Stars, they’re just like us, right?! Right. In the last year, some of our favorite models, influencers, actors, and royals took on the roles of bride and groom—and oh, how they shined! Their Insta-worthy flowers, gorgeous gowns, and—yes—massive diamond tiaras (hey, Meghan!) inspired us, but what we really applauded was how these high-profile pairs said “I do” in ways that felt, well, real. Each created new traditions and added truly special touches.
A Wedding Worth a Kazillion Likes
Our cover girl, Chiara Ferragni, and rapper Federico Leonardo Lucia, a.k.a. Fedez, wowed the world with an epic three-day celebration in September. The event’s hashtag #theferragnez has since generated more than 27,000 Instagram shares—thanks to highly customized, unexpected elements (and a social push by the bride’s 14.7 million followers). Our favorite ideas to copy? The pop-up card invite, wedding cake suspended in midair, and photo-ready ceremony exit courtesy of a colorful smoke bomb release. Clearly, the Italian couple had fun with the planning process. That, plus two custom Dior gowns, bridesmaids in pale pink Alberta Ferretti dresses, a cave of twinkly lights, a full-on carnival after-party—and their adorable baby boy, Leone—made this wedding one of the year’s most epic.
Keep it Personal
VIP couples in 2018 curated every element—even if it meant a compromise to achieve the result. Use some of the following ideas as inspo for personal touches at your own nuptials:
Gwyneth Paltrow and Brad Falchuk
In September, Gwyneth Paltrow and Brad Falchuk had chef Mario Carbone cater their reception since they had gone to one of his restaurants on their first date. They also served his and hers cake favors because they couldn’t agree on one and created a hashtag (#thefaltrows) that combined their names.
Aidy Bryant and Conner O’Malley
Comedian Aidy Bryant, perhaps unsurprisingly, made guests laugh during her vows to Conner O’Malley in April. (He apparently cracked a few jokes too.)
Rose Leslie and Kit Harington
Rose Leslie’s father wore a Scottish kilt to walk her down the aisle at her wedding to Game of Thrones costar Kit Harington in June. And the couple also referenced their hit HBO TV show in their invitations.
Joe Zee and Rob Younkers
Joe and Rob called on a relative to officiate. They also skipped a wedding cake in lieu of festive and quirky desserts like mini ice cream cones and personalized cookies.
Be True to Yourself
The year’s two British royal couples surprised fans with meaningful moments while still adhering to (very strict) royal etiquette.
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry
Meghan Markle wore custom Givenchy to walk herself halfway down the aisle to marry Prince Harry at St. George’s Chapel, where a choir sang an emotional rendition of Ben E. King’s “Stand by Me.”
Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank
In October, Jack Brooksbank melted hearts by putting on his eyeglasses to watch Princess Eugenie make her grand entrance. She stunned in a low-back gown by Peter Pilotto and Christopher De Vos and proudly showed off her scars from a scoliosis surgery. You go girl!
See more: All of the Celebrity Couples Who Have Tied the Knot in 2018…So Far!
Model Karlie Kloss and Joshua Kushner surprised the world by marrying on October 18, a Thursday afternoon, just three months after announcing their engagement.
Amy Schumer and Chris Fischer
Amy and Chris also shocked fans with a short engagement and a surprise wedding. The couple asked guests to donate to charities in lieu of gifts.
A version of this story originally appeared in the February/March 2019 issue of Brides, on stands starting December 18.