As the excitement builds for the Royal Wedding, I thought I’d share some interesting royal wedding etiquette traditions with you. Sadly, I didn’t get the gig to plan this one, so I’ve been consoling myself reading about previous royal weddings instead!
The Queen’s Permission
Traditional etiquette for a non-royal wedding would see the groom asking the father for permission to ask for his daughter’s hand in marriage.
For the royal family it’s an absolute must do. Before any of the royal family can consider a proposal, they must get formal permission from the Queen. This is actually required by law under the Royal Marriages Act of 1772.
Men in Uniform
This tradition started when Prince Albert wore the traditional military uniform and most royal grooms still follow this today. You’ve got to love a man in uniform!!
What to Wear
If you’re lucky enough to bag an invite, then you must avoid bare shoulders at formal day weddings. And woman absolutely need to wear a hat in church. I love this one – I adore hats but so few wedding guests wear them now.
You should also wear shoes with closed toes, no strappy sandals or peep toes and tights are a must have – no bare legs, no matter how tanned they are!
What’s in the Bouquet
Queen Victoria started another tradition in 1840. When she married Prince Albert, she carried sprigs of myrtle in her bouquet. After the wedding, Victoria planted a myrtle shrub at the Osborne House on the Isle of Wight.
Myrtle was a Victorian symbol of love and a sprig of myrtle is still included in royal bouquets to this day.
Royal brides don’t follow the tradition of throwing their bouquet. Instead it is placed at the grave of the Unknown Warrior in Westminster Abbey to honor the military service.
The bridesmaids at a Royal wedding are usually all under the age of 18. This is one tradition that Kate famously broke when she asked her sister, Pippa to be her maid of honour. And everyone remembers how stylish and stunning a maid of honour she was!!
Sadly, Kate wasn’t allowed to return the favour when Pippa married last year due to royal etiquette. And the same etiquette means that she won’t be allowed to act as maid of honour for Meghan in a few weeks’ time.
I’m looking forward to seeing Meghan’s wedding party (as well as the dress obviously!!) It’s expected that Princess Charlotte will be a bridesmaid and Prince George will be a pageboy.
Carrying the Train
Royal wedding dresses usually have a fabulous train. And etiquette states that the pageboys carry this amazing train.
Again, Kate broke this tradition by asking Pippa to carry the train for her.
I hope you found this interesting. I love to read about different traditions and etiquette for weddings.
If you need some help with your wedding to understand what is and isn’t ok, I have plenty of planning options for you to choose from. You can find out more here.
And I’m busy now on the 19th May but I’m sure I could change my plans if they really needed me to help! 😊