Dutch Royal Wedding 20 Years On: Religious Ceremony

Last week, we looked back 20 years at the hats worn to Prince Constantijn and Princess Laurentien’s civil wedding on May 17, 2001. Today, we continue with their religious ceremony, held May 19, 2001 at St Jacobs Church in The Hague.

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Laurentien’s gown, made of radzimir silk, was designed by Edouard Vermeulen of the House of Natan (she and Constantijn resided in Brussels at the time so a Belgian designer wasn’t surprising or controversial). The bodice followed a straight boat neckline, modernized with a cowl-like fold.

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Three quarter length fitted sleeves opened to a dramatic pointed calla lily shape.

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The gown’s unique silhouette continued with a fitted empire waist, below which the skirt opened, as a coat, to reveal a column skirt beneath.

The coat’s train flowed to a length of 3.5 meters (12 feet) over which Laurentien wore a full length, layered silk tulle veil. Unfortunately, the veil obscured the deep V at the back of the dress, a design feature that beautifully balanced the gown’s high neck at the front. At the time, I thought it was beautifully modern and sleek gown, elegantly regal in scale and design.

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Laurentien anchored the veil with the diamond Laurel Wreath Tiara from the Dutch royal jewel collection. With her pearl and diamond drop earrings and voluminous veil, the tiara has just the right amount of sparkle, gravitas and height to complete this bridal look.

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Queen Beatrix topped a blush silk floral collared dress and variegated pastel woven coat with a wide brimmed rose straw hat. The hat featured a wide, round crown with straight sides and flat top and an upturned kettle brim, trimmed with a layered pink silk hatband and swath of tulle wrapped around the crown.

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Laurentien’s mother, Jantien Brinkhorst, wore a red straw hat with wide, sidesweeping brim. Notice the gentle brim pleats on the lower side.

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Máxima Zorreguita, who would marry Prince Willem-Alexander the following February wore a brimmed taupe straw hat. The brim’s binding and triple layered hatband looked to be in the same silver silk as her suit, linking the pieces together.

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We’ll look at hats worn by other members of the Dutch royal family and royal guests in tomorrow’s post. For now- what do you think of Laurentien’s bridal look, 20 years on?

Hats worn by royal guests and extended members of the Dutch royal family
Hats worn to the civil ceremony

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Images from Getty as indicated  

Dutch Royal Wedding 20 Years On: Civil Ceremony

Prince Constantijn and Princess Laurentien of the Netherlands celebrated their 20th wedding anniversary earlier this month, a milestone which warrants a look back at their nuptials.

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Constantijn and Laurentien’s circles overlapped years before they decided to marry, Laurentien’s mother Jantien a school friend of Queen Beatrix and her father,  Laurens Jan Brinkhorst, a prominent Dutch politician and diplomat (and, ironically, vocal proponent of a smaller Royal House and reduced political role of the Head of State). The couple, who then resided in Brussels, returned to The Hague for their three day wedding celebration: civil marriage on May 17, 2001,  gala dinner dance at Palace Noordeindeon May 18 and religious ceremony on May 19. Laurentien turned to Edouard Vermeulen of fashion house NATAN for all of her wedding attire.

She arrived at Oude Raadzaal (Old Town Hall) for the civil ceremony in a watermelon pink belted coat and dress topped by a lavender-grey hat with upfolded halo brim. Trimmed simply with a hatband in the same straw, the hat’s focal point was a pronounced brim pleat over Laurentien’s left eyebrow.

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It’s always hard to regard past looks objectively- at the time, I was awed by the dramatic shape of this hat and thought the look to be bold and confident.

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Designer: Fabienne Delvigne

Queen Beatrix wore an ivory straw flat crowned hat with wide layered pink and ivory folded straw hatbands and a pink upturned Breton style brim that beautifully set off her ivory coat and pink accessories.

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Laurentien’s mother Jantien topped her pale cornflower blue suit in a matching hat in the most unique shape – a sort of pillbox with pointed crown over which lay a slanted downturned brim – trimmed with a long quill. The hat’s scale and shape worked so well with the open collar on her jacket.

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Máxima Zorreguita, who would marry Prince Willem-Alexander nine months later, wore a grey straw hat with jauntily upturned brim on the right side. The hat was trimmed in a dark taupe hatband and bound brim (notice the matching clutch!) and an oversize grey flower with lime leaves and curled feather staments that curved around the left side of the design. Interestingly, the hat would reappear two years later on a visit to Brazil with smaller brim and trimming. I prefer this original version.

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Princess Margriet topped her blush suit with a wide brimmed black sinamay hat with tall ruched hatband around the shallow, rounded crown and a relaxed, fluted brim.

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Princess Annette wore a cream hat with straight-sided, domed crown and mushroom shaped brim with side embellishment. I’ve not been able to locate a photo of Princess Marilene.

Twenty years on, which of these hats best represents fashion of the time? Which one stands out to you most?

We’ll continue with a look at the religious ceremony later this week.

