Meredith Sweetpea Cited in Nationally-Trending Article on Fascinators


Meghan-Markle-fascinator

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Miss Meredith Sweetpea was pleased to have been cited in a nationally-trending article on May 16, 2018 titled: “Royal Wedding: What is a fascinator and where can I get one?” by Debbie Lord, Cox Media Group. In the article, Lord refers to the rules for wearing fascinators as posted in our own extremely-popular blog post titled: “How to Wear a Fascinator.”

As any good royal watcher knows, hats or fascinators are required headwear at any royal wedding in England. This gives us many opportunities to view the stunning fashions that will appear in the wedding venue and among the many people hoping to catch a glimpse of the royal couple.

Fascinators can be worn during the wedding ceremony since they are small enough not to impair the view of people sitting behind. Weating a large hat would be impolite. Fascinators can also be worn the entire day, both inside and out, as they are part of the entire outfit.

Fascinators are generally about four to five inches across at the base, and are either attached to a headband or a hair clip of some sort, and perched atop the head.  A headband itself is not considered an appropriate head covering. A hat would cover the entire head.

Why Do Royals Wear Hats and Fascinators for Formal Occasions?

“When it comes to a special occasion in British society, the special occasion is not complete without a hat,” said Hilary Alexander, fashion director at The Daily Telegraph. No formal attire is complete without a hat, no matter whether you are a royal or a member of the public.

black-fascinatorAccording to the BBC, it is part of royal protocol to wear a hat to all official occasions.

Need a lovely fascinator?

Browse through hundreds of fascinator styles here.

 

 

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British Royal Wedding Required Traditions


With all the buzz about England’s next Royal Wedding between Prince Harry and Ms. Meghan Markle, Miss Meredith Sweetpea’s mind has turned to romance. There are so many things to consider when planning a wedding. Especially so when marrying into the royal family.

In British tradition, there are a number of age-old royal wedding requirements.

  • The monarch must permit the marriage in writing for the six heirs closest in line to the throne.
  • A formal engagement announcement must be made by Kensington Palace, followed by a public photo session and joint interview. Prince Harry and Ms. Markle posed for the press in the Sunken Gardens at Kensington Palace.
  • The king or queen is the Head of the Protestant Anglican Church of England, therefore they and anyone they marry must be a member of the Church of England or they will lose the right to the throne. Ms. Markle will be baptized into the Church of England prior to the wedding.
  • Royal brides must wear a white gown, and customary lace, ever since Queen Victoria wore a white gown at her wedding to Prince Albert in 1840.
  • Royal grooms must wear a military uniform. Prince Albert was the one to start this trend.
  • In Queen Victoria’s bridal bouquet was a sprig of myrtle, expected to harbinger love and good fortune int he marriage. Victoria received the myrtle bush from Albert’s grandmother and planted it on the Isle of Wight. Sprigs of myrtle have been provided from this bush for royal weddings ever since.
  • The bride must wear a tiara. Princess Diana wore a Spencer family tiara for her wedding to Prince Charles. Catherine Middleton borrowed the Cartier “Halo” tiara that was originally given by King George VI to his wife, Queen Elizabeth, then given to Princess Elizabeth on her 18th birthday.
  • The bride’s wedding band must be made from the gold taken from a specific mine in Wales.
  • The bride must lay her wedding bouquet at the Tomb of the Unknown Warrior after the ceremony. Every royal bride has done so since the former Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon following her wedding to Prince Albert.
  • There are generally two receptions: one between 11 am and noon with a lunch or brunch, and another in the evening with dinner and dancing.
  • No shellfish can be served at a royal wedding. Or garlic.
  • The wedding cakes must include a fruitcake.

–Excerpted from The Knot, “Will Meghan Markle and Prince Harry Break Any of These Royal Wedding Traditions?” by Maggie Seaver.

Wedding Omens and Predictions


Queenb-Victoria-Orange-BlossomsFor centuries, people declared that there were omens that could predict weddings and happy marriages. Here are some of the ones the Victorians believed, and some we still believe today:

You (or someone you know) will be married soon when:

  • A chicken enters your house with a straw in i ts mouth, which it leaves behind.
  • A mockingbird flies over your house.
  • A white dove comes near your house.
  • A spider descends from the ceiling and “dances” up and down.
  • A cow moos at night.

