Luxembourg Royal Wedding, Ten Years On

Royal Hats  Ten years ago today saw the wedding of Prince Louis of Luxembourg and Tessy Antony.

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In September, 2005, the Grand Ducal Court made the surprise announcement that Prince Louis and his girlfriend, Tessy Antony, were expecting their first child. This news was completely unexpected not only because the relationship was unknown to the press, but because the couple were so young (19 and 20). After Prince Gabriel’s arrival in March 2006, news of the couple’s engagement followed five months later. Following precedent in the Grand Ducal family, Louis renounced rights to the throne not only for himself, but for his descendants. As such, when Louis and Tessy married, she did not become a princess- this combined with an already unusual situation and set the event as a much lower key, family affair.

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After a civil ceremony held at the Grand Ducal Palace, Louis and Tessy’s religious ceremony took place on September 29, 2006 in the northern Luxembourg town of Gilsdorf’s local parish church. Like most ‘normal’ brides, Tessy chose an off-the-rack dress, the “Jazmin” design by Spanish bridal manufacturer Pronovias.

Prince Louis and Tessy Antony, September 29, 2006 | Royal Hats


The dress featured a strapless bodice covered in beaded cutouts of lace. Tessy arrived at the church in opera length white gloves that were removed during the ceremony.

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In the front of the dropped waist skirt, an overlay of organza gathered in folded pleats to a cluster of silk roses and trailing rosettes on Tessy’s left hip. From the back, the ballgown shaped skirt attached to the bodice in large box pleats that fell beautifully into a folded train.

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Tessy’s embroidered tulle veil was anchored with a beaded headpiece, worn on the crown of her head.
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Prince Louis and Tessy Antony, September 29, 2006 | Royal Hats   Prince Louis and Tessy Antony, September 29, 2006 | Royal Hats

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There was some grumbling in royal circles at the time about Tessy not receiving a tiara to wear for her wedding. I sincerely do not believe this was a snub- since she did not become a princess upon her marriage, a tiara was simply not in order (Tessy was granted the styling of Princess of Luxembourg in 2009).
It seems to me that the ‘not becoming a princess’ reality was a gift for Tessy who thus, was free to wear whatever she wanted on her wedding day. My esteemed blogging colleague The Royal Order of Sartorial Splendor remarked about this dress, ” while I can’t say I’d give it a second glance on the rack myself, I’ve always liked it for one main reason: it seems like what she would have worn whether or not the man waiting at the end of the aisle was a prince.” I think that sums it up very well.
 Prince Louis and Tessy Antony, September 29, 2006 | Royal Hats
Jump over to this post to see the hats and headpieces worn by the Grand Ducal family to this event. What do you think of this non royal headpiece for this non royal bride?
Photos from Getty as indicated; EPA; EPA; Alain Benaious via Getty; EPA

Greek Royal Wedding 20 Years On: Royal Guests

The wedding of a crown prince of any nation is usually cause for a major royal celebration. While Crown Prince Pavlos of Greece, Prince of Denmark did not marry in either of the nations where he holds princely title, his wedding to Marie-Chantal Miller on July 1, 1995 was a grand event nonetheless.

Along with the queens on the groom’s side of the family (Queen Anne-Marie, Queen Margrethe and Queen Sofia), Queen Elizabeth, Queen Silvia of Sweden, Queen Noor of Jordan and Grand Duchess Josephine of Luxembourg all attended this event. Queen Elizabeth wore a very pretty lavender hat with pleated straw crown while Queen Silvia wore a pink picture hat with white pleated crin brim. Grand Duchess Josephine topped her graphic black and white striped suit with a white straw hat with gently curved brim.

