27 September 2013

Flashback Friday: Guillaume and Stéphanie's Wedding

That's right, it's me, back again with another Friday video post. I'm determined that you shall not have a productive Friday! You will be lured into my world of YouTube-induced procrastination. Step into my web...

Earlier this week, half of you people were all, "Oh no, Stéphanie and Claire's wedding gowns were too similar! Two gorgeous wedding gowns, the horror!" (I kid because I love.) I had no choice but to rewatch Stéphanie's wedding, you see. And now I think you should too; after all, it is nearly their one year anniversary, and a tribute is in order. So here we go, the October 2012 religious wedding of the Hereditary Grand Duke of Luxembourg and Countess Stéphanie de Lannoy:
Video: This is a playlist and should take you directly from one part to the next - you can also click on the video title and go to YouTube instead.

26 September 2013

Tiara Thursday: The Diamond Vine Leaves Tiara

The Diamond Vine Leaves Tiara
I usually just refer to today’s tiara as the larger Luxembourg floral tiara because it is indeed the larger of the two all diamond floral motif tiaras currently in use by the ladies of the grand ducal family – and from a distance, the size is the easiest way to tell the two apart (here’s the smaller one). A closer look will show you, though, that instead of flowers, the larger one features leaves and curly little vine pieces, with additional single diamonds acting as berries. The motif actually reminds me of the Danish Ruby Parure Tiara, with its wreath of leaves and berries.
Grand Duchess Maria Teresa
But whatever you call it, the details are the same: it is made of white diamonds set in silver and yellow gold, it dates from the mid-19th century, and it is convertible to brooch pieces or necklace components when removed from its frame. Though not particularly tall, it is long and wraps generously around the head.
Video: In action on Princess Stéphanie at her pre-wedding dinner. She appears at the end, about 5:58.
The tiara’s seen plenty of use on the head of Grand Duchess Maria Teresa, the wife of the current Grand Duke of Luxembourg, Henri. It has been in the family a lot longer, though (it’s actually part of their family foundation, ensuring it stays in the collection from generation to generation). It wasn’t popular with Henri’s mother, Grand Duchess Joséphine-Charlotte (according to the court, she only wore it once), and it wasn’t popular with Henri’s grandmother, Grand Duchess Charlotte, either (apparently she never wore it). But it was used by all four of Charlotte’s daughters on their wedding days – Luxarazzi has them all lined up for you, click here.
Princess Stéphanie, Princess Claire, and another close up look
The wedding tradition has been revived with Henri and Maria Teresa’s daughters-in-law: the Hereditary Grand Duchess wore her own family’s tiara for her wedding day, but she wore the Vine Leaves Tiara for her pre-wedding dinner, and of course Princess Claire recently wore the tiara for her wedding day (oh, and for an even longer glimpse of the tiara in action, RTL has more than an hour long video of the wedding, click here - you're definitely going to want to carve out some time for that). We have yet to see the tiara on Princess Tessy, their other daughter-in-law, or on their daughter Princess Alexandra, so it will be interesting to see if the tradition lives on.

How do you think this one works as a wedding tiara?

Photos: AOP/Cour grand-ducale/Christian Aschman/Getty Images

25 September 2013

Weekly Royal Fashion Awards: September 15-21, Plus a Tiara Watch!

Best in Visits
Queen Máxima and Princess Letizia

Video: Felipe and Letizia meet their Dutch visitors at the airport
Willem-Alexander and Máxima got back to their one day visits to fellow European monarchs this past week with a quick stop in Spain to see the King and Queen. So many things to love just in this video: the warm greetings, the best thing Letizia wore all week, Máxima's abundant use of aquamarines, and her excellent response to the Spanish monarchy's anti-hat and currently anti-bling culture.
That would be a jeweled butterfly in the hair, of course. Attagirl!

Most Curiously Hatted
Queen Mathilde
Continuing visits across the country with King Philippe
Mathilde had other events this week (she was in New York, and I think we'll cover that when we cover the rest of the people in NYC next week), but this one sort of wiped them all out. There are outfits that you can casually throw a hat on...and then there are outfits that you can not.

