Weddings are a time of celebration, but the fun seems to double when celebrities and fashion icons tie the knot. From what they wear to the spectacular venues, fans closely watch everything. Here are the 10 most talked-about celebrity weddings that have taken place over the years
Perhaps the most talked about couple in recent times, Kate Middleton and Prince William met while they were both students at the University of St Andrews and started dating in 2003. They became engaged in October 2010, in Kenya, and the news was made public in November 2010. Prince William gave Middleton the same engagement ring that his father had given to William’s mother, Diana, the Princess of Wales—a gorgeous 18-karat white gold ring with a 12-carat oval Ceylon sapphire and 14 round diamonds. The Royal wedding took place on 29 April 2011 at Westminster Abbey and was traditional in all respects. The stunning bride wore a full-sleeved, lacy white dress designed by the London-based designer Sarah Burton at Alexander McQueen. It featured an overlaid lace bodice and appliqued skirt made from hand-cut English lace and French Chantilly lace and paired it with matching Alexander McQueen shoes. Keeping the bridal tradition of ‘Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue’ alive, Middleton’s gown had lace sewn in (old), diamond earrings gifted by her parents (new), the Queen’s tiara (borrowed), and a blue ribbon sewn into the bodice (blue). Over 2 billion people thronged the wedding venue and more than 26 million viewers witnessed this royal union live online. In the marriage vows, the couple promised to ‘love, comfort, honour and keep’ each other. Kate Middleton followed Princess Diana’s footsteps and omitted “I will obey my husband” from her vows. This was sealed by the exchange of a single Welsh gold ring as Prince William chose not to receive a wedding ring at the ceremony.
After the spectacular wedding, the couple joined the lunch reception hosted by the Queen and then attended a private dinner in the evening given by the Prince of Wales, which was followed by dancing, at the Buckingham Palace for the couple and their close friends and family. The wedding cake was an eight-tiered traditional fruitcake decorated with cream and white icing and 900 sugar paste flowers designed by the cake designer Fiona Cairns. The singer-songwriter, Ellie Goulding performed at the event, singing her rendition of “Your Song” for the couple’s first dance. The event ended at 3 am, with a small fireworks display in the palace grounds.
Who can forget the idyllic wedding ceremony of the gorgeous Lady Diana and the handsome Prince Charles that took place in London in 1981? Lady Diana Spencer first met Charles, Prince of Wales, in November 1977. The relationship developed and the prince proposed on 6 February 1981, and Lady Diana accepted, but their engagement was kept secret for the next few weeks. Their engagement became official on 24 February 1981. Her large engagement ring consisted of 14 solitaire diamonds surrounding a 12-carat oval blue Ceylon sapphire set in 18-carat white gold and was made by the then Crown jewelers- Garrard. The Queen Mother gave Lady Diana a sapphire and diamond brooch as an engagement present. Following the engagement Lady Diana lived at Buckingham Palace until the wedding. Her first public appearance with PrinceCharles was in a charity ball in March 1981atGoldsmiths’ Hall, where she met the Princess of Monaco. The Royal wedding took place at St Paul’s Cathedral on the 29th July 1981. The bride wore a traditional white David and Elizabeth Emanuel gown, which went onto be such a sensation that it was copied by thousands of brides over the course of next several years. The dress was made of ivory silk taffeta, decorated with lace, hand embroidery, sequins, and 10,000 pearls. It had a 25-foot train of ivory taffeta and antique lace. The bride wore her Spencer family’s heirloom tiara. Charles wore his full dress naval commander uniform.
The wedding ceremony did spring a few surprises. At the request of the couple, Diana famously left out the ‘obey him’ part of the traditional vows. Also surprising was the choice of venue as Westminister Abbey is the Official Church for royal weddings. The couple had Lady Diana and Prince Charles27 wedding cakes. The Naval Armed Forces designed the official wedding cake. Renowned Belgian pastry chef S. G. Sender, known as the ‘cake-maker’ to the kings, created one of the other wedding cake.
Following the ceremony, the couple and guests went to Buckingham Palace for a wedding breakfast. The couple made an appearance on a balcony of Buckingham Palace and delighted the crowd when they kissed. A global television audience of 750 million watched the ‘fairytale wedding’ while 600,000 people lined the streets to catch a glimpse of the couple en route to the ceremony.
Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton first met on the sets of Cleopatra in 1963, and began an affair that gave us the most notorious and dramatic love story of the 20th century. Both of them were married; Elizabeth was married to Eddie Fisher and Burton was with Sybil Williams. Their on-screen chemistry was so intense that the director on the sets had to ask them whether he could say ‘cut’. Taylor was granted divorce from Fisher on March 6, 1964 and just nine days later, she married Burton in a private ceremony at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Montreal.
She wore a dazzling canary yellow chiffon dress, designed by her Cleopatra costume designer, Irene Sharaff. She also wore hyacinths and lilies as a floral headpiece with an emerald brooch.
Burton subsequently adopted Liza Todd (Elizabeth’s child from her previous marriage) and Maria Burton, a German orphan whose adoption process Taylor had begun while married to Fisher. They worked together in countless movies and their relationship was accompanied by an even bigger lavish lifestyle, worthy of a Hollywood couple – yachts, private jets, glittering parties and, of course, jewels. Richard once gifted a diamond necklace worth more than $1 million dollars for his wife, thereafter immortalized as The Taylor-Burton Diamond.
Referred to as the ‘Marriage of the century’, they were together for ten years before getting divorced in June 1974. Sixteen months later, they reconciled and re-married in Botswana on October 10, 1975. Elizabeth wore a Gina Fratini tie-dye wedding dress with tiny feathers in her hair. The second marriage lasted less than a year, ending in divorce in July 1976. Elizabeth and Richard remained fond of each other, however, and she even celebrated her 50th birthday in 1982, with him on her arm.
Born into a wealthy Parisian family, Brigitte Bardot professionally trained to be a ballerina before turning to
movies. In 1949, she modelled for a fashion magazine managed by journalist Hélène Lazareff.
At the young age of 15, she appeared on the 1950 cover of another magazine, which was noticed by a young film director, Roger Vadim. He showed the cover of the magazine to director and screenwriter Marc Allégret, who offered Bardot a role in Les Lauriers sont coupes, after a successful audition. Although Bardot got the role, the film was canned but made her consider Hollywood.
Her acquaintance with Vadim, who attended the audition, influenced her further life and career. Vadim promoted Bardot by showing her photos around, helped her get modelling gigs and even helped get into acting school. She made her screen debut in 1952’s Le Trou Normand (Crazy for Love) at the age of 18. The madly in love couple had to wait to get married as Brigitte’s parents forbade her from marrying until she was 18. Their romantic wedding was held at the Eglise de Notre-Dame de Grace of Passy, France on 21st December 1952.
On her wedding day, she wore a high-collared, hand-sewn, bustled dress that had a Belle Époque silhouette and accessorized with a muff and veil. Brigitte had personally sat down with the designer, Madame Ogive, the dressmaker on the Rue de Passy, to choose the fabric and design of her dress.
The newlyweds left to honeymoon in the French Alps. After less than five years of marriage, they divorced in 1957. They remained in touch, and even collaborated in later projects.
Belonging to the same social circle, Jacqueline Onassis Bouvier and John F. Kennedy met at a dinner party in May 1952, where a mutual friend, journalist Charles L. Bartlett, formally introduced them. Fondly known as JFK, John was a senator from Massachusetts in Georgetown back then, and was busy with the upcoming elections. The two started dating and the relationship grew serious. Bouvier was attracted to Kennedy’s physical appearance, charm, wit and wealth. They also shared similarities in both being avid readers and also loved writing and previously having lived abroad. He proposed marriage to her soon after but Jackie took some time to accept, as she had been assigned to cover the Queen’s coronation in London for The Washington Times-Herald. After a month in Europe, she returned to the United States, accepted the proposal, and resigned from her position at the newspaper. Their engagement was officially announced on the June 25, 1953.
John F. Kennedy gave Jackie a 2.88-carat Diamond and Emerald ring from Van Cleef and Arpels.
Bouvier and Kennedy were married on September 12, 1953, at St. Mary’s Church in Newport, Rhode Island. Boston’s Archbishop Richard Cushing celebrated the mass. The wedding, considered the social event of the season, had an estimated 700 guests at the ceremony and 1,200 at the reception that followed at Hammersmith Farm. African-American designer, Ann Lowe of New York City, created the wedding dress. The bride wore a dress of ivory tissue silk, with a portrait neckline, fitted bodice, and a bouffant skirt embellished with bands of more than fifty yards of flounces. Her rose-point lace veil, worn first by her grandmother Lee, was draped from a tiara of lace and orange blossoms. Jacqueline wore a choker of pearls and a diamond bracelet that was a gift from the groom. The bride’s bouquet was of pink and white spray orchids and gardenias. The dress is now housed at the Kennedy Library in Boston, Massachusetts.
