Royal wedding fashion dos and don'ts

2011-04-28 22:57
New York - The biggest fashion faux pas for a wedding guest - to any wedding  - would be to upstage the bride.

But there are other unwritten rules for guests to consider: Don't wear white, anything too revealing or a hat so wide or tall it would block the view of the person behind you.

"This is not a place to make a fashion statement for yourself," said Sally Kilbridge, deputy editor of Brides magazine. She ticks off more don'ts, including no miniskirts, plunging necklines and novelty socks, which have become a surprising trend at least among guests at American weddings.

The attire worn to a British royal wedding is appropriate daytime wedding attire kicked up many, many notches, Kilbridge said. Everyone's outfit should be chic, elegant and suit the very formal, traditional occasion while not letting glitzy, black-tie, evening wear trappings creep in, she advises.

The fashion role model here should be "high society's ladies who lunch" in well-cut, luxe-fabric skirt suits for the older women, while Middleton's younger friends could pull off slightly retro, Hitchcock-inspired sheaths or pencil skirts paired with nipped-waist jackets, suggested celebrity stylist George Kotsiopoulos, co-host of E!'s Fashion Police.

He expects a lot of hats, but, he says, he hopes they'll be toned-down cloches or a pillbox with a veil. "I hope they're not cartoony, but I do think we'll see some cartoony hats."


Black is fine as long as it's not funereal, according to Brides' Kilbridge, although you won't see the Middleton family wearing it. Prince Charles' wife Camilla won't wear it either, she predicted.

Camilla will likely pluck something she already had in her closet, Kilbridge said, probably something not unlike the tailored dress and lovely coat she wore to her own wedding.

Most of the male guests will likely don a navy or gray morning suit, which is basically the daytime equivalent of a tuxedo including a vest or waistcoat, and all of William's military friends will be in uniform, she said.

A guest with a well-known personal style, however, has a little more flexibility, said Kilbridge. It would be perfectly acceptable for Elton John, for example, to wear a flashy, embroidered vest under his jacket.

Fashion fans will be eager to see David and Victoria Beckham, and Kilbridge thinks they won't disappoint, although she wonders how Victoria Beckham will dress her baby bump. "They've had some crazy fashion moments, but this won't be one of them. She'll probably look fantastic. They want to create the impression that she belongs there. I think most people will be striving to look like they belong."

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