Second Most Curiously Hatted
Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit
Visiting Vest-Agder
I don't know what exactly is going on here, but these two together without context humors me. If I hadn't seen them next to each other on video (click here!), I might think someone had Photoshopped this up: one Arctic survivor bundled up for life and one dude in a suit, just out for a stroll.

Best in Family Events
The Swedish Royal Family
King Carl Gustaf, Queen Silvia, Crown Princess Victoria, Prince Daniel, Prince Carl Philip, Chris O'Neill, and Princess Madeleine attend a reception celebrating the King's 40th Jubilee
First, the Jubilee festivities continued with a reception, where Victoria's simple dress was the perfect day dress to pair with her father's order, and a much less distracting choice than Silvia's Easter egg suit...
The Opening of Parliament and the evening performance (King and Queen not pictured)
...and then it was time for the annual opening of Parliament. The black and white on the ladies is the standard dress code, and a throwback to the court dress of earlier days, and Madeleine's winning it (during the day at least).

Best in Variety
Crown Princess Mary
Mary at an awards ceremony, and during the state visit from Vietnam (with her Erdem dress)
Mary had a busy week, more events than this, and she had some interesting designers too. A blue Gucci number - not unlike the Gucci worn by Máxima earlier this year, sans the Bea sleeves - and Erdem! Count that as another royal Erdem that I actually like. I like that blue coat too, and as a bonus it was worn for a state visit, and you know what that means...

Tiara Watch!
Reason #597 why fall is awesome: we usually get a couple state visits out of it, and state visits = tiaras. Tiaras in all their sparkly action, no less:

Video: State banquet for the President of Vietnam
Queen Margrethe is wearing the Baden Palmette Tiara; Mary has on her wedding tiara; Marie is wearing her regular floral tiara; and Benedikte is also in her floral tiara. A regular diamond party! And thank heavens for the tiaras, because I'm not wild about the gowns. Marie's is lovely, but that waist ornamentation has no business being cluttered by a sash and a star. And Mary looks like she's reusing the skirt from one of my favorite New Year's Court outfits, and yet I still don't love it. Hmm...

Who was your best dressed last week?

Photos: IBL/Belga/NRK/Expressen/BestImage/Abaca/Kongehuset

23 September 2013

Royal Fashion Awards: Prince Félix and Princess Claire’s Wedding

After marrying in a civil ceremony in Germany earlier in the week, Prince Félix of Luxembourg and the new Princess Claire headed to Basilique Sainte-Marie-Madeleine in Saint-Maximin-la-Sainte-Baume in the south of France (most hyphenated location ever? Discuss) for their religious wedding this weekend. It was a festival of hats, lace, and Saab – and no, we’re not talking about cars.

The Bride and Groom
Like the Hereditary Grand Duchess before her, Claire decided to marry in a custom gown from Elie Saab. The off white dress is a confection of floral Chantilly lace embroidery with accents of crystals, pearls, and silver thread. It features long sleeves, a high neckline with a dip in the back, and a three meter train. For his part, the groom sported a morning suit with a blue tie. Pinned on his lapel is the miniature of the Order of the Gold Lion of the House of Nassau.
But back to the bride, who accessorized with a veil of ivory silk tulle decorated with more floral motifs and anchored by the larger of the diamond floral motif tiaras currently worn by the ladies of the grand ducal family. The tiara has a leafy vine motif with berries, and dates from the mid-19th century. We see it most often on the Grand Duchess, but it has been used as a wedding tiara in the past. (And I do suppose we’ll have to elaborate come Thursday.) Claire’s diamond earrings have plenty of wedding tradition as well, having been worn by the Grand Duchess and the Hereditary Grand Duchess on their respective wedding days. The bride also wore matching shoes with a rounded toe and ankle strap.
Dutch program Blauw Bloed has some nice footage; click above and zoom ahead to 22:00 and about 32:20 for the wedding.
I freely confess my deep weakness for Elie Saab, and this is no exception. In any other venue, this would be too much, but for a royal wedding I do love it – I mean, if you can’t look like a fairy godmother whipped you up something to wear then, when can you? (Speaking of which…anyone else think this kinda looks like the wedding gown Nanny McPhee conjures up at the end of the first movie? Anyone? Too much cheese? Okay, I’ll stop.)

