The eyes of the world were on the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge when they said ‘I do’ on 29 April 2011 and then again when the Duke and Duchess of Sussex got married on 19 May 2018. The royals were joined by many celebrity guests, thousands of fans gathered on the streets and millions watched on at home. But there were a few blushes for the royal wedding guests when these wedding etiquette rules were broken – did you spot any?
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David Beckham moved his medal to abide by royal protocol
David Beckham has been given an OBE by The Queen, which grants him permission to wear his medal at official royal occasions. The footballer took up this opportunity at the 2011 nuptials of Prince William and Kate Middleton. He looked incredibly suave in a Ralph Lauren morning suit and only eagle-eyed viewers would have noticed his etiquette slip-up.
When he arrived at Westminster Abbey, he wore his OBE medal on his right lapel, but traditionally the piece should be worn on the left. A few television commentators did spot the faux pas and someone else must have too – because before the ceremony began, David was seen with it switched to his left-hand side.
Victoria Beckham wore skyscraper heels to Prince William and Catherine’s wedding
David wasn’t the only Beckham to stray from the rules during Prince William and Kate Middleton’s big day. Despite being a fashion designer herself, it was Victoria Beckham‘s outfit that broke with tradition. Royal wedding etiquette suggests that heels should be no higher than four inches. However, the former Spice Girl chose to wear sky-high stilettos with her chic outfit – having to face the task of navigating the uneven floor of Westminster Abbey.
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Serena Williams paired her evening outfit with trainers
Tennis star and long-time friend of Meghan Markle, Serena Williams attended Prince Harry and Meghan’s wedding day in 2018 – and while in the daytime she dressed in accordance to all of the etiquette rules, she did reveal a more casual addition for the evening reception.
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Taking to Instagram to show off her second dress of the day, Serena shared a video of herself walking towards the wedding transport to whisk her and other guests to Frogmore House. The candid clip revealed that she was wearing a pair of trainers underneath her floor-length Valentino gown for the post-ceremony party.
Perhaps if Serena would have known that the bride would be providing slippers at the reception for guests, she would have held out a little longer in her heels.
Chloe Madeley had bare shoulders in the church despite it being frowned upon
Royal enthusiasts may already know that outfit protocol stipulates that guests’ shoulders must be covered during a church service. As Chloe Madeley entered the venue, she was pictured wearing a strappy gown, with her shoulders clearly on display. However, it transpires that this was not a deliberate breach of the rules and that Chloe’s faux pas was a pure error.
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Richard and Judy’s daughter spoke out on Lorraine to explain that she had gotten too hot on the coach ride to the church and removed her jacket, and then forgot it when she departed the vehicle. She said: “[I thought] it’s fine, it’s not a big deal, nobody will care. Yes, people definitely cared. People were like, ‘You’re offending the House of the Lord, I was like, ‘Oh my god, oh my god, I did not need a religious war’. But, you know, it’s OK, lesson learned.”
Pippa Middleton wore white on her sister’s wedding day
Wearing white to a wedding is of course a fashion faux pas everyone is familiar with. However, Kate Middleton chose to do away with tradition when she selected a white Maid of Honour dress for her sister Pippa Middleton to wear on the day. There is also another unwritten wedding rule which says you are never to upstage the bride. The dress gained a lot of attention from the press and on-lookers – partly due to its colour, but also due to its form-fitting cut.
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Royal wedding guest Trioian Bellisario didn’t wear closed-in shoes
Trioian Bellisario attended Harry and Meghan’s Windsor wedding with Patrick J. Adams and they both knew Meghan from her acting days on Suits. The actress made an outfit faux pas when she decided to wear open-toe shoes with her outfit, as it is recommended that royals and guests wear enclosed heels – even if they have a lovely pedicure!
Meghan’s friend Jacinda Barrett couldn’t resist snapping a selfie
Another one of Meghan’s former Suits co-stars, Jacinda Barrett was seen to be breaking an unwritten rule of royal protocol. Selfies are frowned upon at such a formal event, but she took to Instagram to upload a selfie of her and her fellow American friends on a coach on the way to the event.
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