Kate, Zara or Charlene: Which royal bride wore it best?

Wednesday, August 3, 2011
Kate, Zara or Charlene: Which royal bride wore it best?
Prince William and Kate Middleton, Prince Albert and Charlene Wittstock and Mike Tindall and Zara Phillips.

To me, my mother had the perfect wedding dress. It was a dress I would have worn myself if I hadn't grown-up to tower over her, and a dress that in my mind, no-one else could top, until Catherine Middleton wore a better version of it on her wedding day.

When it comes to the competition of which princess wore the best dress in what will be remembered as the-year-of-the-royal-weddings, Catherine may have outshone both Charlene and Zara in a way all brides-to-be secretly dream of, but they weren't far behind.

In pictures: Zara Phillips marries Mike Tindall

While Charlene Wittstock's wedding dress was a demonstration in fantasy (her custom-made Giorgio Armani Privé silk dress took 2500 hours to create, with 40,000 Swarovski crystals, 20,000 mother-of-pearls and 30,000 gold stones all hand-stitched on), it was also a model of luxurious simplicity perfectly suited to compliment her athletic frame.

We all knew there would be the obvious comparisons with Grace Kelly, Charlene's late mother-in-law, which will undoubtedly continue throughout her reign as Her Serene Highness Princess of Monaco. However, Charlene seems to be taking to her new role — which requires constant camera-readiness — like like a duck to water.

In pictures: Prince William and Kate Middleton wed

Adapting her style from a nonchalant South African beach babe to an aptly attired royal consort and poised princess-to-be, she is successfully finding her own sense of style, which on her wedding day showed the world that you can be both athletic and elegant, without having to give either one up.

Zara Phillips settled on a more traditional gown made by the Queen's own couturier Stewart Parvin, and for a woman once dubbed the royal rebel with some very questionable outfits to match, she looked wonderfully grown up with just the right amount of elegant sophistication.

Also an athlete, Zara's corset on her simple and romantic dress gave her a small waist, while her broad shoulders were softened by the sheer silk tulle straps.

In pictures: Prince Albert marries Charlene Wittstock

These princesses not only delivered wedding dresses that exceeded anyone's expectations, they pulled off a fairytale wedding wearing gowns fitting their vastly different personalities and body shapes — something other soon-to-be-brides should take close note of.

Your say: Did you prefer Kate Middleton, Zara Phillips or Charlene Wittstock's wedding dresses?

Video: Zara Phillips talks about her royal wedding

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