The Guests
This was not a state occasion like some royal weddings we’ve seen, so the guests were friends and family and not so much designated representatives of royal houses. These are just a few (Luxarazzi has plenty more, including a guest list). And if there was any singular unifying theme, among the ladies at least, it would have to be this: HATS.

Best in Family
Princess Tessy
Left to right: the Grand Duchess, the Hereditary Grand Duchess, Princess Tessy, Princess Alexandra
Yet again, Maria Teresa has gone with a lot of look, as shiny as can be – but, and here’s a shocker, it’s not Natan this time, it’s Armani. Stéphanie went for lace from Stéphanie Le Grelle (are those froofy sleeves becoming a thing? Let’s not let them become a thing) and Tessy went with a sleeker look from Calvin Klein. Alexandra was one of the female witnesses, and they were all dressed alike in gowns from Tadashi Shoji (though you would be forgiven if you mistook it for Jenny Packham, as previously seen on Princess Alexandra of Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg and the Duchess of Cambridge, because yeah, that’s basically the same gown). I’m not that in love with any of this, so I’ll pick Tessy. When in doubt, go with purple.

Best in Other Hats
Beatrice Borromeo
L to R: Archduchess Marie-Astrid of Austria and Princess Margaretha of Liechtenstein (Grand Duke Henri's sisters), Beatrice Borromeo (longtime girlfriend of Pierre Casiraghi), Princess Isabelle of Liechtenstein, Countess Diane of Nassau and Princess Sibilla of Luxembourg (both sisters-in-law of Grand Duke Henri)
The groom’s aunts brought plenty of interesting millinery, everything from the rather tame lily pad of Marie-Astrid and the rather elegant big brims of Sibilla and Diane to the craft bin leftovers of Margaretha. Then we have Isabelle, not a normal featured player here, but notable as she is also prepared for her next trip the Kentucky Derby. And then there’s Beatrice. I have so many questions about this. Question 1: What sort of sorcery is this? What happens if she bumps into a doorway? If someone cuts her off in the cake line, can she snap off a piece and take revenge? For the cake defense mechanism alone, she takes the prize.

Best in Family Gents
Grand Duke Henri
L to R: Prince Sébastien, the Grand Duke, the Hereditary Grand Duke, Prince Louis
The man matched his tie to his wife’s outfit. A fuchsia tie, just for her. Come on.

What did you think of the bridal gown? Who was your best dressed guest?

Photos: Cour grand-ducale/Guy Wolff/Getty Images/DutchPhotoPress/PPE/BestImage

20 September 2013

Flashback Friday: Andrew and Sarah's Wedding

The religious marriage of the second son of the Grand Duke and Grand Duchess of Luxembourg is this weekend (Félix and Claire already tied the civil knot earlier this week). Seems as good of an excuse as any to rewatch another second son's wedding, right? Sure, why not. Fridays weren't made for productivity anyway. (As for the Luxembourg wedding - a much lower key affair than the one we're seeing today - we'll have a look next week.)

It's 1986, it's Westminster Abbey, and it's the wedding of Prince Andrew, Duke of York and second son of Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh, to Miss Sarah Ferguson. Enjoy!

