the Queen Mother.  More symbolism could be found in the bridal bouquet.  Largely composed of cream-colored flowers, the bride’s flowers contained stems from a myrtle bush grown from Queen Victoria’s bridal bouquet.  Also present were  lily-of-the-valley (for the return of happiness), sweet-William (for gallantry), hyacinth (for the constancy of love) and ivy (for fidelity).

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HERE COMES THE BRIDE, CATHERINE MIDDLETON, ON HER WEDDING DAY

In a ceremony infused with tradition, Miss Catherine Middleton was married to H.R.H. Prince William of Wales.   The moving hour-long ceremony held at Westminster Abbey was noted for its grandeur, dignity, and deeply Christian theme.  It also resonated with British history and pomp.  The excitement was palpable surrounding the wedding for days and had reached a crescendo once Catherine Middleton stepped into the car ready to whisk her to the Abbey.   Eyes strained to see what the bride was wearing and the crowds were not disappointed.  Catherine looked sublime in a beautiful gown of ivory and white satin with a lace bodice, her face covered by her veil.  The bride’s arrival at Westminster Abbey thrilled the waiting crowds.  As she emerged from the car, Catherine offered everyone a vision of elegance.  The commoner bride was set to become a royal in the most historic of churches.  A fairytale moment, the most anticipated event in decades, had arrived.

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WILLIAM & CATHERINE WILL BE THE DUKE & DUCHESS OF CAMBRIDGE

It was announced from Bucking Palace today that: “The Queen has today been pleased to confer a Dukedom on Prince William of Wales.  “His titles will be Duke of Cambridge, Earl of Strathearn and Baron Carrickfergus.  Prince William thus becomes His Royal Highness The Duke of Cambridge and Miss Catherine Middleton on marriage will become Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cambridge.”  The titles Cambridge is for England, Strathearn for Scotland, Carrickfergus for Northern Ireland.  The last holder of the dukedom of Cambridge was Prince George, a grandson of King George III.  George, Duke of Cambridge, also married a commoner, Sarah Fairbrother.  Unlike Prince William, whose marriage to Catherine Middleton has the blessing of the queen and government, Prince George’s marriage did not enjoy the imprimatur of the monarch.   The dukedom of Cambridge was first granted in the mid-seventeenth century.

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ROYAL GLITTER: PRE-ROYAL WEDDING DINNER, LONDON MANDARIN ORIENT #2

Here’s part 2 of photographs from the pre-royal wedding dinner at London’s Mandarin Orient Hotel.  Pictured here are from left to right: Crown Prince Philippe of Belgium and his wife, Princess Mathilde;  Henri and Maria Teresa, the Grand Duke and Grand Duchess of Luxembourg;  Queen Margrethe II of Denmark; and Crown Prince Felipe, his wife, Letizia, and Felipe’s mother, Queen Sofia of Spain.

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ROYAL GLITTER: PRE-ROYAL WEDDING DINNER, LONDON MANDARIN ORIENT #1

London’s Mandarin Orient Hotel at Hyde Park was the venue for a glittering pre-wedding dinner.  Numerous royals were present at the dinner including the groom’s grandparents, the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh, the Prince of Wales, the Duchess of Cornwall, the Princess Royal, the Duke of York and his daughters, the Earl and Countess of Wessex, etc.  Also present from the European continent were the Queen of Denmark; Queen Sofia of Spain and her son and daughter-in-law, the Prince and Princess of the Asturias; the Grand Duke and Grand Duchess of Luxembourg, , Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden and her husband, Prince Daniel, Prince Philippe and Princess Mathilde of Belgium, etc.  Prince William and Catherine Middleton did not attend.  Catherine spent the night with her family at the Goring Hotel while Prince William spent the evening at Clarence House.

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THE BRIDE, CATHERINE MIDDLETON, WAVES TO CROWDS AT THE GORING

These are likely to be the last photos taken of Catherine Middleton before she marries Prince William.  Here’s Kate arriving with her sister, Pippa, and mother, Carole, back at the Goring Hotel after a final rehearsal at Westminster Abbey.   The bride-to-be looked happy and even relaxed.  She smiled broadly and waved enthusiastically to the large crowds that had gathered.

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ORDER OF SERVICE OF THE ROYAL WEDDING OF WILLIAM AND CATHERINE

The official program, including the Order of Service,  for the wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton has been released.  The official website of the royal wedding has stated that: “The Wedding Service follows  the Book of Common Prayer (Alternative Services: Series One).”   There is a message from the Prince and Miss Middleton in the program which reads as follows:  “We are both so delighted that you are able to join us in celebrating what we hope will be one of the happiest days of our lives.  The affection shown to us by so many people during our engagement has been incredibly moving, and has touched us both deeply.  We would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone most sincerely for their kindness.”  For more details, take a look at the following links:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1381426/Royal-Wedding-Order-Service-Princess-Diana-funeral-hymn-sung.html?ito=feeds-newsxml

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/royal-wedding/8479433/Royal-wedding-the-Order-of-Service-in-full.html

http://www.officialroyalwedding2011.org/blog/2011/April/28/Royal-Wedding-update–Official-programme–including-Order-of-Service–available-online

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