The marriage of Prince William and Kate Middleton was one of the most recent royal weddings. Kate did not fail to impress the whole word with her natural gracefulness. At the same time, her choice of dress underlined a simple yet tasteful style. As for Prince William, his dignifying posture wore the Guard of Honour Order officer’s uniform impeccably. However, it was a long time ago since we saw a blue blood or any other classic wedding. In the spirit of a life event that causes a tear trickling down anyone’s cheeks, let’s dive in a retrospective and be truly inspired by the history’s most elaborate and expensive wedding dresses. The following ten designs are dreams of any princess coming true.
1. Princess Diana’s wedding gown, 1981, cost unknown
Princess Diana married Prince Charles in 1981 in a wedding gown designed by David and Elizabeth Emanuel. It is made of antique lace, ivory silk taffeta, and more than 10,000 pearls and sequins. The fabric for the gown is hand-woven, and the lace is sewn with gold thread. The elegant gown’s best feature, many believe, is around 25 feet train. The exact monetary value of this spectacular gown is unknown, but its appeal is timeless and priceless. It’s what little girls(and grown women, for that matter) around the world picture when they think of their dream wedding dress.
2. Grace Kelly, 1956, cost unknown
In 1956, Philadelphia-girl Grace Kelly married Monaco’s Prince Rainier wearing a wedding gown designed by Helen Rose. It was made with 100 yards of silk net and 25 yards of silk taffeta and features a fitted bodice, round collar, and full skirt, designed using century-old lace and peau de soie fabric. Its cost is unknown, but it is thought by many to be the most beautiful wedding gown ever made. Grace Kelly looked stunning in her mermaid gown.
3. Diamond Wedding Gown, 2006 – $12 million USD
Renee Strausse (the owner of an exclusive, expensive wedding salon in Beverly Hills) and the famed jewelry designer Martin Katz of Martin Katz Jewelers combined to create a wedding gown in 2006 that would come to be known as the Diamond Wedding Gown. Its worth is $12 million USD, making it the most expensive wedding gown in the world to date. It is created from a staggering 150 karats of diamonds. While it is a brideless dress, this impressive creation would have looked like one in a million in a summer wedding.
4. Melania Knauss, 2005, cost unknown
Melania Knauss married billionaire Donald Trump in 2005 in a gorgeous John Galliano gown. It possesses a 13 feet train and is made of 300 feet of white duchess satin. Featured on the dress are 1500 pearls and crystal rhinestones. Melania had to be in shape to wear this heavy gown, which itself weighed 50 pounds alone!
5. Yumi Katsura, 2006 – $8.5 million USD
Japanese bridal designer Yumi Katsura is a Japanese wedding gown designer who created a dress in 2006 that is valued at $8.5 million USD. It contains an 8.8 karat green diamond, a rare 5 karat white gold diamond, 1000 pearls, and zari embroidery stitched onto silk and satin. At the time, it was known as the world’s most expensive wedding dress, until it was bested in this category by the ultimate debut of the Strauss-Katz.
6. Catherine Zeta-Jones, 2000, unknown cost
When actress Catherine Zeta-Jones married actor Michael Douglas in 2000, she wore an ivory sheath wedding gown designed by Christian Lacroix. It was beaded duchess satin with a fishtail Chantilly lace train. Stardust accented the gown’s low cut bodice for extra sparkle. While its value is unknown, the entire wedding event cost a reported $1.5 million USD, so most likely the gown was quite expensive as well. Its core feature was its beautiful six feet train.
7. Imperial Pearl Syndicate, 1950s, $100,000 USD
This simple dress from the early 1950s cost just $100,000 USD. It is not considered wildly expensive by today’s standards, but it’s still expensive enough (and more than most brides would care to spend)! It was created by the Imperial Pearl Syndicate and made from a silk net and satin material covered in 100,000 cultured pearls. The dress, which weighed 27 pounds, was modeled by 1950s celebrities including Nina Foch and Gloria Swanson.
8. Victoria Beckham, 1999, cost unknown
Vera Wang created the beautiful wedding frock worn by Victoria Beckham at her 1999 wedding to soccer star David Beckham. The cost of this wedding gown is unknown, but its beauty is easily apparent. The dress is strapless and made of champagne-colored satin. Since the Beckham wedding, there have been many less-expensive “knock-offs” of this particular dress sold to brides around the world. There is no wonder to that as this romantic look is a sure hit at any type of ball.
9. Peacock Feather Wedding Dress, Vera Wang, 2009 – $1.5 million USD
Can you imagine a wedding dress made entirely of male peacock feathers? This one falls into the expensive yet not quite so beautiful category. Designed by Vera Wang, it was her most expensive wedding dress, valued at $1.5 million USD. It contains 2009 male peacock feathers, to commemorate the year 2009 in which it was designed. However, this dress is no longer Wang’s most expensive frock. She claims that the gown she made for Jennifer Lopez’s marriage to Ben Affleck (that never happened) was more expensive than this famous yet absolutely hideous peacock gown.
10. Mauro Adami, 2008, $380,000 USD
Italian designer Mauro Adami designed this wedding gown as part of the Domo Adami collection in 2008. This luxurious wedding dress is made of 40 meters of platinum-colored fabric. It was sewn with platinum and silk thread, and valued at $380,000 USD (or, to put it into perspective, about ten times what the normal American bride might spend on her dress).
These expensive wedding dresses might never get the chance to be admired again by hundreds of guests. However, they already went down in history as time capsules with aesthetic values of those vintage times. In today’s world, they speak of long past fairy tales, and their beauty is melancholic. There is nothing casual about them, but the epitome of sophistication.