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

Part 5

Part 6

Part 7

Part 8

Part 9

19 September 2013

Tiara Thursday: Farah's Seven Emerald Tiara

Farah's Seven Emerald Tiara
This unique emerald tiara was made by Harry Winston in 1958 in advance of the marriage of the Shah of Iran and Farah Diba. Much like the Noor-ol-Ain Tiara, which was made in the same time frame for the same purpose, it includes a mix of diamond colors and incorporates old stones from the Iranian crown collection. The heart-shape pointed base is made of a row of platinum-set baguette white diamonds which sit underneath a double row of pink, yellow, and white diamonds. The brilliants are thought to be from the 19th century and Indian in origin; the largest two are 15 carats apiece. The top is set with seven large oval and round cabochon emeralds which are probably from South America and were likely cut before 1738 (when Nadir Shah invaded India). The emeralds range in size from 10 carats each (for the two smallest) to 65 carats (for the large central stone), and are framed in diamonds thought to be from South Africa.
Empress Farah
It's often said to have been Empress Farah's favorite tiara, and she certainly wore it for many important events. It paired particularly well with the large and fashionable tiara hairstyles she was prone to - in fact, a mega updo seems something of a requirement for a tiara like this, with a base constantly threatening to poke you in the head.

Video: In action, towards the end
The tiara may have been a signature piece for the Empress, but it belonged to the crown jewel collection and as such did not come with her when the imperial family fled the country in 1979. In 1937, during the reign of Mohammed Reza Pahlavi's father, ownership of the important historical jewels was given over to the state to back the country's monetary system, a purpose they still serve (how's that for collateral, eh?). While they are no longer worn, the jewels are safe and sound and available for public viewing at the Treasury of National Jewels in the Central Bank of the Islamic Republic of Iran in Tehran.

What do you make of this emerald tiara?

Photos: Harry Winston/Point de Vue

18 September 2013

Royal Fashion Awards: Prinsjesdag 2013

Prinsjesdag made me a little sad yesterday, guys. We're not only missing Queen Princess Beatrix from the festivities now, but Princess Margriet and her husband Pieter van Vollenhoven too. Such a small group, only the King, Queen, Prince Constantijn, and Princess Laurentien. Oh well. The pomp remains, and so do our (pared-down) awards.

Video: Prinsjesdag in action

Most Metallic
Queen Máxima
It was Jan Taminiau once again for Máxima, a gold frock with a studded diamond design that grew in size as her dress neared the floor. I'm all for sparkle and I'm all for covering oneself in gold, but I also think this looks like super fancy modern chainmail. Like, swap the clutch for a sword and she'd really be in business.

Most in Need of a Uniform
King Willem-Alexander
Video: The speech
Yes, I know. There are reasons the King has abandoned his military uniform-wearing ways. But I have reserved the right to be fully superficial in this space, and so I say: Booooo! Bring it back! Prince Constantijn was in morning dress too, as he always is, but I missed the presence of at least one royal gent with uniform and sash blazing. Nevertheless, he did do well with the speech and all. I mean, I don't speak the language or anything, but he's got a good voice, no? Kingly.

Most Evening
Princess Laurentien
Some of you remarked on our recent Prinsjesdag flashback that you felt the dresses were a little too obviously evening gowns with hats on top, and so they usually are - after all, we are out of the court dress habit these days. It usually doesn't bother me (why not get a gown that you can also wear later on?), but this one is a little too obviously evening for me. Maybe that's because we've already seen it in evening mode, during the inauguration festivities.

Who was your Prinsjesdag favorite?

Photos: Pool/Getty Images/ANP/NOS

Random Royal Wedding Appreciation: Prince Félix and Claire Get Hitched

It's finally time for the wedding festivities for Prince Félix of Luxembourg and Claire Lademacher! The pair were married in a small civil ceremony yesterday at Villa Rothschild Kempinski in Königstein im Taunus, in Claire's home country of Germany.
The bride chose Dutch designer Jan Taminiau, best known to us for his work with Queen Máxima (and who had quite a day yesterday, as Máxima also wore a Taminiau creation to Prinsjesdag). That came as a big surprise to me, but a surprise in a very good way, as I think this really works for the happy bride. I see a touch of his caped creation from the Dutch inauguration in the lift on the cap sleeves of Claire's peplum top, which is cinched with a belt and accentuated with a slim knee-length skirt below. Peplums can be a bit dodgy, but I think they work particularly well on the vertically blessed among us (you tall people), such as our newest princess here. The wool crepe outfit includes lace on the top, a detail which I'm finding lost in most of the images but must have added some nice texture in person. She carried a white bouquet and accessorized with aquamarine earrings and nude shoes with bows. The groom stood out in an orange tie which pays tribute to his Nassau roots.

