America may be a little swept away with the romance of a princess and a Royal Wedding, but you can’t deny the magnitude of the world getting a new princess, actually a Duchess of Cambridge to be correct, and of history in the making. I donned a British-inspired outfit today, a mini-homage to the event. And I, like everyone else, set out to find every image and detail about the wedding I could. I absolutely loved Kate’s McQueen dress with its long-sleeve lace and fitted sweetheart bodice. Westminster Abbey looked amazing and springy with its greenery. I have never seen such a long aisle! What a hike it must have been to walk down! Most importantly The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge looked cool and confident as they rode away in their horse-drawn carriage.
As predictable as it is, I am infatuated with the details of the day and of the historical significance of each choice of ceremony. And if you too are so interested, I have rounded up some of the more interesting facts that I could find—well I guess it depends on what you think is interesting. I am sure more little facts and anecdotes will leak out over time, but here are some I found today:
- At the lunchtime reception guests were served a variety of canapés. Of the tastier sounding variety were:
Cornish Crab Salad on Lemon Blini
Pressed Duck Terrine with Fruit Chutney
Roulade of Goats Cheese with Caramelised Walnuts
Scottish Smoked Salmon Rose on Beetroot Blini
Poached Asparagus spears with Hollandaise Sauce for Dipping
The stranger varieties included:
Quails Eggs with Celery Salt
Scottish Langoustines with Lemon Mayonnaise Pressed Confit of Pork Belly with Crayfish and Crackling
- Each of the 17 different flower designs on the official wedding cake has their own individual meaning according to the Language of Flowers. Some include:
White Rose – National symbol of England
Daffodil – National symbol of Wales, new beginnings
Shamrock – National symbol of Ireland
Thistle – National symbol of Scotland
Acorns, Oak Leaf – Strength, endurance
Myrtle – Love
Ivy – Wedded Love, Marriage
Lily-of-the-Valley – Sweetness, Humility
Rose (Bridal) – Happiness, Love.
Sweet William – Grant me one smile
- Excerpt from the sermon:
““Be who God meant you to be and you will set the world on fire.” So said St Catherine of Siena whose festival day it is today…Many are full of fear for the future of the prospects of our world but the message of the celebrations in this country and far beyond its shores is the right one – this is a joyful day! It is good that people in every continent are able to share in these celebrations because this is, as every wedding day should be, a day of hope.” – Read the Bishop of London’s full sermon here. And the prayer written by Kate and William here.
- The wedding dress, designed by Sarah Burton at Alexander McQueen, was a combination of French Chantilly lace and English Cluny lace hand-worked in the Irish Carrickmacross needlework tradition. The wedding shoes were hand-made by the team at Alexander McQueen and are made of ivory duchesse satin with lace hand-embroidered by the Royal School of Needlework.
- The bouquet contains stems from a myrtle planted at Osborne House, Isle of Wight, by Queen Victoria in 1845, and a sprig from a plant grown from the myrtle used in The Queen’s wedding bouquet of 1947.
- Guests of note:
Mr. Ian Thorpe
Australian Prince William met the Olympic swimmer, Ian Thorpe, on a visit to Australia in 2010. The Prince has since supported Mr. Thorpe’s charitable organisation Ian Thorpe’s Fountain for Youth, which focuses on improving health and education for children.
Sir Elton John
He performed at the funeral of the late Diana, Princess of Wales.
Mr. and Mrs. David Beckham
Prince William, as President of the Football Association, has met footballer David Beckham on a number of occasions. They recently worked together as Ambassadors of England’s 2018 World Cup Bid.
Mr. Guy Ritchie
Guy Ritchie is a friend of Prince William and Miss Middleton.
Miss Joss Stone
She performed at the Concert for Diana at Wembley in 2007 and at City Salute in 2008.
Mr. Mario Testino
Photographer Mario Testino took Prince William and Miss Middleton’s official portrait photographs to mark their engagement.
- The ring has been fashioned from a piece of Welsh gold that was given to Prince William by The Queen shortly after the engagement was announced. There was only one ring, in accordance with the Couple’s wishes. Wartski, the ring designer, is a family jeweler founded in 1865. Its first establishment was in Bangor and later the business moved to the seaside resort of Llandudno.
- There were no imported flowers, only English flowers and plant material. (Discovered after this post) As I suspected from watching it on TV, there were eight 20ft-high trees, six English Field Maples, and two Hornbeams in Westminster Abbey.
- In an apparently unscripted moment of the day, The Duke and Ducchess took a ride in Prince Charle’s convertible Aston Martin Volante DB6 MKII in Seychelles blue to wave at the crowds of fans.
More facts discovered after this post:
- Kate was to follow in Princess Diana’s footsteps and leave out “obey” in her wedding vows. Instead, she’ll say she will “love, comfort, honor and keep” William.