Queen Noor wore a white straw hat in the shape of an oversize cloche. The bell brim was further enlarged by a huge bow at the back of the hat. Of all the hats worn at this wedding, I think think this one is most ‘stuck’ in the millinery fashion of the time.Queen Noor, July 1, 1995 | Royal HatsPrincess Maria Teresa, Hereditary Grand Duchess of Luxembourg (as she was known then) wore a beige silk headband with bow at the side while Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden, who was still a teenager, wore a large white hat with squared crown and wide upturned stripe of black straw around the brim.
Hereditary Grand Duchess Maria Teresa, July 1, 1995 | Royal Hats Crown Princess Victoria, July 1, 1995 | Royal Hats
Princess Alexandra of Kent wore a  pale green hat with tall crown trimmed with a mass of green feathers around the base of the crown. It is a style of hat we see on Alexandra still today and one that is just so quintessentially her. tThe Duchess of Marlborough topped her sky blue suit and lacy blouse with a white hat wrapped in pleated swaths of organdie. I believe Princess Michael of Kent was also in attendance although I have been unable to locate a photo of her hat.
Princess Alexandra of Kent, July 1, 1995 | Royal Hats  Duchess of Marlborough, July 1, 1995 | Royal Hats
Empress Farah of Iran and her daughter-in-law Princess Yasmin, both wore hats trimmed with large bows. While Farah’s hat had a square crown and larger crown than Yasmine’s hat, which had a smaller cartwheel shaped brim, I think both hats are perfect examples of 1990s millinery fashion.
Empress Farah and Princess Yasmine, July 1, 1995 | Royal Hats
Princess Marina of Savoy (now Princess of Naples) memorably wore a large navy picture hat trimmed with a wide swath of coordinating feathers. The hat on its own is a bold look but paired with her feather hemmed dress, is almost beyond description. In comparison, the Duchess of Bragança, who had married the Duke earlier in 1995, was more conservatively dressed in a pistachio green suit and matching floral trimmed hat.
Princess Marina of Savoy, July 1, 1995 | Royal Hats Duchess of Bragança, July 1, 1995 | Royal Hats
Queen Margarita of Bulgaria wore an interesting domed hat in natural straw trimmed by a slim burgundy ruffle near the top of the crown. Her daughter-in-law Carla, the Princess of Panagyurishte, wore a simple cream straw hat.
Queen Marie, July 1, 1995 | Royal Hats 1995-01-07 Pavlos & MC wedding 54
The Princess of Vidin topped a pale blue and brown flowered suit with a chocolate straw hat. The brim on the front of the hat was curled back to the crown, leaving a halo around her face. Rosario, The Princess of Preslav, wore a large straw picture hat. With a beige square crown and white curved brim, edged in a wide beige stripe, the hat coordinated well with Rosario’s beige and white Valentino dress. Princess Kalina, who attended with Prince Laurent of Belgium, wore a characteristically unusual outfit, pairing a floppy natural straw picture hat with an embroidered, slinky bias cut dress.
That concludes our look back at the Greek Royal Wedding! I am most curious to hear your thoughts on the hats worn by these royal guests. And, I’m sure you join me in wishing Crown Prince Pavlos and Princess Marie-Chantal a very happy 20th anniversary.
Greek Royal wedding, July 1, 1995 | Royal Hats
Photos from The Royal Forums and Getty as indicated

Greek Royals Celebrate 20th Anniversary

Prince Pavlors and Marie-Chantal Miller, July 1, 1995 | Royal HatsRoyal Hats

On July 1, 1995, Crown Prince Pavlos of Greece, Prince of Denmark married Hong Kong raised British-American socialite Marie-Chantal Miller at a lavish ceremony at St. Sophia’s Cathedral in London. Attended by one of the largest assembled groups of royals this generation, the 20th anniversary of this happy day is a wonderful opportunity to look back at it.

One might think that a royal family in exile might celebrate passages of life on a more modest scale but such was not the case with this event. With 1400 guests, a reported budget of eight million US dollars, a reception at Hampton Court Palace, and 62 pieces of Valentino couture worn by the bridal party and guests, this wedding was as extravagant and grand-scale as they come. I suppose when the bride is the daughter of a billionaire entrepreneur and the groom (who was born crown prince of a reigning monarchy) counts the Queens of Spain and Denmark as his aunts, modest is not an option.

Crown Prince Pavlos and Marie-Chantal Miller, July 1, 1995 | Royal Hats  Crown Prince Pavlos and Marie-Chantal Miller, July 1, 1995 | Royal Hats

It was therefore, no surprise that Marie-Chantal went to Valentino for her wedding dress. Made of ivory silk, the gown featured a four and a half metre train and was trimmed with twelve different varieties of handmade lace. The high-necked lace bodice with long sleeves was encrusted with pearls, forming a garden of flowers against a delicate lattice background. My favourite detail on the dress was the bottom of the skirt, which was appliquéd with silk roses in a medallion motif.

Crown Prince Pavlos and Marie-Chantal Miller, July 1, 1995 | Royal Hats

Crown Prince Pavlos and Marie-Chantal Miller, July 1, 1995 | Royal Hats

Marie-Chantal’s veil, made of handmade Chantilly lace, was woven and embroidered with motifs of flowers and butterflies. The wide border of intricate scallops wrapped around the piece, framing both Marie-Chantal’s face and the train of her gown. The veil was anchored by the Greek Antique Corsage Tiara, on loan from Queen Anne-Marie.

