Kate does her best not to upstage bride Zara.

Picture the scene – a royal wedding, 1986. Princess Diana at the height of her beauty attended the wedding of close friend Sarah Ferguson. Many were disappointed with her choice of outfit, a blue silk dress with a black cumberband and polka dots. ‘She’s worn that outfit before’, screamed the press. ‘Its too low key for a royal wedding’ others cried. But this was the whole point. Diana wore something that was deliberately low-key and had already been seen so that she wouldn’t detract from the attention the royal bride should be getting. She let Sarah keep her spotlight.

Go forward 25 years, to another Royal wedding, and a new royal trendsetter. Zara Phillips was bound to make a stunning bride, but there was still lots of apprehension about what the newly beloved Duchess of Cambridge would wear. Would it be another McQueen creation? Or something by Issa? Or Amanda Wakeley maybe. But thrifty, sensible Kate dug deep in her closet to find an outfit she had last worn to a wedding 5 years previously. Kate wore a beautiful cream brocade coat/dress by Jane Troughton that was originally worn to the wedding of Laura Parker Bowles in 2005. On that occasion Kate had teamed it with a fascinator by Phillip Treacy. The hat was the one thing that was noticeably different about the outfit, this time it was teamed with a large picture hat.

I think this was a deliberate gesture on Kate’s part. Interest in everything she wears is at a premium,  but this was Zara’s day, and so Kate wore an elegant outfit in a neutral shade that was chosen so as not to outshine the bride. This is becoming a Kate pattern. When she attended another friends wedding in June, she wore a black and white dotted dress that she had previously been photographed wearing in 2007. And we probably could’ve guessed that Kate would recycle an old outfit when she wore the Diane Von Furstenberg green dress only seen during the tour of America, to the pre-wedding bash on the former Royal Yacht Britannia, allowing Zara to shine in a beautiful one sleeved dress.

Kate and Zara are good friends, and I think this is shown in this show of female solidarity. This was Zara’s time, and Kate fully understood this.

Zara Phillips makes a stunning and modern bride.

Canongate Kirk Edinburgh front view

Image via Wikipedia

This month started with a rather dodgy royal wedding in Monaco, but ended with an utterly charming one in Edinburgh. Zara Phillips today wed her rugby star fiance Mike Tindall at the beautiful Canongate Kirk in Scotland, and she looked absolutely amazing.

Zara opted for an off-the-peg dress, rather than a bespoke creation. The dress was by Stewart Parvin, and was a simple yet elegant design of ivory satin and tulle.  It featured a concealed corset and had a bell-shaped skirt.  She wore this with a neat chignon in her hair and the Meander tiara, with its distinctive Greek key design. This tiara belongs to her mother Princess Anne, so may well have been her something old and borrowed. The dress featured a short train, and was teamed with a tulle veil that was attached to her chignon.  Zara also wore Jimmy Choo shoes. Overall, it was a fresh and beautiful look that I really loved.

Zara made a stunning royal bride and was accompanied by bridesmaids and maid of honour Dolly Maude, who all wore surprisingly short dresses, also designed by Stewart Parvin. These were also in ivory, which seems to becoming an on-trend colour for bridesmaids this season. I loved the ballet pumps the girls were wearing, and think that Dolly Maude looked really chic in her neat shift with bow waist.

All in all, a super stylish wedding party.