The rest of the immediate Luxembourg family was on hand: the Grand Duchess was in Natan (of course) which was sorta shiny (of course of course), the Hereditary Grand Duchess chose pink Prada with a tiered detail on the skirt, Princess Tessy wore a simple aqua-ish sleeveless dress from Lynn Adler, and Princess Alexandra donned a darker pink Prada with a stripe detail at the bottom. (Designer details via Luxarazzi, which will take care of all the Lux needs you never knew you had and which obviously has much, much more on this happy event.)

Video: Outside the wedding
And when all was said and done, they climbed into possibly the world's smallest motor vehicle and puttered off to live happily ever after. Or they will, eventually, but they're not done getting married yet: the religious ceremony is this weekend in France. It promises to be a bigger affair than this close family only civil wedding, but not the huge event we saw last year when the Hereditary Grand Duke married.

Photos: Cour grand-ducale/Guy Wolff/Getty Images

17 September 2013

Weekly Royal Fashion Awards: September 8-14

Best in Brights
Queen Máxima

Video: Máxima in Malaysia
This dress appeared to legitimately be an eye-searing shade of highlighter yellow in some of the pictures. Happily for her audience, it appears slightly more tame in action.

Best in Prints
Crown Prince Haakon's Jacket
Letizia holds an audience; Mathilde visits Wavre and later a museum; Mette-Marit, Ingrid Alexandra, and Haakon open an environment house; Mette-Marit in Paris
Well, I do prefer Mette-Marit's family appearance to her head-to-toe reptile situation, which looks all kinds of stiff. And while we're at it, we can't forget Crown Prince "Not Just Another Navy Suit" Haakon there. (We must also give a nod to another kind of print entirely: Crown Princess Mary in camouflage, training with the Home Guard, which would be such an automatic winner for me I dare say it's not fair competition.) 

Best in Sparkle
Duchess of Cambridge
Video: William and Kate attend the Tusk Conservation Awards
When in doubt, go with glitter, that's what I always say. 

Best in Statement Accessories
Crown Princess Mette-Marit
Máxima opens a museum; Mette-Marit in Paris
As relieved as I am that Máx has not busted out another of her bug jewels, I have to stick with Mette-Marit's shoes. They're not for everyone, but this Shoe Person loves 'em. I mean, not with this outfit, but just generally speaking. From the ankles down.

Who was your best dressed last week?

Psst: We'll have a glimpse at Prinsjesdag tomorrow.

Photos: Getty Images/Abaca/NTBScanpix/Kongehuset/Stella Pictures/ANP/Valentino

16 September 2013

Royal Fashion Awards: The Swedish Jubilee

Carl XVI Gustaf became king on September 15, 1973, on the death of his grandfather. And now, 40 years later, the royal family's been celebrating. The weekend may not have had the pomp of last year's British jubilee or the sparkle of last year's Danish jubilee, but it had dancing in the streets and Princess Estelle, so it's a fair competition.

Best in Exhibits
Princess Christina
Left to right: Princess Madeleine, Prince Carl Philip, Prince Daniel, Crown Princess Victoria, Queen Silvia, King Carl Gustaf, Princess Christina
The family all got together first for the opening of an exhibit on the King's reign. His sister Princess Christina did the actual opening, including what I gather was a lovely and touching speech. For that, and for her divinely simple black and white, she wins.

Best in Dinners
Princess Madeleine
Moving up on the fancy scale, there was a dinner and a concert, where the gents were dashing in black tie, Victoria carried on her aunt's black and white legacy, the Queen managed to sneak in some diamond love, and Madeleine glowed (this time, with husband Chris in tow). She wins on those mega green earrings alone.

Best in Te Deums
Queen Silvia
A Te Deum was held - because what's a big royal happening without one of those crazy happenings? - and sadly it was the cause of a few unfortunate shoe choices. By default, I think the Queen has to take this one. (You will note also that all are wearing their new Jubilee medals.)

