The past year has been entirely filled with the glamorous big days of celebrities and royals. From the royal wedding of Meghan Markle (we’re still not over it) to Italian influencer Chiara Ferragni, the styles and grandeur of each occasion have been something all their own. Inspired and absolutely starstruck, we reached out to two local wedding experts, Ramsey Sims of I Do Bridal Couture and Alli Sims of Alli Sims Weddings and Events, to learn how to bring these looks to life, in the real world, with a realistic budget.
Read on to see their suggestions based on each star-studded wedding day:
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry
Instantly iconic was the moment when Meghan Markle and Prince Harry emerged beneath a towering floral arch following their ceremony at St. George’s Chapel in Windsor. The lush backdrop offered the perfect scenery for the couple’s debut, while also delivering a dose of dreamy romance, ideal for the wedding of the much-sought-after prince. However, while the look is something most brides dream of, the cost is likely not. Alli says there’s a way to get the same feel without the same price, thankfully.
“Pick a location with a tall, lush green background and bring in an arch to put in front of it, or no arch at all,” she says. “Have a florist just add flowers! You will get the beautiful effect for a lot less. Kali Marionneaux at The Plantation Florist is my favorite and makes amazing arches.”
In contrast to the blooming arch, Markle’s bouquet was understated, with a cluster of baby’s breath in place of roses, lilies or other usual bridal favorites.
“Any florist can recreate Markle’s bouquet if that is a look you want,” explains Alli. “Just let them know you want something small and not overpowering. At the end of the day, you are the focal point, not the bouquet.”
Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank
When Princess Eugenie of York stepped out to wed Jack Brooksbank last October, the public was shocked at the absence of not only her veil, but the back of her gown. Eugenie later revealed that her choice to opt out of a veil and modest back was actually to display the scars that were left behind after a back surgery when she was 12, making a statement about beauty standards and her role in redefining them.
“I think with a wedding, the most important part is being true to yourself and letting your personality shine,” says Ramsey. “Eugenie’s gown was a beautiful brocade fabric that more and more designers are including, like Lela Rose and Monique Lhullier. The style is really starting to make its way down to the South.”
In another bold statement, Eugenie accessorized her wedding look with an emerald tiara lent to her by her grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II.
“Emerald has always been one of my favorites,” Ramsey explains, noting that the gemstone is one of her daughter’s birthstones. “It’s a very classic way to make a statement and it’s so regal. We carry several jewelry designers who include emeralds in their earrings. But one of my favorite touches to add to a look is a subtle tiara. We carry one called the ‘Fleur’ crown by Amanda Judge. It makes brides look like modern-day princesses.”
Lady Gabriella Windsor and Thomas Kingston
The daughter of Prince and Princess Michael of Kent was no exception in the royal tradition of including a preschool class worth of children in her wedding party. We aren’t mad, though. There’s nothing cuter than kids in some traditional white.
With the recent closure of several of Baton Rouge’s more formal children’s stores, Ramsey says she noticed a need. I Do Bridal Couture is introducing brand-new outfit offerings for the smallest in the wedding party. The clothing is customizable and available with colored sashes to match any wedding color scheme.
“I’ve always wanted to carry flower girl and ring bearer outfits,” says Ramsey. “I want to help people bring the entire wedding look together, and that includes matching the kids’ outfits to the bride’s gown.”
Chiara Ferragni and Federico Leonardo “Fedez” Lucia
If you don’t know who Chiara is, we suggest you give her a follow on Instagram. She is the founder of the fashion blog The Blonde Salad, and she has made an empire via her online presence. So when she wed Italian rapper Fedez last September, it was sure to be an affair for the ages–or at least Instagram.
Her big day involved private planes, custom Dior gowns, a carnival complete with a ferris wheel, and so much more. However, while it’s easy to get caught up in the over-the-top, many of Chiara’s details are surprisingly attainable.
Her ceremony backdrop, which featured dangling flowers, is something Alli says isn’t all that hard to achieve, and has actually been part of several Southern weddings in the past.
“I have loved this trend for a long time,” says Alli. “I love anything pretty that appears to be floating. The hanging flower look is as easy as attaching flower heads to fishing wire and attaching above. Mix in floating globes that are filled with candles and flowers if you want to change it up a little.”
Chiara’s ceremony dress is a show-stopper, as it was created just for her by the House of Dior. The look featured a lace romper with a tulle skirt over top. Even Chiara’s reception gown was convertible, as she changed from a floor-length skirt, which she wore for dinner, to a cocktail-length skirt for the following reception carnival.
“It’s actually pretty easy to get two looks in one,” explains Ramsey. “All you have to do is pair a fitted gown with a tulle overskirt. I love this because then a bride can get the traditional and the fun. It’s especially good for a bride torn between two looks.”
Bear with us, we know the mascots are scary. However, the “Ferragnez” branding is a major element that Alli says is an easy way to make an entire wedding weekend feel pulled together.
“There are so many places you can do this based on your budget, from programs and koozies to lighting globes and the dance floor,” she says. “Want to go the extra mile? Go to your local printing company and have them print out a pretty fabric with your logo and turn it into a photo-booth backdrop.”
Priyanka Chopra and Nick Jonas
Who could forget Priyanka Chopra’s entrance to her Western ceremony? The Bollywood star made her way down an impossibly long aisle arm in arm with her mother, with a 75-foot veil trailing behind. With designated handlers just for the veil itself, as well as a chair layout to accommodate its width, the over-the-top choice puts all other veils to shame. However, Ramsey says if you are looking to make a similar impact, the solution is easier than you think.
“I love a longer veil that frames the train of the dress,” she says. “But one important thing to remember for a bride who really wants to make a statement is that you are the focal point of the wedding day. The details don’t have to be nearly as busy as you think. If you’re comfortable in what you’re wearing, you’ll shine.”
Sophie Turner and Joe Jonas
The last of the Jonas weddings was one that came as a surprise to most of their fans. However, for many, it was a welcome one. The pop idol and the Game of Thrones star tied the knot in Las Vegas’ iconic A Little White Wedding Chapel, complete with an Elvis impersonator, an all-star guest list and–believe it or not–ring pops.
And while pictures are scarce, despite the controversial filming of the ceremony by Diplo, Turner’s wedding jumpsuit has become a major talking point. Her casual-cool style is one that brides are sure to emulate for years to come–or until her next looks are revealed in the couple’s rumored formal ceremony later this summer.
Ramsey, who had her own wedding in the bright lights of Vegas, says the less traditional look is one that is rising in popularity, with more and more designers including jumpsuits, two-pieces and short dresses in their collections.
“I have to say, I’m partial to their wedding and style,” says Ramsey with a laugh. “Amsale and Theia are starting to include things like jumpsuits that appeal to more relaxed or non-traditional brides. But, even for girls who aren’t necessarily looking for that kind of thing, I always tell them to step outside of the box. Sometimes you like something you don’t think you will. Just give it a chance.”
Following the ceremony, the couple posed on a pastel pink classic car. Further pulling together the quintessential “Vegas” look, Alli notes that a car is an easy way to make an impact, especially if it’s the last image the guests are left with.
“If you know someone, ask to borrow a classic car,” Alli explains. “Or just rent one! Prices usually only run about $450 for a wedding exit.”
What was your favorite celebrity wedding this year? Let us know in the comments below, or tag us on Instagram and Facebook.