Images from Getty as indicated  

Hat From the Past

Royal Hats to 19th April 1941, 80 years ago yesterday. While she wouldn’t become the Duchess of Devonshire until 1950, Deborah Mitford still turned heads when she married Lord Andrew Cavendish. And her floral bridal headpiece? Fantastic.

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Dutch Royal Wedding, 55 Years On

55 years ago yesterday, Princess Beatrix married German diplomat Claus van Amsberg. Royal weddings are usually celebratory occasions but in post-war Europe, the Dutch heir-to-the-throne’s choice of husband was not completely welcomed. As a child, Claus had been required to join the Hitler Youth and conscripted into the German army at the very end of WWII; while he was never involved in active combat, his past involvement with the Nazi party was problematic.

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Princess Beatrix and Claus van Amsberg announce their engagement, June 28, 1965

The couple stood firm and leveraged support from Beatrix’s German father Prince Bernhard to gain Queen Juliana’s endorsement. They further prevailed in gaining parliamentary approval for their marriage, a step needed for Princess Beatrix to remain in the line of succession, despite a petition with over 65,000 signatures against the marriage.

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The couple give notice of their upcoming marriage at Baarn Town Hall, February 17, 1966

These circumstances paved a less than ideal path to the altar and the couple’s wedding day on March 10, 1966 saw groups simultaneously cheering and protesting the union (a smoke bomb detonated during the carriage procession). Thankfully, these stresses are not evident in the Beatrix and Claus’ beaming faces. Their day started with traveling by the House of Orange’s gold carriage to a civil ceremony at Amsterdam Town Hall presided by mayor, Gijsbert van Hall.

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A religious ceremony immediately followed in the Westerkerk, led by the Reverend Johannes Hendrik Sillevis Smitt.

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Princess Beatrix wore her wedding gown for both ceremonies. Collaboratively created by the bride and Dutch royal family couturier Carolien Berge-Farwick of Maison Linette in white silk and duchess satin, the gown’s fitted bodice featured a high, rounded neckline and three quarter length sleeves. Sparkling beadwork at the waist highlighted the gown’s split skirt, which revealed a beautifully embroidered column underskirt and flowed to a sixteen foot train. While the dress’ streamlined shape was certainly of its time, the spectacular embroidery elevated it to one befitting a future queen.

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This regal royal bridal look was further elevated by the voluminous silk tulle veil and statement Wurttemberg Pearl Tiara. Impressive tiaras can easily overwhelm even a royal bride but the unadorned neckline of the gown, the extensive embroidery on the skirt, and the classic 60s bouffant veil balanced the tiara, beautifully.

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Princess Beatrix was attended by six adult bridesmaids, including her younger sister Princess Christina, who wore Wedgewood blue silk crepe gowns. Lace jackets with three quarter length sleeves, gloves, and matching bandeau headpieces with large feather poufs completed their ensemble. Two wee bridesmaids wore white silk dresses with white floral wreaths in their hair.

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Queen Juliana topped a stunning petrol blue velvet coat and blue lace column gown with a turban made of mottled blue and white silk petals.

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Princess Irene wore a headpiece of large deep pink silk flowers. Princess Margriet wore a white veiled pillbox, the fur hat linking with the collar and cuffs on her blush silk gown and coat.

 

Guests from numerous European royal houses were in attendance:

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Despite the controversy of this marriage, Prince Claus became an accepted and much loved member of the Dutch royal family and by all accounts, the couple enjoyed a happy marriage and family with their three sons. When Prince Claus died in 2002, he was deeply grieved by all.


Which hats stand out to you most at this wedding?

Images from Getty as indicated; Rolls Press/Popperfoto via Getty Images

Habsburg Bourbon Wedding in Austria

On Saturday, Prince Henri of Bourbon-Parma and Archduchess Gabriella of Austria were married on the grounds of Schloss Tratzberg in Jenbach, Austria following a three year engagement. Archduchess Gabriella might be familiar to some of you- she is the daughter of Archduke Carl Christian and Archduchess Marie-Astrid of Austria (thus niece of Grand Duke Henri of Luxembourg). There is a comprehensive explanation of the couple’s familial roots here.

Gabriella wore an ivory silk strapless gown with fitted bodice that extended to an A-line skirt with short train. A cropped overlay jacket of appliqued lace with three-quarter length sleeves and an embellished boat neckline topped the gown.

Gabriella completed her bridal look with full length lace veil and the Grand Duchess Adelaide Tiara with diamond leaf and berry motif and center sapphire (you can read more about the tiara over at Luxarazzi or The Court Jeweller). Some reports have suggested that the veil is the same as was worn by the bride’s elder sister Archduchess Marie Christine back in 2008 but as you’ll see here, the veil’s size and lace pattern is different. Whatever the provenance of the lace, it paired beautifully with the gown, lace jacket and delicate bandeau tiara to create a very pretty bridal look for Gabriella.

The wedding took place late afternoon so there were no hats but some lovely royal guest fashion is to be admired, including a sweet pink Austrian folk dress on the couple’s nearly 3-year old daughter, Victoria. At the back of the bottom photo, you’ll also catch wee Prince Charles of Luxembourg, proudly held by his papa.