Even before Prince William and Catherine shared their first kiss on the balcony at Buckingham Palace, fashion designers and wedding planners were taking notes on every detail. They knew that whatever the Duchess of Cambridge had — from the dress to the decorations — would become an instant hit in the bridal world.
For local insight, we turned to four wedding planners: Valerie DiVecchio of Divine Creations, Brooke Palmer of rsbp Events, Heather Stewart of Stylish Traditions Wedding & Event Design and Monica Varner of Elan Event Studio. Here's their take on what trends they see emerging from the royal wedding. And a few things they suspect local brides will leave to the Royals.
It's too bad not everyone gets to borrow a Cartier tiara from their future mother-in-law. Fortunately, brides can get their own imitation. Tiaras aren't necessarily new but are bound to get a boost, thanks to the duchess. "Who doesn't want sparkles?'' asked Palmer. "The only day, legitimately, you can wear a tiara and own it is the day you get married.''
Small flower bouquets
Our wedding planners gave a collective thumb's down to Middleton's bouquet, calling it underwhelming and plain. One even said it looked cheap. Although the planners appreciated the symbolism of the bouquet's flowers, they said it was too small for the abbey and not showy enough for the occasion. They expect few brides will try to duplicate it.
Cathedral-length veils always have been a little hot for Florida, so the royal bride's choice of a short veil could be a good alternative to none at all. "I think people are going to start veiling,'' Stewart said. "It will be light and simple with no poof.'' Blushers covering the face might also prove popular. Often too virginal or old-fashioned for some brides, Middleton's blusher looked modernly beautiful.
Once considered a fabric for old ladies, lace could make a strong comeback after appearing so prominently in the duchess' dress. And while the long lace sleeves probably won't go over well in the Sunshine State, lace might appear elsewhere in the design. Middleton's lace-illusion neckline might persuade some local brides to look beyond ubiquitous strapless.
The couple pleased go-green fans by adorning Westminster Abbey with several potted trees rather than disposable flower arrangements. The trees — six English field maples and two hornbeams to up 20 feet tall — will be planted in the Prince Charles' Highgrove estate as a living reminder of the day. Word of caution: Huge trees, while perfect for the abbey, might not fit so well in an ordinary church or meeting hall. They are also a bear to transport.
Horse drawn carriages
When Catherine and her prince climbed into that carriage pulled by, of course, white horses, every female went, Awwwww. DiVecchio sees more brides hiring carriages to make a "grand exit'' from the wedding service. "People seem really enthralled by it,'' she said. "It culminates the fairy tale.'' No matter how your story goes.
Middleton reportedly wore four pair of shoes on her Big Day, including a pair of embroidered flats concealed under her wedding gown. Imagine tripping on sky highs with 2 billion watching! Wedding planners already see some brides switch into dressy flip flops during the reception. Walking down the aisle in flats might not be a bad idea, either.
Gemstone engagement rings
Anyone on the fence about engagement rings with gemstones, might jump over after seeing Middleton's sapphire and diamond ring that belonged to Prince William's mother, Diana. Although gemstone rings have long been popular among brides with those birthstones, the royal connection will make them even more mainstream.
Seeing the duchess-to-be walk down the long red carpet toward her princely groom might inspire more traditional, church weddings. Beach weddings won't disappear, but some couples might prefer the formality of a church wedding, particularly if the guy serves in the military (and will look super hot in an uniform.) "Everyone tries to make it quick and easy,'' Varner said of weddings, "but we'll probably see more people going back to a longer ceremony.''
White bridesmaid dresses
Catherine's sister, Pippa Middleton, almost stole the show with her bridesmaid dress, a tight-fitting white dress with a cowl neck. But none of our wedding planners foresee white catching on with American brides. Only the brides get that honor. And, given all the praise showered upon Pippa, that sentiment probably won't change.