Monday, May 24, 2010

A little dissappointing... the York saga continues

Well, it's not news anymore, but the shady dealings of Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York are spread over every news medium on the planet today.  I have to say that I haven't been this disappointed in a member or ex-member of the Royal Family, in quite some time.  In fact, I am quite shocked.  Somehow, I believed that all the really bad press plaguing the family was in the past.  Minor rows and rifts here and there by the grandchildren, yes, but this?  Come on Fergie, shape it up and start living within your means.  What must your daughters think?  Not to mention, Her Majesty the Queen... doesn't she have enough to contend with already?  .... Poor thing.

Trying not to judge here.  I can imagine that when driven into desperate times, some succumb to taking desperate measures.  I do feel for the Duchess and hopes that she finds some sort of happiness in the future.

The picture above is the wedding day of Sarah Ferguson's parents, Ronald and Susan Ferguson... not a good close up of the flowers, but definitely appears to be a wired and taped all-white flower creation, typical for the mid-50's style wedding.  Sarah's parents divorced in 1972.

Royal Wedding tidbit of the day... Sarah, Duchess of York was very much the designer of her own wedding gown... she had the dress makers embroider many symbols and images on the 15 foot train, bumble bees, helicopters, flowers, etc.  Also, she had Prince Andrew's first initial "A" emblazoned in the very center of the train.  Most critics likened the large "A" to the Scarlett Letter.  It wasn't a good omen.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Turquoise - It's this years pink...

Is it really the color of the year? Turquoise, I mean for weddings... well, it's not, then more people should choose this bright and interesting color for their wedding color theme. When first presented with this color by a recent bride, my brain had to go into overdrive to figure out what color flowers to use, as there isn't much to my knowledge that comes in turquoise... or even close. My best strategy proved as success by asking the bride for a favorite color (other than Turquoise). Pink was the answer. I also considered the setting/venue, time of year and time of day of the ceremony. Outdoors was the location for the ceremony, and since we are in a coastal/semi-tropical region, I thought that pink and hot pink/fuscia would be a good match. As you can see form the pic of the centerpiece, things went very well. I stuck with the tropical theme and suggested orchids for the signature flower for the day, with lilies (a favorite of the bride) being the second flower choice. Sensible centerpieces, though containing many elements were fairly easy to combine. However, you have to have a good recipe and patience to get the water the right color. Green and blue (in the right measurements) makes turquoise! A late afternoon ceremony gave way to an early evening reception, still light outdoors, but not so light that many votive and floating candles helped make the setting all the more romantic.
Congratulations Courtney and Steven! married May 15th, 2010.
Royal Wedding tidbit of the day... King George VI, amended the rules a year or two after his daughter Elizabeth married Prince Phillip of Greece. Earlier in the year 1947, Phillip had relinquished his title, nationality, and religion (Greek Orthodox) in order to marry the then Princess Elizabeth. At the time of the wedding Phillip would have been a commoner, and his children would have no right to a royal title. But the King granted Phillip the title Royal Highness, Duke of Edinburgh... subsequently before the birth of Prince Charles in 1948, the King furthered the move declaring that all off-spring of Elizabeth and Phillip would be considered royal.

And here is one more pic from the turquoise and hot pink wedding.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Recreating the royal bouquets...

Recreating the magic... in this case a royal bouquet. The first pic is of Princess Mary of Denmark on the day she married Crown Prince Frederick on May 4, 2004 at Our Lady's Cathedral in Copenhagen, Denmark. Denmark is home to the oldest European monarchy. The princess, Mary is a native Australian, and the first Australian woman to ever be in the line of succession to become a queen.
Our other bride... my cousin Jordan immediately after her wedding in June of 2009 in Lincoln, Nebraska. I see the similarity in the bouquets now, nearly a year later. Honestly, I spend so much time analyzing the British royal weddings, that I tend to overlook the royal weddings on the continent. Jordan's bouquet is made of all white/ivory Eskimo roses, some crystals and pearls were added to coordinate with the detailing on the dress and the crystal choker, which was handmade by my cousin, her new mother-in-law. Her bouquet was a round nosegay, but she wanted some ivy, so I added many long strands of English ivy, making it essentially, a cascade. Similarly, Princess Mary's bouquet is a round nosegay of what appears to be white roses, freesia, and stephanotis... though from the picture it's hard to tell for sure. However, just like Jordan's bouquet, the Princess's bouquet became a cascade when the trailing jasmine was added.
Royal Wedding Tidbit of the day... There was a time when it was unheard of for a member of the royal family to marry someone who was not "royal". However in 1923, Prince Albert, Duke of York married Elizabeth Bowles-Lyon... Elizabeth was a commoner, Lady Elizabeth. Since the Duke was not expected to ascend to the throne, not too much bluster was raised at the match. However, the abdication crisis of 1936 caused a bit of a jolt, to put it lightly. When Edward the VIII abdicated the throne to marry Wallis Simpson, Prince Albert Duke of York became King George VI. So, literally, King George VI was the first British king to be married to one of his subjects. Surely enough though, Lady Elizabeth, Duchess of York became Queen Elizabeth. She was queen consort however, and did not reign, her husband was the reigning monarch until his death in 1952. His daughter Princess Elizabeth then became Queen Elizabeth II.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mothers' Day... and, more about Peter and Autumn

