By Darcy Miller
(CBS) -- In keeping with the elegant formality of Westminster Abbey, a team of us from Martha Stewart Weddings spent the wee hours of Friday morning in the aptly named Royal Suite at The Plaza Hotel here in New York City.
As we blogged, tweeted, and watched the ceremony unfold, we were struck by how deeply personal it was. William and Kate clearly wanted their time in the spotlight to reflect who they are, and in that sense, they're no different than any other bride and groom.
To help you give your wedding the regal touch, take a cue from Britain's new royal couple as you plan:
Decide first what kind of wedding you'd like to have, and then search for a location that reflects it. Since the venue dictates the formality of your wedding, it's important to spend time on this decision and visit a variety of places. Though you can't exactly get married at Westminster Abbey and party the night away in Buckingham Palace, a cathedral ceremony and ballroom reception will give off the same grand, timeless vibe.
Kate's gown was perfect for her - not only because it was absolutely stunning, but also because it reflected her personal style to a T. Like always, Kate looked elegant and traditional, with just a hint of modern flair. If you simply can't wait for the Kate-inspired gowns that are sure to come, we've seen very similar silhouettes from Romona Keveza and Monique Lluillier. Another great way to achieve her lace-sleeved look is to wear a lace bolero over a strapless gown. You'll have two looks in one!
Kate's Robinson Pelham earrings, a gift from her parents, were the perfect complement to her dress' deep V-neck and slight collar. The acorn and oak leaves on the earrings has special meaning for Kate, as they repeated the imagery of her family's coat of arms. As for that tiara? It was , courtesy of the Queen's personal collection. To personalize your look, consider having a piece of jewelry custom made by one of the vendors on Etsy, or look to sites such as Tiger Lilly Jewelry for a regal tiara.
Kate's veil was classic and subdued - she looked like every bit the princess bride. But perhaps most importantly, it didn't obscure her dress or face. Its length matched the formality of the train, and several designers including Brides Head Revisited and Jennifer Leigh Veils have similar lace-trimmed options.
When choosing a bridesmaid's dress for Pippa, Kate clearly took her sister's personality into account. We hear that Pippa is fun and outgoing, and her dress was both sleek and flirty. Even if you're not keen on the idea of a bridal party all in white (though we happen to think it's incredibly chic), Pippa's sheath gown with its cowl neck, cap sleeves and lace detail would be amazing in any color. Check out these styles from J.Crew and David Meister.
With the help of a few soaring trees, Kate turned turned into a lavish English garden. To create that garden fairy tale at your own wedding, create an arbor using green branches of leaves or buy or rent trees from a local nursery. After the ceremony, follow the royal couple's lead and arrange to have them planted in a site that has special significance to your relationship.
Kate and William certainly know how to make an entrance (and an exit, for that matter). Kate and her dad rolled up to the ceremony in a Rolls Royce, the newlyweds took a horse-drawn carriage to Buckingham palace, and there was nothing cuter than seeing them zip away from the palace in that decked-out convertible. Vehicle rentals have become a popular trend in the bridal market, and these days you can rent everything from a carriage to a vintage car.
GIVE YOUR GROOM(SMEN) A ROYAL MAKEOVER
If your groom is in the military, lucky you - he can wear his uniform. If not, morning dress is the traditional British formal attire for daytime and royal weddings. Be like William and have your attire custom made or go royal for the day and rent a dashing tuxedo.