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Friday, April 29, 2011

The Royal Wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton

After months of rumors and speculation, at last the world’s anticipation was met with the glorious site of the beautiful Catherine Middleton revealing her stunning bridal gown for the royal wedding today! In a traditional yet modern design created by Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen’s British fashion house, Kate elicited a collective gasp of delight as she alighted from the Rolls.

Kate’s gown is made from ivory and white satin gazar (a silk of loosely woven organza with a crisp finish), and the bodice and skirt feature hand-cut English lace and French Chantilly lace. The train measures nearly nine feet long. The lace appliqué for the bodice and skirt was hand-made by the Royal School of Needlework. Individual flowers were hand-cut from lace and hand-appliquéd onto ivory silk tulle to create the dress' unique design, which incorporates the rose, thistle, daffodil and shamrock. Kate is said to have worked very closely with Burton on the design of her wedding gown.

Some fashion experts are likening Kate’s gown to that worn by Grace Kelley during her wedding to Prince Ranier III of Monaco in 1956. The intricate lace appliqué bodice and sleeves of Kate’s gown mirror those on Princess Grace’s wedding dress. Additionally, both gowns share a high-waisted, full-skirted silhouette with a long, dramatic train and were worn with the sheerest of veils and a diamond tiara. By the way, the gorgeous tiara Kate wore was her “something borrowed”, on loan from the Queen herself. The Cartier halo tiara was a gift to the Queen on her 18th birthday.
Other notable highlights were Kate’s sweet hand-wired bouquet and the bridesmaid dress worn by Pippa Middleton, Kate’s sister and maid of honour. Kate’s bouquet was comprised of myrtle (the emblem of marriage; love), lily-of-the-valley (return of happiness), sweet William (gallantry) and hyacinth (constancy of love). The shield-shaped bouquet was designed by Shane Connolly and incorporated these flowers that carry significance for the Royal Family, the Middleton family and the Language of Flowers.

Pippa’s dress was also designed by Sarah Burton and was created to share details with Kate’s gown. The beautiful and elegant cowl-necked design was made of a heavy, ivory satin-based crepe. And while white may seem an unusual choice for a bridesmaid dress, it is actually very traditional, dating back to ancient Roman times, when bridesmaids wore white as well as the bride to confuse evil spirits who might intend to kidnap the bride. By all the ladies wearing white, the spirits could not be sure which lady the bride was.

As the meticulously timed event continued post-ceremony, the couple was whisked away to Buckingham Palace in a 1902 State Landau Carriage, which was built to be used at the Coronation of King Edward VII. Finally, the happy couple made their appearance on the balcony for the anxiously awaited kiss. Spectators were disappointed with the quick little peck Will and Kate exchanged, but were rewarded a few minutes later with a slightly longer kiss.

Congrats to the beautiful Duke and Duchess of Cambridge! Thank you for sharing your wonderful day with us all! We wish you a lifetime of love and happiness!

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