Crown Prince Pavlos and Marie-Chantal Miller, July 1, 1995 | Royal Hats  Crown Prince Pavlos and Marie-Chantal Miller, July 1, 1995 | Royal Hats

This tiara was a wonderful pairing for this ensemble- the lightness and delicacy of the design was perfect for Marie-Chantal’s inaugural tiara while the height and heft of the piece stood up to her elaborately patterned veil.

I think this is one of the royal dresses and veils that requires a close-up look to appreciate its immense and intricate detail (detail that required twenty-five Valentino seamstresses four months to create at an estimated quarter of a million US dollars at the time it was made). Unfortunately, this detail is lost on many photos and the petite Marie-Chantal is left looking swamped by a dress that overwhelms her. While the ensemble is incredibly royal and is undeniably, a couture masterpiece, I think it was simply too much for this young bride.

Crown Prince Pavlos and Marie-Chantal Miller, July 1, 1995 | Royal Hats

Crown Prince Pavlos and Marie-Chantal Miller, July 1, 1995 | Royal Hats

I’m curious to hear your thoughts about this royal bridal ensemble, 20 years after it was worn. Do you think it has transcended time? You can also watch the full ceremony below.

Jump over to this post to see hats worn by family members of the couple and to this post for hats worn by other royal guests.

Photos from  AFP, Lord LichfieldPeter Macdiarmid, Lord Lichfield, and Lord Lichfield via Getty; David Seidner; The Royal Forums; and Getty as indicated

Swedish Royal Wedding

Royal Hats

Prince Carl Philip of Sweden and Sofia Hellqvist were married yesterday at the Royal Chapel in the Royal Palace in Stockholm. While this was the final Swedish royal wedding for a generation, it was a smaller, quieter affair with more personal touches than grand fanfare. Here is a review of the headpieces and tiaras that attended this event and a look at the formal wedding portraits.

Prince Carl Philip and Princess Sofia, June 13, 2015

The Bridal Couple

Swedish Royals
Queen Silvia, Crown Princess Victoria, Princess Madeleine, Princess Estelle

Extended Swedish Royals
Princess Margaretha, Princess Birgitte, Princess Désirée, Princess Christina, Désirée von Bohlen und Halbach,
Countess Marianne Bernadotte of Wisborg and Countess Bettina Bernadotte of Wisborg

Danish Royals
Queen Margrethe, Crown Princess Mary and Princess Marie

Norwegian Royals
Queen Sonja, Crown Princess Mette-Marit Princess Märtha Louise

Guests from Other Reigning Royal Families
Queen Mathilde, Queen Máxima, the Countess of Wessex,
Princess Hisako of Takamado

Guests from Non- Reigning Royal Families
Princess Tatiana of Greece
Princess Ursula of Bavaria, Princess Anna of Bavaria

Prince Carl Philip and Princess Sofia, June 13, 2015

Prince Carl Philip and Princess Sofia, June 13, 2015

Prince Carl Philip and Princess Sofia, June 13, 2015 Prince Carl Philip and Princess Sofia, June 13, 2015

Swedish Royal Wedding: Non- Reigning Royal Families

Royal Hats The wedding of Prince Carl Philip of Sweden and Sofia Hellqvist yesterday also saw a number of guests from non-reigning royal houses. Representing the Greek royals, Princess Tatiana wowed in an exquisitely beaded Celia Kritharioti gown in dove grey. The light gown was perfectly complimented by Tatiana’s small diamond tiara, a piece not previously seen before. I hope this is a permanent addition to Tatiana’s jewel vault because the proportion, scale and delicacy of it are lovely on her.

Princess Tatiana, June 13, 2015 | Royal Hats Princess Tatiana, June 13, 2015 | Royal Hats

One of the biggest tiara surprses at this wedding appeared on Princess Ursula of Bavaria. While the scrolled diamond tiara looked lovely on her, it is eerily reminiscent of the famous Spencer tiara. The Bavarian royals have sent several larger tiaras to auction in recent years and this piece has a few royal jewel watchers wondering if it is a new purchase or has been pulled out from the depths of the family vault.  Its history aside, this tiara is a beautiful one that I thought would have benefited from either Ursula’s large drop earrings or multiple strands of pearls but not both.

Princess Ursula’s daughter-in-law, Princess Anna of Bavaria, repeated the small diamond fringe tiara we saw her wear to Princess Madeleine’s wedding two years ago. This time, however, she paired it with a grand up-do which showed the piece to much greater effect. With her dramatic diamond earrings and navy and silver dress, Anna looked stunning.

