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A Royal Touch: Blending Your Tastes with Wedding Traditions

Sometimes here at the Viva blog we step back from our trademark themed weddings and remind our prospective brides and grooms that we offer up traditional Las Vegas weddings in some of the most beautiful chapels to ever grace Las Vegas! And what could be more traditional than a royal wedding?

But just like our couples don’t always do things the “traditonal” way, neither did Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden and her groom. Here’s our regular guest poster Cheryl Anderson Brown of the Princess Palace blog with their story:

A wedding is supposed to be about the bride and groom, but that doesn’t stop mothers, sisters, and others from insisting on their ideas for your day. Add centuries of tradition and the opinion of an entire nation and you’ll have some idea how Crown Princess Victoria, the future Queen of Sweden, felt when she married Daniel Westling on June 19, 2010. Victoria and Daniel were able to create a perfect blend of personal desires with royal traditions.

Here’s how they did it:

– They were married at Storykyrkan Cathedral in the old part of Stockholm, literally steps from the royal palace. However, instead of arriving at the church by carriage as many royals do, Daniel walked there and Victoria arrived by car.

– Victoria opted to wear the Cameo Tiara. Overly large and topped with old-fashioned cameos, it is not an obvious choice for a modern bride. But, it entered the Swedish royal family more than 200 years ago and has been worn by numerous brides in the family including Victoria’s mom and her aunts. She also chose to wear the long lace veil that had been handed from bride to bride in the family. With these two ancient and ornate accessories in mind, Victoria selected simple, clean lines for the dress, knowing that too much fussiness would be overkill. She added a long train under the lace veil which, instead of covering her face, was gracefully draped from the back of her head.

– Victoria walked up the aisle with her father, King Carl XVI Gustaf. This decision actually caused quite a controversy in Sweden where the bride and groom usually walk together, signifying their equality and partnership. Not only were feminist groups outraged, but the nation’s top archbishop issued a statement in protest. In the end, both Victoria and Carl defended the decision as representing not only their closeness as daddy and daughter but their unique relationship as king and heir.

– Music can be important part of any ceremony, especially, I am told, in a Lutheran church in Sweden. To that end, Victoria and Daniel selected several traditional wedding marches and hymns, but after their vows, they added one song that was clearly a personal choice. The pop ballad, “When I Tell the World You’re Mine,” was performed live (in English!) as the bridal couple smiled and whispered together as if millions of people weren’t watching.

– At the wedding banquet following carriage ride and boat tour throughout Stockholm, known as the “Venice of the North,” Daniel offered a deeply personal speech. Breaking with royal protocol which usually forbids the expression of emotion, he publicly said, “I love you, Victoria, and I am proud to be your husband.”

– Finally, in one more break with royal tradition, the environmentally conscious Victoria insisted that there be no confetti or fireworks associated with any of the half-dozen public events associated with the wedding. Nevertheless, the Swedish people still had a grand time and the entire country engaged in an all-out marketing campaign to increase foreign tourism, calling 2010 “The Summer of Love.”

In fact, although Victoria and Daniel chose French Polynesia, you might consider Sweden as a honeymoon destination after your Las Vegas wedding: the royal wedding seems to have made everyone there a romantic!

As you plan your own wedding, remember what the newly titled Prince Daniel told the paparazzi who tracked them down on their honeymoon: “As many said in advance, ‘make sure you enjoy the moment.’” Indeed!