Orchestrated and choreographed with military precision, the wedding reception of Pippa Middleton and James Matthews at the backyard of Carole and Michael Middleton’s Bucklebury home swung into a star-studded defilé de mode with focus on Giles Deacon’s £40,000 wedding dress.
Three big weekend happenings in May—the Cannes Film Festival, President Trump’s first trip abroad since taking office and the Billboard Music Awards—attracted many red-carpet crowds, but for the crème de la crème, the beautiful people and fashionistas the world over, all eyes were focused on the not-quite-royal-wedding-of-the-year: the nuptials of Pippa Middleton, sister of Catherine the Duchess of Cambridge, with hedge fund manager James Matthews.
At the wedding reception held at a glass-enclosed structure estimated to have cost more than US$100,000 erected in the backyard of the private estate, Ms Middleton stunned invitees with a Giles Deacon re-imagining of Grace Kelly’s classic wedding grown when the graceful movie star wed Prince Rainer III of Monaco 61 years ago.
The £40,000 creation by British fashion designer Giles Deacon featured a high-necked, cap-sleeved, and hand-appliquéd silk-cotton lace that created a seamless look that perfectly clicked with Pippa’s curvy torso. A continuum of the “Wedding of the Century” in Monaco, the cutting lines swooshed a dash of fairy-tale and contemporary at the same time, with a full skirt but not a stuffed one—and not radical by any means.
“The bespoke silk cotton lace was hand appliquéd to create an illusion of the dress having no seams,” Giles Deacon explained. “The lace bodice is embroidered with pearl detailing over an organza and tulle underskirt, which has layer upon layer to enable a floor-sweeping movement. It is a privilege to show the craftsmanship that my team produces in London and a real testament to Pippa’s support of British fashion.”
Milliner Stephen Jones created Pippa’s bespoke veil in an intriguing design of fine tulle lace and embroidered pearls. In a coordinated look, the Maidenhair Fern tiara with matching hairpiece by Robinson Pelham matched perfectly. The elegant design lines flowed down to a pair of Manolo Blahnik pumps in an ivory satin with custom-built pearl detailing.
A semi-private wedding reception involved Pippa Middleton’s royal relations and her close family. Elder sister Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge, plus Princes William and Harry and 3-year-old Prince George and 2-year-old Princess Charlotte graced the event with their presence. Prince George and Princess Charlotte upstaged bride Pippa Middleton when the two arrived at the wedding in adorable outfits fit for their starring roles as page boy and bridesmaid.
In tune with the classically redefined hues by Giles Deacon for their auntie, the pair wore custom-built creations from children dress company Pepa & Co. The page boy flaunted olive-gold knee pants, a cummerbund, a white silk shirt and white knee socks, while the bridesmaid wore an ivory silk dress with a frilly collar and a huge nude-pink bow on the back.
Both miniature royals have already proven to be great movers of boutique merchandises with the looks they wear in official photographs always creating a storm on social media. An earlier Pepa & Co. whale sweater-and-shorts-set worn by the little prince for his third birthday became a hot issue when it appeared on the Internet. Although the modern vintage outfits they wore for their aunt’s wedding were custom-made, there are plenty of similar styles on the brand’s website.
Mother-of-the-bride Carole Middleton looked elegantly chic in a pale pink outfit by one of Princess Diana’s favourite designers, Catherine Walker, as she arrived with her son James to the wedding of Pippa Middleton. Steering clear of anything outlandish or attention-grabbing, The Duchess of Cambridge stuck to a signature silhouette of a rose-pink midi-length dress by one of her favourite labels, Alexander McQueen.