19 June 2010

Royal Fashion Awards: Crown Princess Victoria's Wedding

I've been doing nothing but watching the wedding live over the internets all day long, and it's pretty much been the best day ever!  What a great day for Sweden - a beautiful bride, a couple in love, excellent ceremonies and tiaras for everyone!  As I recover from my glamour overdose, here's a massive rundown of the best (and worst!) dressed royals on parade (Excluding the bride, of course - it's just not sport to have all the rest of these ladies compete against her!  She'll get her own post later.).  Take a breath and dive on in!

Best Repeat
Princess Benedikte
 Left to right: Princess Nathalie of Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleberg, Princess Benedikte of Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleberg, Queen Anne-Marie, and Queen Margrethe.
Selfish me, I was hoping for a parade of all new gowns.  All four of these ladies recycled dresses - and all from the last major royal gathering, the celebrations surrounding Queen Margrethe's 70th birthday.  We'll give Nathalie here a pass - she can't be expected to go splurging on maternity gowns.  Both Queens look great - particularly Margrethe in that beautiful apple green - but their sister Benedikte wins the prize.  This gown is interesting, colorful, and flattering - a killer combo.

Best Color, Blue Division
Grand Duchess Maria Teresa
Top row, left to right:  Princess Iman of Jordan (daughter of the King Abdullah and Queen Rania), Princess Kelly of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, Princess Sophie of Liechtenstein, Princess Rym Ali of Jordan, Princess Sarvath El-Hassan of Jordan
Bottom row, left to right:  Crown Princess Margarita of Romania, Grand Duchess Maria Teresa of Luxembourg, Princess Noor bint Asem of Jordan, Princess Anna of Bavaria
Lots of ladies in blue today!  Princesses Kelly, Sophie, and Anna looked incredibly regal with their major tiaras.  Princess Iman looked a little too serious for her age in her dark dress (I was surprised to see her there).  Princesses Rym and Sarvath both went traditional again, while Noor opted for a flapper-inspired gown I loved - if you aren't going to bring the sparkle on your head, bring it in the gown, I say.  Margarita kept up her love of bright colors, and classed it up to great effect - this is lovely.  And my favorite is the Grand Duchess, wearing Elie Saab:  this is the best fitted outfit she's worn in a long time, and I love, love, LOVE that she brought out the big guns with that tiara.  Too big?  I say no such thing!

UPDATE:  I finally found a picture of Carina Axelsson, and she's making a run for the title in her lovely blue number.  Cute little bolero jacket, though it's a little too close to a cardigan look for that dress.

Best Color, Pink Division
Princess Mathilde
 Left to Right:  Queen Margarita of Bulgaria, Princess Mathilde, Queen Sofia
Queen Silvia is the true winner here, but I've got a different category in store for her.  Margarita pulled her hair back and put on some jewels, and it makes a world of difference from last night.  Sofia looked lovely in her pale pink, which was just intricate enough without overwhelming her.  Mathilde wore her second pink gown of the weekend, and it's obvious why - such a great color for her!  And I even like her wreath tiara (usually one of my least favorites) with her hair styled like this.

Best Color, Light Division
 Charlene Wittstock
 Left to right:   Queen Paola, Princess Letizia, Princess Alexandra of Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleberg, the Countess of Wessex, Crown Princess Katherine of Serbia, Charlene Wittstock
OK, this looks an awful lot like the one Charlene wore last night (is it Armani Privé again?), but it's so great she wins anyways.  Killer earrings and I love her dark eye makeup with this color gown.  I really wanted Letizia to wear something with color again, but I suppose since she didn't wear her hair down I shouldn't complain too much.  Sophie's dress is a little odd, but she gets points for the best showing of her wedding tiara I've ever seen:  the hairdo and the shiny new Royal Victorian Order sash somehow make it more regal than it's ever been before.  Paola, Alexandra and Katherine all had good showings - not spectacular, but far from the worst-dressed list.

