Much before India became obsessed with the Big Fat Indian Wedding, there was a whole generation who were fascinated with the fairy-tale Charles-Di wedding. WeddingSutra gets well-known Wedding Planners to talk about their love affair with the most beautiful white wedding.
“In between class breaks we’d see photos of the fairy tale wedding”
Gurleen Puri, Mumbai
Gurleen excitedly recalls all the conversations and picture-sharing in her class, at Modern School in Vasant Vihar, Delhi: “We would chat at length about Diana, imagining what it must be like to lead the royal life; who can forget her beautiful hand bouquet, it was so heavy I’m sure she experienced much pain, yet she looked super-graceful! We couldn’t stop looking at the pictures of so many stylish royals in elegant gowns accessorised with beautiful pearls. One classmate brought the Vogue special that featured the wedding, and what a nice feeling it was to touch Vogue.”
At that time, Gurleen had no idea that there existed a profession called wedding planner, but flowers always fascinated her most: “I would look at the floral decor and all the little details at the functions and sit-down dinners first, and only after that I’d notice the clothes and jewellery.”
“Diana’s gorgeous oval blue sapphire ring with diamonds, I got an identical ring.”
Rimjhim Bhagchandani, Dubai:
I was so excited about the upcoming Charles-Diana wedding, a little apprehensive too since I was not sure if it would be telecast live in Dubai. Fortunately, our local TV Channel 33 did not disappoint. I can’t forget the day, it was like a fantasy– Diana looked so innocent, she smiled a lot but her Prince looked grumpy and unhappy (I didn’t think too much of it then, presuming protocol expected him to behave that way). I couldn’t stop admiring Diana’s iconic 18-carat sapphire surrounded by 14 brilliant-cut diamonds. I got an identical one made (though it was nowhere as gorgeous as hers). I still have a picture of her hand bouquet and I’ve designed similar bouquets for many brides.”
“Diana was the Queen of Style”
Vithika Agarwal, Bangalore
I was very young when Charles-Di wed, but some of the images are etched clearly in my mind. I think it was the first white wedding I witnessed and as I grew older, thanks to Hollywood films, my love and fascination for white weddings grew. There was something about white weddings—they seemed more romantic, perfect and intimate. But no other bride in white caught my attention like Diana—she was truly the Queen of Style!
Ironically, my British husband was fascinated by Indian weddings. So we didn’t have a church wedding but a fun, colourful and traditional Indian shaadi!
“London looked most beautiful on 29th July, 1981”
Dinaz Noria, Hyderabad
Dinaz worked with British Airways as a stewardess before she embarked on her career in decor & wedding planning, and she was in London on the landmark date. She says: “There was magic in the air, like all hotels, even the hotel where I was staying was specially decorated and on the menu was a sumptuous wedding feast. While I was glued to the TV I would keep looking out of the window, to see the happy crowds on the street. I bought the famous ceramic plates with the couple’s image as memorabilia for my little sister and cousins, and for many months I preserved my favourite photographs in a special file—the one I liked best is of Prince Charles kissing his bride on the balcony of Buckingham Palace.”