02 July 2011

The Prince and Princess of Monaco's Wedding: The Groom, Bridal Party, and Bride's Family

Because you know we never miss a chance for a uniform, a cute kid, or a well-dressed non-royal...

Prince Albert finalized his marriage to Princess Charlene in the cream summer uniform of Monaco's Palace Guards, which includes gold leaf and crown embroidery on the sleeves and epaulettes. The buttons feature the Prince's monogram, and he wore medals of the Order of Saint Charles, the Order of Grimaldi, and the French Legion of Honor. Personally, I would have liked to see him in some color, and can't stop giggling at the white shoes. Not his choice, I'm sure, but it's all very Boca Raton shuffle board tournament.

For her attendants, Charlene chose two friends to be by her side: Isabell Kristensen and Donatella Knecht de Massy (who is married to one of Albert's cousins, and served as one of the witnesses for the marriage).
Left to Right: Isabell Kristensen, Donatella Knecht de Massy

She was also accompanied by seven young bridesmaids, all around the age of seven. Instead of sticking to the traditional bridal party composed of friends and family, Albert and Charlene chose local girls from around Monaco, and dressed them in costumes inspired by traditional Monegasque wear.
Interestingly, it was Princess Caroline that took the reins in the bridesmaid outfits, asking the Ballets de Monte-Carlo to create the costumes and working together with Jean-Christophe Maillot, director of the ballet, to design them.
The result included plenty of personal touches, such as silk stockings embroidered with the couple's monogram, and aprons that feature both the couple's monogram and the name of the area of Monaco that each girl is from. Each outfit took more than 120 hours to create. The girls are also wearing necklaces of black velvet ribbon with gold crosses given to them by Prince Albert.
This is the kind of detail that can risk coming off as kitschy, but when the sentiment starts by selecting girls from around the country, I think the end result is a touching tribute to the culture of Monaco. I'm sure it was well appreciated by the Monegasque people! 

Last but not least, we must save some praise for the bride's family. The Wittstocks were well turned out yesterday, and they once again showed up some of the other wedding guests today:
Mother of the bride Lynette Wittstock looked extremely elegant, and Charlene's brothers Gareth and Sean are certainly two very handsome men, if I may say so.

What did you think of the bride's accompanying party?

Photos: Getty Images/Daylife/PPE/Reuters
Source: Mariage Princier