The reception held on the terrace of the 300 acre Auchincloss oceanfront estate, Hammersmith Farm, saw more than twelve hundred guests. The wedding cake almost four feet tall and ordered by Joseph P. Kennedy. Performed by Meyer Davis and his orchestra, the couple danced to ‘I Married an Angel’ under a huge canopy.
The newlyweds honeymooned in Acapulco, Mexico before settling in their new home, Hickory Hill in Virginia.
Grace Kelly and Prince Ranier III had the most glamorous wedding of that era. Grace Kelly was a popular film actress, who gained stardom from her performances in movies like The Country Girl, High Noon and Dial M for Murder. The couple met when Grace Kelly headed the U.S. delegation at the Cannes Film Festival in April 1955. While there, she was invited to participate in a photo session at the Palace of Monaco with Prince Rainier III. After a series of delays and complications, she met him in Monaco.
Upon returning to America, Kelly began work on The Swan, in which she coincidentally portrayed a princess, and she meanwhile began a private correspondence with Rainier. In December 1955, Rainier went to America to meet Kelly and her family, and after three days, he proposed. She accepted and the families began preparations for what was termed as ‘The Wedding of the Centure’. She wore her engagement ring in her last movie High Society.
The wedding was set for April 19, 1956. The Palace of Monaco was painted and redecorated throughout. On April 4, 1956, Grace, with her family, friends and extended relatives boarded the ocean liner SS Constitution for the French Riviera. Thousands of fans sent the party off for the eight-day voyage. More than 20,000 people lined the streets of Monaco to greet the future princess consort.
The laws of Monaco required two ceremonies – both a civil ceremony and a religious wedding. The 16-minute
civil ceremony took place in the Palace Throne Room of Monaco on April 18, 1956, and 3,000 guests attended a reception later in the day. The following day the church ceremony took place at Monaco’s Saint Nicholas
Cathedral. The wedding is estimated to have been watched by over 30 million viewers on live television.
Grace Kelly had two wedding outfits for her civil and religious ceremonies, which were both gifts from her film studios MGM and were created by the head costume designer, Helen Rose.
The gown she wore to the religious ceremony took 30 seamstresses at the studio six weeks to make and had
a high collar, elegant lace sleeves and a full skirt. The dress was made of delicate rose point Brussels lace, which was 125 years old, and a silk faille skirt. Instead of a tiara, she wore a beaded floral Juliet cap with a 90-yard veil and carried a pearl-encrusted prayer book and a delicate bouquet of Lilies of the Valley. Kelly’s shoe designer David Evins hid a copper penny inside her right shoe for good luck.
She and Rainier left that night for their seven-week Mediterranean honeymoon cruise on his yacht, Deo Juvante II. During her marriage, Kelly was unable to continue her acting career. Instead, she performed her daily duties as princess and became involved in philanthropic work.
Audrey Hepburn is one of the most iconic fashion diva and was a renowned film actress. She shot to stardom forplaying the lead role in Roman Holiday (1953), for which she was the first actress to win an Academy Award, a Golden Globe and a BAFTA Award for a single performance. She met Mel Ferrer at a cocktail party hosted by Gregory Peck, a mutual friend of the two and subsequently starred in a play Ondine together and started dating. Eight months later, on 25 September 1954, they were married in Bürgenstock, Switzerland, while preparing to star together in the film War and Peace (1955).
Hepburn went through great lengths to preserve the privacy of her relationship with Ferrer, especially wedding details.
Hepburn chose a tea-length flared wedding dress with a satin sash, ball gown sleeves and a high neck, paired with elbow-length gloves. The Pierre Balmain-designed dress was the perfect choice for the doe-eyed Hepburn, who was riding that young innocent fame post-Roman Holiday.
After the positively fairy tale like wedding in the tiny chapel, close friends and family were treated to a wedding breakfast reception. The marriage however, had its own turbulences as rumors, miscarriages and a fight for the spotlight constantly plagued the couple. Happily, after many attempts, Hepburn would give birth to her first son, Sean Ferrer, in July 1960. The couple divorced after 14 years in 1968.
Queen Rania of Jordan has redefined the look of the modern monarch with her own sense of style. She is an international style icon who is undeniably charismatic and modern. She is also committed to defending children’s and women’s rights, and bridging the gap between East and West. She was born without any royal affiliations in a middle class family and did her graduation from Cairo.