Best in Te Deums - Guests in Hats Division
Queen Sonja
L to R: Queen Margrethe and Prince Henrik of Denmark, Queen Sonja and King Harald of Norway, Princess Christina and her husband Tord Magnuson
The King's sisters were present, and Princess Christina made up for her sisters' bare heads by sporting...I don't know, but I think you could wash a car with it. Fellow Scandinavian heads of state were also in the house, and I've decided that Queen Margrethe is determined for that outfit to witness all the important royal happenings in this decade (it's already seen her own 70th birthday, the christening of her grand twins, and William and Kate's wedding - and more). That leaves us with Queen Sonja, in a delightfully understated turn.

Best in Parties
These Things That Happened
Stockholm partied after all that, and the awwws came out to play. The King and Queen got all lovey-dovey and danced (you need to see that on video, do you not? You do, so click here). And then my favorite little Swedish bucket of sass made an appearance, dancing on tables, wearing her own wee Jubilee medal (it's under her coat), and hanging out with uncle Carl Philip plus aunt Madeleine's dog, Zorro. A baby, a prince, and a dog: if you can't find something to cheer your Monday in that mix...well, you should get that checked. (Do you need to see this one in action too? I THINK YOU DO. Click here for a whole clip o' Estelle goodness.) And a special nod overall to Prince Daniel, who was celebrating his 40th birthday - yes, he was born on the very same day his future father-in-law took the throne, how's that for a coincidence? (And he shares his birthday with both Princess Letizia and Prince Harry, oddly enough.)

Which outfit is your favorite?

Photos: Getty Images/Kungahuset/Expressen/Scanpix

13 September 2013

Flashback Friday: Máxima at Prinsjesdag

It's nearly time for one of my favorite annual royal events: Prinsjesdag! The Dutch sovereign gives the Speech from the Throne in front of a joint session of parliament, but more importantly (for us in our frivolous mode, at least) there is the fashion. Prinsjesdag still follows an old dress code that used to be quite popular at royal events: long day dresses with orders and hats for the ladies, plus uniform or morning dress for the gents. Today, a look at what Máxima wore to the event during her princess years, with her years as Queen Máx still to come.

The ubiquitous Belgian house of Natan is very popular, as it always is, but since Prinsjesdag often requires some bespoke work, I think the results are greatly improved. Recent years have seen the creeping in of Dutch design, including a one-off appearance in purple Herbert Rouwers (not a typical choice of designer for her) and a run of Jan Taminiau. There's even a shout out to Máxima's home country in the form of 2004's outfit by Argentine designer Benito Fernandez.
The brighter colors draw me in (2007, you look so sadly tame and out of place) - 2003's maternity turn will always be a favorite - but still 2006's crisp white jacket and full black skirt are winning everything here for me. A dress code like this means a lot of look no matter what you throw on, so clean lines make such a world of difference and their absence sticks out in other years (2008, hello - how much do I want to love the purple year, and yet I can't!).

Which outfit is your favorite?

