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Head of the Class: 6 Lessons from the Royal Wedding

Happy Monday!

Did you all have a chance to catch up on your sleep this weekend post-Royal Wedding late-night/early morning watching? I am still on a high from Will and Kate’s big day and can’t get enough of all the details!

Needless to say, the wedding was flawless. Royal or not, I think brides- and grooms-to-be can learn a lesson or two from the new Duke and Duchess of Cambridge for their own big days. Get out your notebooks, because wedding class is now in session!

Lesson 1: Sleeves are stylish (and sexy).

Thank you Kate for wearing sleeves on your big day and for making them oh-so stylish and oh-so sexy! Enough with the strapless gowns, ladies–I’m dying to see more frocks with interesting necklines and cool sleeves. Covering up can be chic, as exemplefied by Ms. Kate in her lace-sleeved Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen gown. The royal gown will most certainly influence wedding gown designs in the coming months, but sleeves were already making waves as a trend at the recent bridal market in NYC, as seen on the runways of top designers like Vera Wang, Monique Lhuillier and Anne Barge. Check out Alta Moda Bridal’s blog for more on the growing sleeve trend.

Lesson 2: White isn’t just for the bride anymore.

Wearing white to a wedding, whether you were a guest or a bridesmaid, used to be a big no-no. But this faux paus may soon become a thing of the past, thanks to Pippa Middleton. Did you see the breathtaking, form-fitting, figure-hugging white Alexander McQueen dress created for Kate’s sister and maid of honor Pippa? Hellooo, gorgeous! The proof is in the pudding, folks. (More on this emerging trend coming up later this week from the style-savvy gals at Lily & Iris!)

Lesson 3: Two wedding dresses are better than one.

For your moment in the spotlight, why wear just one wedding gown when you can wear two? Following the ceremony at Westminster Abbey, Kate Middleton swapped her wedding gown for a second Alexander McQueen creation for an evening reception at Buckingham Palace: a strapless white satin gazar eveing dress with a circle skirt and diamante embroidered detail around the waist, paired with a white angora cardigan. Whether an elegant gown like Kate’s or a short and fliry frock, I always say “Yes” to a reception dress.

Lesson 4: Make your vows your own and personalize your ceremony.

Even if you’re having a fairly traditonal wedding (like the royal couple), you can avoid a cookie-cutter ceremony by incorporating meaningful, personalized, heart-felt details. For example, Kate chose to ditch the word “obey” from the couple’s wedding vows, the duo wrote a prayer that was read out loud during the ceremony, and they asked Kate’s brother, James, to share a reading at the ceremony. Don’t be afraid to tweak and update traditions to make them your own.

Lesson 5: Nothing looks better than a man in uniform (or a well-tailored suit).

Observe, if you will, Exhibit A.) Prince William in uniform arriving at the ceremony…

And Exhibit B.) Prince William dressed in a black double-breasted dinner jacket and bow tie for the party at Buckingham Palace…

I’ll let the images speak for themselves, but a quick word to all the grooms out there: When your gal dons likely the most expensive dress she will ever wear, it doesn’t hurt to put a little effort (and grooming) in to your own wedding day attire, mmmkay?

Lesson 6: Follow-up a grand entrance with a grand exit.

It was a tall order topping an entrance that included the unveiling of the most anticpated wedding gown in decades, but they pulled it off. Kate and Wills made a grand exit (and surprised us all) by departing from Buckingham Palace in a vintage Aston Martin decorated with balloons, ribbons and a license plate that read “JU5T WED” (courtesy of best man Prince Harry). Off they rode in to the royal sunset… On your big day, don’t bid your guests adieu from the back seat of your beat up Honda Civic. Make a more elegant and memorable exit in vintage wheels a la Kate and Wills. For inspiration, check out the sweet rides at Salt Lake City’s Something Vintage, Something Blue.

Lessons learned? Good, then class is dismissed!

What other fun details and great ideas did you take away from the Royal Wedding?

{Images: New York Magazine, The Daily Mail, News of the World}