That covers our review of all the tiaras worn by guests at the Swedish royal wedding! Stay tuned for a final post with all the official wedding portraits to tie up coverage of this event.

Photos from Albert Nieboer/dpa and Albert Nieboer/dpa via Corbis; Getty as indicated

Swedish Royal Wedding: Royal Guests

Royal Hats A number of other reigning royal houses were represented among the guests at Prince Carl Philip and Sofia Hellqvist’s wedding yesterday. Queen Mathilde of Belgium topped her blue gown with the bandeau bottom piece of the Nine Provinces tiara. The simple scroll motif and low height of this tiara make it a more modest piece but in combination with her diamond and pearl drop earrings and diamanté studded off the shoulder gown (in what is THE most perfect shade of blue on her), Mathilde looked classically beautiful.

Queen Máxima wore her Mellerio Ruby tiara, a piece made up of three large scrolls connected by suspended diamond swags. With a matching necklace and bracelet, the tiara makes a grand but very light, delicate statement. I thought it was the perfect piece to pair with her embroidered lace Jan Taminiau gown, a gown many of you will recognize from her and King Willem-Alexander’s inaguration in April 2013. As she often does at such formal events, Máxima looked incredible.

Queen Máxima and Queen Mathilde, June 13, 2015 | Royal Hats

The Countess of Wessex wore her Aquamarine tiara made up of diamond scrolls around a central aquamarine. It was beautifully paired with small drop earrings, an aquamarine pendant and a grey lace dress by Czech designer Taťána Kovaříková. While some might be underwhelmed by the streamlined gown, it was exactly the right cut and shade to show the aquamarines to greatest effect and I thought Sophie looked very elegant.

Countess of Wessex, June 13, 2015 | Royal Hats

Princess Hisako of Takamado wore a diamond tiara with small pearl drops that, like the tiara she wore for Princess Madeleine’s wedding two years ago, I assume is one from the vast Japanese Royal collection allocated for her use. This piece is a perfect proportion for petite Princess Hisako; it appears that it combines with her earrings and delicate necklace to form a diamond and pearl parure. Throughout the video stream yesterday, Princess Hisako seemed to be enjoying herself immensely, wearing a wide smile and looking most lovely in her pale green, gold embroidered gown.

Just two posts remain in our coverage of the Swedish royal wedding- royal representatives from non-reigning royal families are up next.

Photos from Splash News,  Patrick van Katwijk/dpa and Patrick van Katwijk/dpa via Corbis; Getty as indicated

Swedish Royal Wedding: Norwegian Royals

Royal Hats While the Norwegian Royal Family are not direct relations of the Swedish Royal Family, they are close friends. As such, the Norwegian royals were well represented yesterday at the wedding of Prince Carl Philip and Sofia Hellqvist.

Queen Sonja wore Queen Maud’s Pearl and Diamond Tiara, a beautiful piece made of up diamond scrolls and festoons topped with upright pearls. This piece looks great on Sonja, whose hairstyle does much to soften its high, central peak. What didn’t look so great, I’m afraid, is the voluminous, pleated, bright yellow silk dress. But then, I think anything with a large neckline ruffle should be outlawed.

Crown Princess Mette-Marit wore what is known as the Diamond Daisy Tiara, a piece gifted to her from King Harald and Queen Sonja on the occasion of her own wedding in 2001. The narrow piece features round diamond daisy flowers held within diamond circles that create a scalloped bandeau shape. As far as tiaras go, this one is very simple but it is a great fit with Mette-Marit’s clean lined fashion aesthetic. She wore a Temperley patterned silk skirt for the wedding today- a piece that seems so very her. I thought her ensemble was fresh, modern and very pretty.

Crown Princess Mette-Marit, June 13, 2015 | Royal Hats

Princess Märtha Louise wore the tiara we have seen on her most over the years, the King Olav Gift Tiara. Another narrow piece, this tiara features ears of wheat studded with small pearls. It is a delicate piece befitting of a princess with a minor royal role and I thought its placement yesterday, tucked back over Märtha Louise’s chignon, worked well. What did not work as well, however, were her large earrings, which looked like costume pieces. A delicate dress, delicate necklace and delicate tiara needs delicate earrings, don’t you agree?

Princess Märtha Louise, June 13, 2015 | Royal Hats   Princess Märtha Louise, June 13, 2015 | Royal Hats

Next up, a look at the tiaras worn by other royal guests.

Photos from  BrauerPhotos (c) G.Nitschke/Sabine Brauer Photos, Patrick van Katwijk/dpa and Patrick van Katwijk/dpa via Corbis; Getty as indicated