Princess Madeleine Marries Christopher O’Neill
Princess Madeleine of Sweden yesterday married Mr Christopher O’Neill in a ceremony at the Palace Chapel in Stockholm.
The day began around 3pm local time, when guests began arriving at the Chapel. Royals on the guest list included the Crown Prince Couples of Denmark, Luxembourg and Norway, Princess Charlene of Monaco, Princess Takamado of Japan, and the children of the King of Greece. Other guests included the CEO of Swedish fashion brand H&M, Valentino Garavani and Swedish golfer Jesper Parnevik.
Members of the bride and groom’s immediate family made their entrance with a short time to go before the bride made her appearance. A large surprise of the day was when Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel arrived with their daughter, Estelle. There had been speculation earlier in the week as to whether the fifteen month old would be attending the wedding, and a tiny little chair in the front row of the Chapel gave away a big hint that, yes, she would be. Crown Princess Victoria also surprised by wearing the late Princess Lillian’s Laurel Wreath Tiara.
Just before 4pm, singing children from a Stockholm music school entered the Chapel and formed a guard along the aisle, before Princess Madeleine arrived on the arm of her father. She was wearing a wedding gown designed by Valentino Garavani, featuring a short-sleeved, wide-neck bodice, a wide ball skirt and four metre train, all covered in ivory Chantilly lace. Her veil was not the Swedish heirloom veil originally belonging to Queen Sofia, but was six metres long and made of silk organza. The veil was anchored by the diamond Modern Fringe Tiara, a private piece of the Royal Family. It had orange blossoms around the base, and the Princess wore a piece of traditional myrtle in the centre of her hairdo. Madeleine carried a simple bouquet of white roses, lilies of the valley and myrtle from Sofiero.
As he waited for his bride to make her way up the aisle, Christopher fought back tears – the emotion of the day would continue throughout the ceremony and afterwards for the groom, whose beaming smile rarely left his face. The groom wore the Knight Commander cross of the Order of the Polar Star around his neck, he had been awarded the order two days prior by King Carl XVI Gustaf.
The majority of the ceremony was given in English, officiated by the Chief Court Chaplain of the Royal Court, Bishop Emeritus Lars-Göran Lönnermark, and the Vicar of the Royal Court, Court Chaplain Michael Bjerkhagen. A sibling from each side of the family gave a reading – Crown Princess Victoria and Countess Natascha Abensperg und Traun – gave readings, while music was performed by Marie Frederiksson (from Roxette), who sang Ännu doftar kärlek, and Peter Jöback, who sung The First Time I Ever Saw Your Face.
Following the ceremony, Madeleine and Chris went outside the Palace to greet well-wishers, and provided them with three wedding kisses – and a fist-pump from the groom – to cheer about. It was then back inside for official photographs to be taken before the bridal couple headed off on their cortege through Stockholm’s streets while their guests made their way to the Riddarholmen to board boats to travel across to Drottningholm Palace for the reception.
King Carl Gustaf and Queen Silvia hosted the private reception at the Palace, which saw no media present inside the festivities. However, some guests let slip some details on their Twitter accounts – Jesper Parnevik spoke of Chris’s speech which “made everybody cry” (details came out that the speech included how much Chris’s late father Paul would have loved Madeleine), there were samba dancers as entertainment, and a macaron tower wedding cake.
The party lasted well into the wee hours of the morning, with guests leaving the Palace even as late as 5am.
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Tagged Christopher O'Neill, Modern Fringe Tiara, Order of the Polar Star, Princess Madeleine of Sweden, Royal Orders, Swedish Royal Wedding 2013, Valentino.