Over 750 million people worldwide tuned in to watch the July 1981 wedding of Princess Diana and Prince Charles, with many in the States waking up before dawn to see the nuptials live. It’s been called “the wedding of the century” and the ethereal photos of Princess Diana in her David and Elizabeth Emanuel wedding dress remain key images of the decade in which they were taken…and that decade was the 1980s…which is why the bridesmaids dresses were more akin to cream puffs than clothing.
India Hicks, a cousin of Prince Charles who was 12 when she stood as one of Diana’s bridesmaids, recently recalled the experience in an interview with Insider. “It was a time and place and a moment in fashion in the 1980s. So it was voluptuous and over the top, and drama everywhere,” Hicks said of the floofy fashion.
She continued: “I understand that those dresses were so befitting to the era. However, if you were a tomboy like me... when you are asked to be a bridesmaid, you are proud and delighted, but you are a little alarmed at being asked to wear a frilly dress, as you can imagine.”
It isn’t the first time Hicks has spoken publicly about her experience in the most-watched wedding of the time. Hicks, a model, designer, and author who lives in the Bahamas with her husband and children, said in her book India Hicks: Island Style, which came out in 2015, that the wedding belied the turmoil of the relationship it supposedly celebrated. “I think at the time, everybody thought it was this fairytale — nobody understood what was to come."
She also described the event as “one of my worst hair days ever,” though you have to hand it to Diana—she was setting the flower crown trend decades before its mid-2010s Coachella heyday.
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