Royal Wedding flowers

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Zara Phillips

The Queens granddaughter married rugby player Mike Tindall at the weekend.   The ceremony took place on 30th of July at Cannongate Kirk in Edinburgh.  Thousands of people gathered along Edinburgh’s royal mile to a catch a glimpse of Scotland’s first Royal wedding in almost 20 years.

The bride looked very elegant in a full length ivory Silk Faille gown designed by Stewart Parvin, who is the Queen’s couturier.  The dress features a duchess satin hem and bust and a chevron pleated bodice.  Zara complemented her gown with cathedral length veil in fine silk tulle and the Meander Tiara loaned from her mother Princess Anne.  The maid of honour, Dolly Maude also wore a Stewart Parvin dress.  Her dress was a knee length cocktail dress in dove grey silk duchess satin. The bridesmaids and flower girls wore ivory dresses with grey sashes.


Zara’s flowers were designed by London florist Paul Thomas; she chose a classic theme of ivory and green.  The bridal bouquet was a hand tied bouquet of ivory calla lilies, green thistle, lily of the valley, hydrangea and silver senecio cineraria.  The bridesmaid’s bouquets were smaller versions of the bridal bouquet, accented with blue thistles.  The groom wore an ivory rose buttonhole with senecio foliage.

The outside of Cannongate Kirk was decorated with a huge garland arrangement made using hundreds of ivory flowers and foliage including roses, carnations, stocks, hydrangea, eucalyptus and green thistles. Inside the church there were four large urn arrangements placed behind the altar, of all ivory flowers and foliage.

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Kate Middleton and Prince William tied the knot today at West Minster abbey, and the sun shone for them after all.  They will now be known as The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.  Kate’s highly anticipated wedding dress did not disappoint, she looked beautiful in an ivory vintage style gown designed by Sarah Burton at Alexander McQueen.  The dress had a very classic Grace Kelly feel to it, and featured a lace appliquéd bodice and skirt.  It was made with English lace, French Chantilly lace, satin gazar and silk tulle.  The design contained lace flowers including the rose, thistle, daffodil and shamrock.  The skirt reflected an opening flower with arches and wide pleats and had a 9ft long train.  Kate wore a veil made from ivory silk tulle, edged with hand-embroidered flowers.  It was held in place by a Cartier ‘halo’ tiara lent from the Queen.

Kate Middleton's Bouquet

The predictions I made few weeks ago for Kate’s flower style were almost spot on, neutral colours and understated flowers.  The flowers at the wedding all had a very natural organic feel.  The couple reportedly spent £50,000 on flowers, plants and four tons of foliage.  Shane Connolly was the lucky florist chosen to create design for the wedding of a lifetime.  He designed all the flowers for the Royal Wedding including Kate’s bouquet, she held a petite shield-shaped bouquet in ivory and white, not quite a teardrop, a little shorter.  It consisted mainly of delicate lily of the valley with some hyacinths, sweet william, ivy and myrtle.  Kate’s bouquet will have had a wonderful fragrance, as lily of the valley and hyacinth are highly scented.   The wired design was very understated and suited her vintage style dress perfectly.  All the flowers in the bouquet were chosen according to their significance for the Royal Family and the Middleton family, as well as their meaning according to the Language of Flowers.

Lily of the valley – return of happiness

Hyacinth (white) – constancy of love

Sweet William – gallantry

Myrtle – emblem of marriage, love

Ivy – fidelity, marriage, wedded love, friendship, affection

Kate’s sister Philippa wore a comb of lily of the valley in her hair.  The younger bridesmaids were cute as a button wearing circlet headdresses made from ivy and lily of the valley.  The bridesmaids carried tied posies of lily of the valley, hyacinths and sweet william.  The youngest bridemaids carried pomanders of the same flowers held on ivory ribbon.  The buttonholes were also made with lily of the valley.


The flowers in Westminster Abbey were all English grown, many from Royal Estates.  The aisle was lined with 20ft high English trees with growing lily of valley around the base.  The flower arrangements throughout the Abbey were made with ivory flowers incorporating lilac, wisteria, blossom and azalea in a very loose and natural style with lots of foliage including euphorbia, viburnum, beech and eucalyptus.

Even though William and Kate’s royal budget is out of the reach of most couples, there are always more economical ways to achieve your dream style..but that’s another blog.  I think today they showed the world a classic English wedding, and provided a lot of inspiration for a romantic vintage look.

Congratulations to William and Kate, I wish them long and happy life of love and laughter.

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