I thought this couple deserved one more post, not the most recent royal wedding, technically, but truthfully, there weren't too many pictures of the flowers from Freddy Windsor's wedding to talk about... so, here are a couple more from Peter and Autumn's wedding at Windsor Castle. A royal wedding wouldn't really be royal without the horse drawn carriages, and here is Autumn and Peter making their get-away in an open landau.

I think this first picture gives a great perspective on the bouquet as well, rarely do we get to see them from the side view. I heartily approve of the construction of this bouquet, as it is wonderfully multi-dimensional and looks very well proportioned even when viewed from the side. A florist in Windsor has great skill in making these traditional bridal bouquets, heavy with "wire and tape" technique.
Another picture here of Zara Phillips as bridesmaid for her new sister-in-law. A small pic, but you get to see the attendant's bouquets of all white flowers, Zara's being stephanotis. Kudos on the dresses for the bride's maids. A lovely color, and a much more modern design than those chosen for royal weddings in the past.
Royal Wedding tidbit for the day... the wedding of Peter and Autumn Phillips took place at St. George's Chapel, Windsor Castle. The chapel, not only venue for recent royal weddings (the trend seems to be moving to more low key, so not taking place at Westminster Abbey), but also the final resting places for many of the remarkable Kings and Queens in Britain's history, including.... King Henry VIII, King George V, King George VI and his wife, Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Kissing Cousins ... and their Grandmother

Prince Harry sure was the kisser at his cousin Peter Phillips' wedding at Windsor Castle. The affectionate prince is show kissing the cheek of his cousin Zara Phillips (Princess Anne's daughter) and also giving a peck on the cheek to his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth. This is surely something we don't see very often... Her Majesty showing any sort of affection in public. I would say it's very rare as the Queen usually upholds the highest level of decorum and modesty. But, the young princes, Harry and William are very much comfortable with showing their emotions and making physical contact with people they meet. So much like their mother, Diana.

I would never say that the Queen is unfeeling or cold.... but, during the years when she was raised and became queen, such public displays simply weren't the norm. I feel that people criticize Britain's Monarch excessively and unfairly for her conduct in public... hey, it's the way she was raised! And how often do we all use that as a reason for our conduct?

Now, about the flowers, I chose this picture to show the "kissin' cousins" as well as to get a closer look at the attendant's flowers for Peter and Autumn's wedding. All the bride's maid's bouquets are composed of all white flowers. Zara's bouquet is all Stephanotis, with many of the buds still closed. I can imagine how wonderful a fragrance that bouquet emitted.

And another thing! look at the way they are dressed.... can't Americans take some clues from the British when it comes to what looks good to wear to a wedding?

Royal Wedding Tidbit of the Day ... St. George's Chapel at Windsor Castle has played host to many noteable royal wedding ceremonies... Edward VII and Queen Alexandra were married there, as well as Prince Edward and Sophie, Countess of Wessex, as well as the current hier apparent to the throne, Prince Charles, when he wed Camilla Parker-Bowles, known know as the Duchess of Cornwall ... more about Camilla later. ;)

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Peter and Autumn Phillips.

Peter Phillips and Autumn Kelly... Married on May 17, 2008, a royal wedding with a lovely traditionally styled and constructed bridal bouquet. The bouquet is of an elegant length in a trailing cascade. Upon examining the pictures of the bouquet closely the contents appear to be roses, Lily of the Valley, stephanotis and the ever popular foliage... ivy. This bouquet reminds me so much of the bouquet carried by Princess Diana at her wedding in 1981. Not many brides these days choose a large cascading bouquet like this. The trend these days still seems to be smaller rounded clutch bouquets with a more varied color palate. I really prefer the all white bridal bouquet... and of course don't mind color when it comes to the attendants. Pictures of this wedding that will appear in later posts will show that for Autumn and Peter's wedding, the bouquets are in all white as well.
Peter and Autumn were married at St. George's Chapel in the compound of Windsor Castle. Peter is the son of Princess Anne and her first husband Timothy Philips, whose marriage ended in divorce. Peter is also the eldest grandchild of Queen Elizabeth and Prince Phillip.
Royal Wedding Tidbit of the day... In order that Peter Phillips would not have to give up his place in the line of succession for the throne, Autumn Kelley denounced her Catholic faith and became a communicant of The Church of England. Interestingly enough, Peter and his sister Zara are the first grandchildren of a monarch not to hold royal titles.