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Why Princess Beatrice's breathtaking royal wedding dress made history

Beatrice's vintage look was a royal first

princess beatrice wedding dress
Kate Thomas
Kate ThomasLifestyle Managing Editor
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Princess Beatrice was the first (and currently only) UK royal to say 'I do' during the coronavirus pandemic, and now she is celebrating her one-year anniversary. The Duke and Duchess of York's daughter tied the knot with Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi at Royal Chapel of All Saints in Windsor in July 2020, and her stunning dress made history, too.

Beatrice wore a vintage Norman Hartnell gown belonging to her grandmother The Queen – making her the first ever royal bride to opt for a second-hand wedding gown.

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beatrice wedding the queen© Photo: Alamy

Princess Beatrice's second-hand wedding dress could start a new trend 

The breathtaking, ivory embellished gown wasn't originally designed as a wedding dress, and was given a few subtle adjustments, including the addition of organza sleeves. The sentimental choice was truly perfect for such a unique and understated royal wedding.

And it seems Beatrice could be about to start a revolution among brides-to-be, according to Princess Diana's wedding dress designer David Emanuel, who created the gown alongside ex-wife Elizabeth Emanuel. He believes the royal's choice of a second-hand piece will spark a new trend for brides making their "something borrowed" the dress itself.

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He exclusively told HELLO!: "Beatrice's dress was very simple and natural, especially when you've seen the formality of royal brides through the ages… I thought it was lovely."

Discussing the small tweaks made to the gown, David said: "She is very privileged of Her Majesty the Queen to give her the gown. It just had a little puff sleeve, a panel at the bottom to update it. It was very clever and it should inspire a lot of brides. 

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"Ask your relatives if they have a wedding dress that you can update without breaking the bank, or have a look in charity shops for a vintage piece."

READ MORE: David Emanuel tells HELLO! all about working with Princess Diana 

The stunning gown was created from Peau De Soie taffeta in shades of ivory, trimmed with ivory Duchess satin, and was encrusted with diamanté details.

It was set off with the stunning Queen Mary diamond fringe tiara, another meaningful nod to her family legacy since Queen Elizabeth II wore the tiara for her nuptials to Prince Philip in 1947.

the queen dress© Photo: Getty Images

Beatrice wore a vintage Norman Hartnell gown belonging to her grandmother The Queen

Aside from inspiring brides to opt for recycling nostalgic pieces, David also believes Beatrice's intimate ceremony will have an impact on post COVID-19 weddings.

Small can be best – and is the ideal way to save money. "If you take away the biggest budget, which is the reception, you can spend on what really matters," he said.

The Say Yes To The Dress host also shared his thoughts with HELLO! about his favourite royal wedding looks over the years – and it's another York bride!

eugenie wedding dress© Photo: Getty Images

Princess Eugenie's wedding dress is one of David Emanuel's favourites 

"I thought Princess Eugenie looked lovely. So elegant, and the plunging back showing off her scoliosis scar – brave girl. She looked breathtaking, simple. On the day, she radiated", he said.

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Princess Eugenie's choice of a Peter Pilotto dress, created to highlight her scars from childhood scoliosis surgery, when she wed Jack Brooksbank in October 2018 will certainly go down as one of our favourite bridal looks to date.

David was launching The Wonder Room at Bromley Brides in south east London, a gorgeous Alice In Wonderland themed space where brides-to-be can treat themselves.

david emanuel bromley brides© Photo: Getty Images

David Emanuel was launching The Wonder Room at Bromley Brides

He said: "It's a wonderful room, it's kind of kooky – it's Alice In Wonderland inspired. This is a whirlwind Mad Hatter's dream. I think it's very clever. No bride needs eight different people to come, you will have conflicting tastes. The room is the perfect setting for a small party." To find out more, visit Bromley Brides.

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