Best Use of the Family Jewel Vault
Queen Silvia
 Left to Right:  Princess Madeleine, Queen Sylvia, Princess Margaretha, Princess Birgitta, Princess Désirée, Princess Christina
Man, the Swedish ladies cleaned out the vault like nobody's business tonight!  Isn't it great?  Princess Madeleine got a new (to her) tiara, the Connaught.  I think it looks like something from The Tudors sitting up on her hair like that, and I dig it.  All of the King's sisters were suitably bedecked too - Margaretha in an aquamarine piece that hasn't been seen in so long many wondered if the family still owned it, Birgitta in the nine prong tiara that I usually don't like but sparkled especially nicely tonight, Désirée in the amethyst necklace tiara we usually see on Silvia or Victoria, and Christina managing to make the usually terrible six-button tiara look respectable.  Silvia outshined them all, though - that Braganza tiara is a work of art, and the perfect choice for the mother of the bride.  Her pink dress and topaz jewels are also pitch-perfect. 

Biggest Question Mark
Crown Princess Mary
For once, Princess Laurentien (left) didn't earn herself an automatic nomination to my worst dressed list.  I do have some questions, though - why the orange/red color combo?  And, why is the dress not an inch or two longer?  I'm not ready to put Mary on the worst list either, but I don't love this.  Why the lace at the top instead of a material that went better with the gown?  And, what's happening with the color combinations here - the dress looks green to blue, depending on the light of the picture (it looked green in the live footage to me), the sash is a strong blue and yellow, and the jewels feature rubies.  I guess I just don't get it.

Worst Missed Opportunity
Queen Rania
 I had high expectations for these ladies, I'll admit.  So while I think Maxima (left) looked good, and she wore the rose cut bandeau tiara which is one of my favorites, I was really hoping she'd bust out another new tiara for us.  Max's like a little magpie after my own heart, rooting out new treasures from the vaults all the time, and she missed a huge opportunity to debut a new piece!  I'm suffering from tiara disappointment with Rosario (right) too - I know she's separated from Prince Kyril, but they're apparently on good enough terms to attend this event together - why not wear a family tiara?  As for Rania, she spends a lot of time in the Hollywood world - this was her chance to shine as the regal Queen she is, but she kept it in the starlet sphere with this tiny headband (let's not even call it a tiara) and the messy updo.  And the purple shoes are too much for the dress.  Sigh.

Worst Dressed
Princess Mabel
 Top row, left to right:  Princess Astrid, Queen Beatrix, Princess Alexia, Queen Sonja
Bottom row, left to right:  Princess Elena, Princess Mabel, Princess Märtha Louise
Quite a few more worst-dressed nominees than last night, I'd say!  Astrid must have run out of bling, and her dress is awkwardly short.  Beatrix could share this outfit with Liza Minnelli.  Alexia's gown is creating a terrible shape, and the beading just looks heavy.  Sonja has come up with the inexplicable combination of coral and emeralds.  Märtha Louise is wearing the amethyst necklace tiara we usually see on Mette-Marit, and it looks great, but her pink dress is not doing her waist any favors.  Elena has fully crossed over into costume territory (it's a wedding, not a bullfight!) and would have easily been the worst dressed if it weren't for the wonder that is Mabel.  Seriously, she's sporting business trousers underneath a tutu stolen from a little girl's dress up closet.  WHY?  Planet Mabel must be a fascinating place to live - clearly a sanctuary from the regular sartorial rules of life.

Best Dressed
Crown Princess Mette-Marit
 Left to right:  Tatiana Blatnik, Princess Claire, Crown Princess Mette-Marit, Princess Cristina
Let's cleanse our Mabel palette with some ladies that really turned it out tonight.  Tatiana continued her streak of excellence with the perfect dress for a non-tiara, non-order wearing guest: sparkly and dream-like with killer earrings and breathtaking hair and makeup.  For the second night in a row, NATAN comes out on top with this great red number on Claire.  And bonus, that's a new tiara on top!  Cristina is also sporting a different tiara - it's the Cartier pearl number usually seen on Sofia.  I love the way it sits in her hair, and how the sea-like scrolls of this jewel complement the sea green/blue on the dress.  Gorgeous!  Best of all, Mette-Marit.  Another new (to her) tiara!  I think it's the same one her sister-in-law wore for her wedding, and I love it - let's all cross our fingers it's not a one-time show.  The dress is fantastic too: a great canvas for the blue sash to run across, and a wonderful color for my favorite Ice Princess.

 Phew!  Now that you've heard me out, talk back:  who were your best and worst dressed guests?

I'm still searching for pics of the royals I've missed - if you know of any, leave a note in the comments or drop me a line at orderofsplendor@hotmail.com, and stay tuned for the bride's own post, still to come!

Photos:  EPA/Belga/PPE/Nieboer/Getty Images/IBL/Daylife/Wireimage