Photos: ANP/Belga/Getty Images/DutchPhotoPress/PPE/Reuters

12 September 2013

Tiara Thursday: The Chaumet Bourbon-Parma Tiara

The Chaumet Bourbon-Parma Tiara
This is one of those rare tiaras that has managed to become fairly well known despite the fact that it isn't owned by a reigning royal family, and wasn't ever really worn by a hugely famous royal. It does have royal roots, though, as it was initially a wedding gift for a royal marriage. The Belle Époque style tiara was made in 1919 by Joseph Chaumet and was bought by the Duchess of Doudeauville (some reports say it was the Duke). She gave it to her daughter, Hedwige de La Rochefoucauld (1896-1986), for her marriage to Prince Sixtus of Bourbon-Parma that same year. It has a base which alternates between sizes of diamond collets and a body of sprays of diamonds held by knife-edge platinum settings. The top has upright pear-shape diamonds and there are both round and pear-shape diamonds below.
The wedding of Sixtus and Hedwige (this tiara not included)
You might be tempted to relate the Bourbon-Parma name to the current crop of Bourbon-Parma relations that are still roaming around today's royal events, but Sixtus and his family were just one part of the enormous B-P family. Prince Sixtus was the son of Robert I, Duke of Parma and Maria Antonia of Portugal, the Duke's second wife. Robert fathered 24 children in his two marriages and his descendants include the Luxembourg royals (son Prince Félix of Bourbon-Parma married Grand Duchess Charlotte), the family of Empress Zita of Austria (who was another of Robert's children), the children of Princess Irene of the Netherlands (whose late husband was Carlos Hugo, Duke of Parma and grandson of Robert), and more.
Modeled by Sophie Marceau (left) and Stella Tennant (right)
This tiara did not stay in that huge family, though. It was ultimately reacquired by Chaumet, and if you were previously familiar with this tiara, your connection is likely thanks to the Chaumet ownership. It has appeared in ads, exhibitions, and on film: Valérie Lemercier wore it in Palais Royal! and a copy appeared on the head of Anne Hathaway in the Princess Diaries films.
Valérie Lemercier (left) and Anne Hathaway (right)
It's a good tiara to use for promotion, since the skill required to put this one together is evident. I think it looks best when worn, when the connections between the diamonds disappear and it takes on a delicate water drop look.

How do you rate this tiara?

Photos: Chaumet/Disney

11 September 2013

Wedding Wednesday: September Brides

September weddings include some of those couples we see pop up at big European royal events, plus some prep for the next wedding on the horizon:

Spetember 8 & 24, 1994
And this month we'll add another Luxembourg royal wedding to the roster (Félix and Claire!). 

Crown Prince Al-Muhtadee Billah of Brunei and Sarah Salleh
September 9, 2004
Days of glittering ceremonies were required to wed the Crown Prince to his bride, who was just 17 years old.

Lord Frederick Windsor and Sophie Winkleman
September 12, 2009
New parents to baby Maud, these two.

Prince Aimone of Savoy and Princess Olga of Greece
September 16 & 27, 2008
If you're looking for a unique royal wedding gown, allow me to present this Prada creation.

September 18, 1964
A personal fave! So simple, so pretty.

Crown Prince Alexander II of Serbia and Katherine Batis
September 20 & 21, 1985
A second marriage for both.

Crown Princess Margarita of Romania and Radu Duda
September 21, 1996
She borrowed the Cartier Essex Tiara for her wedding day, a good switch from her standard Greek Key Tiara, I think.

Grand Duchess Maria Vladimirovna of Russia and Prince Franz Wilhelm of Prussia
September 22, 1976
It's your favorite kokoshnik-wearing grande dame, prone to appearing at extended royal events, and her former husband.

Princess Astrid of Belgium and Archduke Lorenz of Austria-Este
September 22, 1984
Attack of the Giant Sleeves.

Prince Emanuele Filiberto of Savoy and Clotilde Courau
September 25, 2003
I do so love a pink tiara. The world needs more pink tiaras.

September 29, 2006
And another one out of Luxembourg to round us out!

Who's your favorite September bride?

Photos: Corbis/Brunei Resources/Getty Images/dpa

10 September 2013

Weekly Royal Fashion Awards: August 27-September 7, Plus Your Diamond Winners!

Hello again, lovelies. It's that glorious time of year when the deadly slow month of August is over and our royals have returned to the fashion playing field! Rejoice. A hodgepodge of some of what we've missed:

Best in Brights
Princess Letizia
Mary and Victoria at separate awards ceremonies; Letizia with Felipe in Argentina for the IOC meeting; Mathilde and Philippe in Leuven and at the Hanswijk Cavalcade; Máxima on an engagement with Willem-Alexander and at a university
Yes, I think you truly know summer is over when the Natan twins return to greet you with their dueling Slimer green ensembles. Elsewhere, Victoria keeps trying with that statement necklace but isn't quite there yet, and Letizia made a valiant attempt to win the 2020 Olympics for Madrid by the sheer power of lookin' good - didn't work for her (Tokyo won the Games), but it works for me.