She met Jordanian Abdullah bin Al-Hussein, who was a prince at that time, at a dinner party in January 1993 hosted by his sister when Rania accompanied a fellow Apple co-worker to the party. She was 22 years old, the daughter of a Palestinian doctor and had worked in the corporate world while he was 31 and was preparing for a life devoted to the military. At the time of their whirlwind romance, neither knew that they would end up as Jordan’s king and queen.
Madly in love, they got two engaged months later, and were set to marry in June 1993 at the Zahran Palace.
Queen Rania wore an elegant wedding dress designed by the British fashion designer Bruce Oldfield. Drawing on inspiration from the embellishments on Syrian formal dresses, Oldfield added gold detailing to the trim of the bride’s voluminous gown, matching hair ornament and gloves. The dress had exaggerated lapels, short sleeves, and large belt and the skirt was full with folds and extended into a train at the back.
For a later reception, Rania donned a new dress. The second gown is sleeveless, featuring a V-neck at the front and a similar dip at the back, with plenty of embellishment.
Abdullah became the King of Jordan in 1999. Together, King Abdullah and Queen Rania have four children.
George Clooney finally met his match in the stunning, accomplished human rights lawyer Amal Alamuddin. They met through a charity fundraiser in September 2013 through a mutual friend and were engaged on April 22, 2014 over a homecooked meal. They soon got engaged with Amal sporting a 7-carat emerald cut engagement ring.
Amal Alamuddin made one of her first official appearances with love George Clooney at the Celebrity Fight Night Gala in Florence, Italy. On 7 August 2014, the couple obtained marriage licences at the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea of the United Kingdom.
The wedding set for September 2014, the betrothed pair decided on the beautiful backdrop of Venice to celebrate their big day. They were joined by friends and family members in the romantic European country their highly anticipated wedding ceremony.
The resort served as the backdrop for a wedding eve celebration, with outdoor lanterns and candlelight filling the first floor, where the bride and a group of about 14 women enjoyed a festive evening.
Clooney and Alamuddin exchanged vows in a posh ceremony at Aman Canal Grande Luxury Resort. She wore an ethereal off shoulder gown by Oscar de la Renta, while he sported a tux by Armani. Clooney’s friend Walter Veltroni, a former mayor of Rome, married them. The wedding was widely reported in the media.
The excitement continued when the twosome stepped out together in Venice, Italy, boarding a boat one day after they tied the knot. Standing in the sunshine, they waved to fans and revelers as Mr. and Mrs. Clooney.
Elvis and Priscilla met on September 13, 1959, during a party at Elvis’ home in Bad Nauheim, Germany, while he was serving in the Army. Despite her being 14 years old, she made a huge impression on Elvis with her much older appearance.
They started dating soon after and were frequently together until Elvis left West Germany in March 1960. After Elvis left West Germany, Priscilla was flooded with requests for interviews and received fan mail from Elvis fans. Convinced she would never see Elvis again, and with rumours of his relationship with Nancy Sinatra, Priscilla resigned herself to the belief that her whirlwind romance was over.
After Elvis’ return to America, the couple stayed in contact over the phone, until the summer of 1962, when Priscilla’s parents agreed to let her visit for two weeks. Priscilla’s parents allowed her to go only if Elvis would pay for a first-class round trip, arrange for her to be chaperoned at all times, and that she write home every day. Elvis agreed to all these demands and Priscilla flew to Los Angeles.
After another visit at Christmas, Priscilla’s parents finally let her move to Graceland for good in March 1963.
Shortly before Christmas 1966, Elvis proposed to Priscilla with a three-and-a-half-carat diamond ring, with 20 surrounding, detachable diamonds, designed by the Memphis jeweler Harry Levitch.
They got married on May 1, 1967, at the Aladdin Hotel in Las Vegas. The bride wore a Vivian Westwood creation with long lace sleeves and pearl embellishments with a three-foot tulle veil topped by a rhinestone tiara. The wedding, featured very few guests and was over in only eight minutes. It was followed by a quick press conference and a breakfast reception, which was attended, by friends, family, and business associates from MGM, RCA, and the William Morris Agency. The wedding caused rifts between Elvis and several of his closest friends who were not invited to the actual wedding ceremony.
Following the reception, Elvis and Priscilla boarded a private jet and enjoyed a short honeymoon in Palm Springs. On May 4, they flew back to Memphis and retreated to their private ranch, just over the Mississippi state line. In an attempt to heal rifts, Elvis and Priscilla held another reception at Graceland on May 29 for the friends and family who were unable to attend the original ceremonies.