Your marriage will be happy if:

  • You feed a cat at of one of your old shoes just before you marry.
  • A cat sneezes in front of the (or your) bride on the day before the wedding.
  • Either party dreams about the wedding day.
  • You marry in June.
  • Your wedding ceremony lasts between a half hour and an hour (the rising hand of the clock denotes rising fortune.)
  • You marry in the afternoon.
  • You marry on a beautiful day.
  • A ray of sunshine falls on you as you leave the church.
  • It snows on your wedding day.
  • You see a lamb or dove on the way to the church.
  • A flock of white birds flies directly over you on the way to the wedding.
  • You carry bread in your pocket and throw it away on your wedding day.
  • A spider crawls on the wedding dress just before the ceremony.
  • The bride wears earrings during the ceremony.
  • The bridge has her hair done and veil put on by a happily-married woman.
  • A new dime is placed in the bride’s left shoe just before she walks down the aisle.
  • Orange blossoms are used in the wedding decorations.
  • You carry a pinch of salt to the church.
  • The bridegroom carries a horseshoe in his pocket during the ceremony.
  • The bride cries on her wedding day.
  • You both step into, and out of, the church on your right foot first.

There are also don’ts that you should heed:

  • Don’t get married to someone born in the same month as you.
  • Dont’t get married on your birthday.
  • Don’t get married during Lent.
  • Don’t postpone your wedding.
  • Don’t let the groom see the bride in her wedding dress before the ceremony.
  • Don’t let the bride wear pearls (each pearl represents a tear).
  • Don’t get married in a church with bats (if it flies over you, it will bring bad luck.)
  • Finally, don’t believe everything you read!

Whew, with all of these things to worry about, it’s a wonder people get married at all!

–Excerpted from “Everything Romantic: A Book for Lovers” by Michael Newman

Training for a Victorian Marriage | Victorian Weddings


image of Victorian woman teaching sewing to young Victorian womanIt’s June again and Miss Meredith Sweetpea is preparing for two weddings in her own family. As she looks at her niece and nephew who are each getting married, she ruminates on how little training we receive nowadays for marriage. We are supposed to meet “the one,” fall in love, hold a big wedding and live happily ever after.

In Victorian times more attention was paid to preparing women for marriage.

Victorian women were trained from the time they were little girls to become a Continue reading

Can I Wear a Fascinator at My Wedding? | Meredith Sweetpea | Manners & Etiquette


Wear a fascinator at your wedding instead of a veil or tiara.

Yes, you can wear a fascinator to a wedding–whether it is your own wedding or you are attending one. With the popularity of this fashion accessory rising, more and more women are choosing the decorative hairpiece over the traditional long veil or tiara.

Wedding of Prince Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles.

Even Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall wore a fascinator at her own wedding to Prince Charles on 9 April 2005.

A wedding fascinator most likely features lace or a veil that extends across the forehead or down the side of the head when worn. It can also feature flowers (silk or real), feathers, Swarovski crystals, ribbons, or even jewels.

Fascinators for the Bride

What’s nice about a fascinator is that it can remain in place throughout the event, whereas a traditional veil is generally removed or bunched up for the sake of mobility. Miss Meredith Sweetpea had a cathedral length veil at her own wedding, but removed the long veil and replaced it with a fingtertip-length veil for the reception. With a veiled fascinator, you can wear your divine creation all day or evening.

Dos for a Wedding Fascinator

Love in The Victorian Years, 1837-1901


Until recently, Queen Victoria was the longest-reigning monarch, holding reign for 63 years, 216 days, from June 20, 1837 to her death on January 22, 1901. During her reign, the period was known as the Victorian Era, and continued past her death until about 1912. Miss Meredith Sweetpea thinks of all the changes that Queen Victoria must have seen in her 81 years.

Dating in the Victorian Era

Dating in the 18th century was called courting, or informally, sparking, keeping company, carrying on, coming to call or cavorting. Serious courting with the intent to marry, was called a Courtship. During the courting period, women rarely Continue reading

Victorian Weddings: Colors for the Wedding Gown


Brides have not always worn white for their weddings. In fact, it wasn’t until Queen Victoria’s wedding in 1840 that the white wedding gown became a tradition.

16th and 17th century wedding dresses

For example, in the 16th and 17th centuries, teenage girls married wearing pale green dresses: a sign of fertility. A girl in her 20s was considered “mature,” and she wore a brown dress. “Older” women wore black dresses.

Only poor girls wore white

From the early Saxon times to the 18th century, only the poorest girls wore white, symbolizing that she brought nothing to the marriage. Other brides wore their “best dress.”

The wedding gown’s color foretold the bride’s future

Brides thought that the color of their gown would foretell their future life, and here is what they thought each color represented: Continue reading

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