Best in Casual
The Duchess of Cambridge
Video: Kate and William on an engagement in Anglesey
Not so much a sartorial thing, but here you go anyway. 

Best in Black and White
Crown Princess Mary
Mette-Marit opening a sculpture park; Mary in Morocco; Letizia in Argentina
Mary's been busy, squeezing another trip in, but I can't concentrate on anything but this skirt right here. I need it, you see. NEED. Alas, it isn't a new one, but an older model from By Malene Birger. Sigh. Mette-Marit looked ab fab, but not even the power of a well placed puppy can distract me.

And an Honorable Mention to...
Princess Madeleine
At a memorial service for Princess Lilian
Jumpy claps to Madeleine, who has recently announced that she and her new husband are expecting a baby! Maternity wear ahoy.

Who's been your best dressed lately?

And now for the winners of your recent double pick for your ultimate tiara collection...

Inevitable that these would make the cut at some point, really. As for your runners up, let's have a moment of silence for Poor Polty - it took the #2 spot in both categories, but even combining its votes, it wouldn't have pulled out a win. The remainder were all over the place.

Here's the full thing so far:
That's the end of the August voting extravaganza (as stated previously, just something to do while we're summer bored). The next one will be at the end of September.

Photos: Abaca/Getty Images/Belga/DutchPhotoPress/NTBScanpix/BilledBladet-Kongehuset/Stella Pictures

04 September 2013

Programming Note

As noted yesterday, the blog is taking the rest of the week off - we will return on Tuesday!

03 September 2013

Royal Fashion Awards: A Weekend Wedding Frenzy

While some of us were enjoying a long holiday weekend, some of our royal people here were busy getting married by the dozens. Well, maybe not dozens, but there were still multiple royal/royal-adjacent/princely/whatever weddings this past weekend. Let's get to work:

Best in True to Form
Tatiana Santo Domingo
Andrea Casiraghi, oldest child of Princess Caroline, tied the knot with his longtime love (and the mother of his son), Tatiana, in a civil ceremony in Monaco (reports say a religious wedding is scheduled for Gstaad in January). And if you follow these two at all, you probably got exactly what you expected: an extremely private affair with a boho bride in Missoni. Yes, leave it to Tatiana to go for a dress with a description that includes the words "macramé effect" and "raffia"...and to make that look totally natural while strolling down the grandest of palace staircases. Comfortable and happy, two things every bride wants to be, right?

Video: Albert and Charlene at the evening party
They had a party in the evening, too. The video above gives you a glimpse of Albert and Charlene's looks (spoiler alert: there does not appear to be anything VERY REVEALING about that dress, no matter what the video is called), and you can see Tatiana's evening look here (Missoni, again - she's close with the family, and they were in attendance).

Best in Fabric
Kendra Spears
This groom is Prince Rahim Aga Khan, and he is the eldest son of the Aga Khan. This bride - who is now known as Princess Salwa - is an American and a model, because obviously, and I find myself moved to upholster everything I own in the fabric she's rocking there. (Which is a compliment. It's so deliciously rich.)

Best in Dress
Vicky Andrén
From the Swedish side, Princess Christina's son Gustaf Magnuson married Vicky Andrén (also a model, go figure). Lars Wallin did the wedding gown and oh - yes - we have a winner, folks. Predictable old me loves this one to bits. I'm also giving this wedding the Best Dressed Guests award, particularly for Victoria in her repeated shiny Jenny Packham and Sofia Hellqvist for her dreamy mauve (click here for the guests and more from the wedding).

But wait! There's more! Prince Muhammad Ali of Egypt and Princess Noal Zaher of Afghanistan also got married, last Friday in Istanbul. I haven't seen quite as much about this wedding, but this page has some glimpses of another sparkly gown.

And now that we have our important wedding business out of the way, we're taking a short break! The blog will return next week.

Photos: Palais Princier/Getty Images/The Ismaili/Scanpix