Princess Madeleine reveals lavish royal wedding details
Just three weeks lie between Princess Madeleine and her fairytale wedding to her handsome fiancé and financier Chris O'Neill on 8 June.
According to the stunning bride-to-be, the ceremony – which will take place in Madeleine's homeland, more precisely in the Royal Chapel at the Royal Palace of Stockholm – will be an afternoon occasion, kicking off at 4pm.
There will still be plenty of grand royal fanfare. Once the ceremony concludes, a 21-gun salute will be fired at five second intervals from Skeppsholmen, one of the islands of Stockholm.
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A reception will follow in Drottningholm Palace – "something that makes me happy and that means a lot to me, because I was born and raised there," says Madeleine.
The Princess and her new husband will later celebrate their wedding with a royal gala dinner at the Royal Palace, the family's favourite place for such grand events. No fewer than 350 guests will attend, including the Earl and Countess of Wessex who will enjoy the event in the Queen's place.
Exquisite culinary delights are promised on the menu, with catering from Swedish Michelin-starred chef Mathias Dahlgren.
Princess Madeleine's best-kept secret of the day so far is her wedding dress. But it looks likely that she will follow in her mother's footsteps to walk down the aisle in an internationally recognised brand – her mother chose world-renowned Dior and all eyes are on fashion maestro Valentino for Madeleine's fairytale creation.
Unlike her sister the future Queen Victoria, who chose a modest Swedish designer Par Engshen for her wedding gown, Madeleine has more freedom and could even abandon protocol for her big day, though she has chosen to follow it. Only time will tell if she opts for a tiara and veil handed down from generations before her.
The perfect end to the fairtale wedding will come when the doors to Drottningholm Palace's magnificent apartments open to guests.
The official residence of the King and Queen – one of the largest palaces in Europe decorated in baroque style – boasts seven floors, more than 600 bedrooms and nine glorious ballrooms. The dinner will be held here, along with the dance which will take place in The White Sea Hall.
Although she calls America home, Madeleine, 30, will continue to maintain her place in line to the throne, the Royal Palace has confirmed. She is currently fourth in line of succession and holds the titles Princess Madeleine of Sweden and Duchess of Hälsingland and Gästrikland. Upon marriage, her husband Chris will receive a title.
"He is a lovely, kind person and we wish them all of the happiness in the world in the future. We are very happy", said the King and Queen of Sweden of the new addition to their family.
Princess Madeleine has suggested that well wishers who want to give gifts instead make a donation to the World Childhood Foundation – the charity founded by her mother and for which the Princess works in New York.
The couple became engaged last October. Madeleine said that when Chris asked her to marry him it was "very romantic and intimate", and that he made a nod to tradition by first asking permission from her father King Carl XVI Gustaf.