October 30, 2014

{The Bride's Journey}

Dear Bride-to-Be: 
Your wedding day journey is full of expectations, excitement, maybe a little fear, a few do I look just right?thoughts, perhaps some meditative moments and, hopefully, a heart full of love! I thought you'd enjoy reading this excerpt from my upcoming book about the young Lady Diana Spencer's journey to begin her wedding day in front of millions of people. 

Finally, leaving from her future grandmother-in-law’s home where she spent her last night as a commoner, Diana’s world-stage future began. Two of the Queen’s prized bay mares, Kestrel and Lady Penelope, pulled the glass coach that had carried all British royal brides to their weddings since it was built 70 years before, but now it was traveling along a route that was overflowing— beyond anyone’s imagination—with throngs of happily cheering fans. Inside the tiny “pumpkin,” the first English girl to become Princess of Wales in 300 years sat beside her beloved father, Earl Spencer.

Whether a garden path or a horse-drawn coach takes you to your wedding, remember to, in the wise words of Thich Nhat Hanh: smile, breathe and go slowly. And enjoy your journey of the heart! 

Love. Listen. Let go.
...with love from Cornelia

[The excerpt above is from my upcoming new book, The End of the Fairy-Tale Bride: {Volume One} For Better or Worse, How Princess Diana Rescued the Great White Wedding. I'll let you know as soon as it's available for sale!]

October 13, 2014

{Attending the Bride}

Bridesmaids of Victoria, the Princess Royal, circa 1858

Dear Bride-to-Be
The way brides choose their bridesmaids changes just like the fashion for selecting bouquet styles or gown necklines. Brides invite friends and family members to be part of their wedding party for all sorts of reasons—and it’s not always about being “attended to.” Sometimes it’s to “out do” the last wedding in town or copy-cat a celebrity ceremony in the news; or perhaps some brides choose attendants out of a sense of obligation or just whatever it takes to feel like a princess!

Princess Elizabeth and her attendants, circa 1947
British historian Dulcie Ashdown described Queen Victoria’s 1840 wedding: “Behind her came a dozen bridesmaids, the daughters of peers dressed in white with white-rose wreaths and carrying her long train.” However, some attendants were heard to comment that if the train was longer they could be more graceful and not have to “bunch up” as they did! Princess Elizabeth, later Queen Elizabeth II, had eight bridesmaids in attendance for her 1947 wedding, including her sister Margaret, but it was her page-boys sporting kilts in the Royal tartan who carried her long, heavily beaded silk tulle court train.

Kate Middleton with her sister attending, circa 2011
Over sixty years later, when a poised Kate Middleton wed the Queen’s grandson William, the future Duchess was blessed to have a close relationship with her sister who, as the only adult bridesmaid, was the one to carry the bride’s heavy train as well as attend her sister in other ways. Dressed for the wedding in cream silk by the bride's couturier, Pippa had also been available to help with tasks during the busy months of wedding planning, be good company and offer womanly encouragement—something every bride needs, royal or otherwise!

Love. Listen. Let go.
...with love from Cornelia

[This is an excerpt from my upcoming book The End of the Fairy-Tale Bride: {Volume One} For Better or Worse, How Princess Diana Rescued the Great White Wedding. Stay tuned for publishing news!]