No abbey, but tiara and happiness can be yours
The lack of an abbey could be a problem: The closest local alternative would be a large church, but you can be sure it wasn’t built in the eighth century, nor does it serve as the final resting place of Isaac Newton and Anne of Cleves.
Plus, it’s unlikely the city would approve closing off the streets for half a day so a million people could gather to gawk at the processional. Or, really, that two billion more people worldwide would be watching it live on TV.
Other than that, though, what ripple effects has the royal wedding had locally?
First though, let’s relish in memory of that spectacular wedding. In fact, it would be possible just to call it The Wedding — capitalized like that — and everybody would know the one: Prince William and Kate Middleton’s nuptials April 29, 2011, at Westminster Abbey in London.
Celebrating their one-year anniversary today, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are two of the most famous people in the world. Their every move is watched and copied, so it stands to reason that their wedding could be recalled in echoes of influence at other weddings.
“Hours after the wedding, companies came out with copies of (Kate’s) dress,” said Judy Panozzo, owner of Victoria Rose Bridal in Grand Junction. “You were also seeing copies of her tiara within days.”
Kate’s dress, designed by Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen, was satin with a lace applique bodice and embroidered skirt. Knock-offs can be found online for as little as $749.25 (http://www.weddingshoppeinc.com). But Panozzo said she didn’t order any imitation-of-Kate dresses because her customers generally prefer other styles, with strapless dresses being the most popular.
However, wedding planner Tonja Kueper-Rinaldo, owner of I Design Weddings and Events in Grand Junction, said some of her clients are leaning toward more classic looks for their dresses and veils “and tiaras have come back huge,” she said. “Brides still want bling, but not a lot of bling. Subtle bling. Kate wasn’t a very bling type of bride, she wasn’t covered in diamonds. She had a more classic look.
“If I had it to do over, I would wear a dress like (Kate’s),” she said.
Kueper-Rinaldo said William and Kate’s neutral color scheme also may have an influence on 2012 weddings, because it’s cited as one of this year’s top wedding trends. Brides and grooms are choosing neutral palettes with pops of color.
Steve Boyer, owner of Boyart Wedding Photography, said while William and Kate’s wedding was spectacular and beautiful, it also was very formal. Brides and grooms in this area have long preferred, and still prefer, less formal events.
“What I do is shoot traditional shots, the traditional portraits, and that amounts to about 10 percent actual shooting,” Boyer said. “The other 90 percent are candids because that’s more about the feeling of the day.”
Panozzo said brides and grooms in this area tend to prefer smaller weddings, in contrast to the approximately 1,800 who sat in Westminster Abbey while William and Kate were married, the million-plus in the streets of London and an estimated two billion watching worldwide.
“Around here, a big wedding is 150 people,” Panozzo said. “A lot of our brides and grooms are on budgets, or they want it to be more intimate. A wedding is a celebration.”
She said more and more couples, too, are veering away from churches and getting married in nontraditional locations. Kueper-Rinaldo said she has planned or scouted locations for weddings at the Avalon Theatre, Mesa Theater and Club and the back patio at the Ale House.
“Couples are getting really creative,” she said. “They’re looking at places that would reflect their personalities.”
And that, perhaps, is an area where William and Kate followed, rather than established, the zeitgeist. When the royal couple married, Westminster Abbey was decorated with live, native trees, reflecting the couple’s outdoorsiness. They broke with royal tradition and had a buffet at their reception, and insisted on a party for friends and family in the evening, in keeping with their informality and down-to-earth reputation.
Likewise, Panozzo said, a wedding should be about the couple getting married, a celebration of who they are and the life they hope to lead, one with a king’s and queen’s share of happiness.