Bringing Royal Customs to Your San Diego Wedding
With the recent announcement of the engagement of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, we thought it would be fun to focus on tips for making your wedding royal-inspired! British royal weddings have always caused quite a stir with brides from all over the world looking for inspiration on how they can bring a bit of the custom and class into their own ceremonies.
Wedding Dresses & Accessories
The tradition of a white wedding dress actually comes from British royalty to begin with, when Queen Victoria wore one at her wedding in 1840. A gorgeous white dress with a long train is uniquely classy, and the length has spanned from 9 feet all the way to 20 feet, which was featured on Princess Diana's dress. You have the option of adding a personalized adornment like a family crest, a monogram, or other important symbol, or you may continue a gorgeous pattern from the dress. Make sure to ask your dress seamstress for a royal train and see what options for customization they have available.
Your bouquet can also play an important part in making your wedding mirror closely to a royal event. Every royal bride since Queen Victoria has included myrtle in their bridal bouquet, which is associated with good luck in marriage, prosperity, and love. Your florist might be able to give you inside hints about the meaning behind each of the flowers you include in your bouquet, as well as the flowers worn by the bridal party.
Finally- almost every royal bride has worn a tiara, passed down through the generations and held as treasured heirlooms within the families. If you want to look like a royal princess when walking down the isle, tiaras are a readily available accessory.
Wedding Location, Time, & Transport
One of the most dominate features of British Royal weddings is the location they are held at. Historic churches like Westminster Abbey, St. Pauls Cathedral, and others dot the landscape of England, and both their history and grandeur add to the appeal of the ceremony site. Finding a royal wedding site in San Diego is easy, with many historic venues available that can make you feel like a queen. A perfect example of a royal themed wedding and reception could take place in the Cathedral of St. Pauls in Bankers Hill, followed by a reception across the street at The Abbey.
Of course the Royal Family travels in style, and on their wedding day having a horse drawn carriage is incredibly classy. The Always & Forever Carriage Company is a great resource locally for couples looking to arrive or depart in style.
Royal Wedding Music
Of course we are going to talk about music- primarily since that is the service that we provide, but also because the musical selections go an incredibly long way to making your wedding classic, elegant, and romantic. When Prince William and Kate were married, they custom chose the processional and recessional songs, giving importance to the many Royal guests that were attending and heightening the experience of the day.
As guests are seated, popular pieces include Bach's Fantasia in G, Elgar's Sonata for Organ, and other preludes. Prior to the ceremony, A Fantasia on Greensleeves by Von Williams, Benjamin Britton's Courtly Dances, and Elgar's Serenade for Strings could for the awaiting guests.
No royal wedding is complete without heralding trumpets, announcing the Royal family and beginning the processional. Traditional processional music from Wagner, Bach, Mozart, or Vivaldi are all great choices, but custom arrangements of other themes could also be inserted that are meaningful to the bride and groom. Music during the ceremony, such as hymns from Hughes & Williams or other favorites can be chosen if they are special to the couple.
Recessional music from Elgar, Mendelssohn, Walton, and others are traditional choices that can be incorporated to keep a classic and royal air about the ceremony.
No matter what your choice of music or style, the Left Coast Quintet can put together an amazing Royal Wedding ceremony music package for you, full of pomp & circumstance that will truly add to the day.
Dan is the bassoonist & one of the founders of the LCQ.