Posted by Edelweiss Patterns on August 14, 2015
A Victorian Royal Wedding
It’s time for me to write about planning my wedding!! My Victorian royal themed wedding, to be exact. With an ivory silk and lace ballgown that I made myself, and the two mothers in coordinating Victorian ballgowns, and music from royal weddings of recent years, and maybe with a piece or two from “The Sound of Music” thrown in as well… (I couldn’t get myself to leave out my life-long affinity for the von Trapp story on the most meaningful day of my life!)
It is a wedding planned with peach cascading roses and long satin gloves on the bridesmaids, a red carpet down the aisle as a nod to England’s royal weddings, wedding programs printed with gold Chantilly lace, and at the end of the aisle, the happiest couple you’d ever want to see.
When choosing what theme I wanted for my wedding, I knew I wanted something perfectly elegant, classy, and sumptuous. After all, you only get married once, and you really ought to make the celebration of your marriage as lovely as possible, I think.
I must admit I’ve been very disappointed with wedding styles over the last several years – flip flops on brides and bridesmaids, groomsmen in very casual attire, and tablecloths made of… burlap! Honest to goodness burlap! 😉 Really? I mean, if you want a farm themed wedding that’s perfectly fine, but why are they using burlap decor in reception halls? 😉
The weddings I always loved and wanted to emulate were some of the elegant ones I grew up attending, plus many of England’s royal weddings which set the bar for the rest of the world. (A few inspiration photos below.)
I doubt that any girl who watched the royal wedding in 2011 didn’t immediately file away some ideas for her own wedding after watching Catherine Middleton walk down the aisle, and I was certainly no exception! The last time I was in England in 2013, I actually went on my own mini “royal wedding tour” and visited Westminster Abbey (where William and Catherine were married), and St. Paul’s Cathedral, which was the site of Prince Charles’ and Princess Diana’s wedding back in 1981.
Both cathedrals were absolutely stunning, and I came back to the States thinking that there was just no place like this in America… I seriously wondered whether it would be possible to have a cathedral style wedding on the West Coast, and consoled myself with the idea of finding a decent ballroom somewhere.
Well, lo and behold, right before I got engaged, I found photographs online of a historic building from the 1800s that had the loveliest sanctuary with high, vaulted ceilings, stained glass windows, ornate carving in the woodwork, and two balconies above the pews.
Best of all, it was less than half an hour from where I lived! That same building also housed an ivory and gold ballroom, complete with chandeliers and a shiny wood dance floor. Then I realized that as a tiny little girl I had actually attended two weddings at this venue (it took my mother’s memory for me to learn that), and I was completely sold! In fact, the first wedding I ever attended took place in this very building when I was two years old. <3. I think the Lord must have had it all planned that I would get married in the same place where I first witnessed a marriage ceremony. Wow!
I want to share with you some behind the scenes photos of the wedding planning process!
I had my trial hair done by an absolutely top-notch lady (Janelle @ The Prettiest You), and she was able to help me achieve the late Victorian updo I’ve always wanted. (I knew I should have this hairstyle since I saw it on a bride back in 1999… It was the loveliest wedding hairdo I’d seen in person, and my mind has been made up on the subject since.)
I decided to wear the sparkling gold and crystal tiara which I wore to the grand Regency ball in England, so I took it along to my hair appointment.
And I picked out a frilled, ivory veil to match my gown! I have sewn a number of veils before, but this one at the store was perfect.
Naturally, I started planning and sewing my gown very early on, but I’ll admit it took a little while to finish – when you’re engaged, you’d much rather be talking or dancing with your fiancé than cooped up at your sewing desk. Nevertheless, I did finish it, and I took lots of sewing pictures to show you all next time.
And my wedding colors are – Ivory, Gold, and Peach! <3 I have always loved the combination of ivory and gold for elegance, and peach is possibly my favorite pastel. I think that these colors are well suited for a Victorian theme, and peach roses are so timelessly feminine and romantic.
The bridesmaids gowns are peach (just wait till you see them!), but I decided to be nice to the groomsmen and let them wear gold bow ties rather than peach. 😉
I knew that any good “royal” sort of wedding would needs lots of tea trays, so my dad and I (mainly my dad, actually), worked on making a couple dozen of these for the reception tables. <3 My thinking was to put chocolate covered strawberries, truffles, and fruit on the various trays, just to have some extra snacks in addition to the actual dinner and dessert.
I am particularly excited to talk about this part, because I purchased my bridal petticoat at Adorned in Grace Bridal, which donates all of its proceeds to helping rescue victims of human trafficking here in the United States. It is a really fabulous organization that takes donations of gently used wedding dresses, then sells them at a discounted price and puts the money straight into rescuing girls trapped in sex trafficking here in the Pacific Northwest. (There’s way more of that going on than you might realize.) So I was very happy to be able to support their cause in even a small way!
Music! No wedding would be complete without some gorgeous music! Without giving away everything about my wedding music (there’s going to be a two-camera shoot video made of the wedding), I will say that it will be very regal! I wanted to incorporate pieces from a few of my favorite films, and if you have been reading my blog for a while, you probably have a pretty good idea as to what movies those might be! 😉
As you probably read in my last blog post, I met my future husband while dancing! At a ball! (While I was wearing my Scarlett O’Hara ballgown, no less.) So I think it goes without saying that we wanted a lot of dancing at our reception. In particular, there’s one certain dance from my favorite movie of all time that we started practicing right before we got engaged… And I am thoroughly impressed with how well my darling man picked up on it! He’s really an amazing dancer, and we’ve put in so many hours of dancing together since we met last year (even before we were officially a couple), that we dance quite well together, I think. <3
I hope you all enjoyed the pictures, and I can’t wait to share some wedding gown pictures next time!
All the best,