29 July 1981. The world holds its breath as Lady Diana Spencer emerges from the carriage, setting her stunning fairy-tale like dress on display. In front of a global audience of no less than 750 million, the young albeit stunning lady clutched to her father’s arm as she regally glided down the aisle and towards her awaiting Prince. A few moments lady, she became officially known as Diana, Princess of Wales.
Indeed, the much-anticipated 1981 Royal Union caused a media frenzy and sparked a new international interest in celebrity weddings. While Charles and Diana’s marriage was no doubt one of the most sensational and memorable, the hype surrounding celebrity unions historically started with the wedding of Queen Victoria to Prince Albert back in 1840. Wearing a pair of white satin shoes and heavy silk satin frock, the young Queen most certainly ignited the tradition of wearing white for your wedding. Indeed, white being the official color of morning at that time, Royal brides used to wear grey, blue or even black wedding dresses to get married.
Of course, the hype surrounding Royal weddings only grew stronger with each passing decade. After Princess Diana’s wedding in 1981, the world’s attention was once again focused on the British Monarchy as the feisty, exuberant Sarah Ferguson married Royal Prince Andrew of Wales. However, no crowd could ever compare to the more than three billion of people who tuned in- both on television and online- for Prince William and Kate Middleton’s celebrity wedding in April 2011. Young, fresh and vibrant, the newly-wed couple certainly did opt for a lavish celebration that included two stunning white frocks- one for the wedding and one for the reception- two wedding cakes, countless flowers, sparkling jewels and a wild after-wedding celebration that went well into the night.
Of course, other non-British royal weddings did manage to captivate the hearts of people from all over the world. Who can forget the sweet, captivating aura that surrounded Grace Kelly as she clutched her flowers and strode into the church to become Princess Grace of Monaco? More recently, Princess Hafizah Sururul Bolkiah, daughter of the Sultan of Brunei, wore a sparkling lavender gown as she wed civil servant Pengiran Haji Muhammad Ruzaini in a lavish Arabian palace. And no later than December 2012, Princess Madeleine of Sweden donned a wedding gown by Valentino Haute Couture to marry financier Christopher O’Neil.
Indeed, royal weddings through the ages have managed to captivate hearts from all over the world. But, best of all, they can also serve as inspiration for newly engaged ladies who are planning on strutting down the aisle in the months to come.