Photo credit: Walter McBride/Corbis
Following her recent appearances on Good Morning America, AOL, and Entertainment Tonight, BRIDES magazine editor in chief Millie Martini Bratten divulges her top wedding predictions for Chelsea Clinton's upcoming nuptials. (Does she know something you don't know? Hmmm...)
Chelsea's signature style—simple, subdued, and classic—will certainly be on display in the dress she chooses. Vera Wang, whose gowns have been worn by Holly Hunter, Karenna Gore, and Jennifer Lopez, will most likely be making a one-of-a-kind ball-gown fit for the palatial setting of Astor Courts in Rhinebeck, New York, and for political royalty. As a show of respect for future husband Marc Mezvinsky's Jewish heritage, the dress may also feature a high neck and sleeves to cover her arms during the religious ceremony. Like many brides today, she will probably change out of her formal ceremony dress at the reception into a less formal frock as the party goes on into the night.
Inspired by Versailles, Astor Courts is the perfect setting for an over-the-top celebration conceived of by event planner to the stars (and to the Obamas) Bryan Rafanelli. Tucked in over its 56 acres of land, the outdoor wedding preparations have already started—as of today, huge white tents have already been set up on the grounds. After the ceremony, guests will move on to late-afternoon cocktails outside, then continue to a tent outfitted with a lounge area and a hardwood floor for dancing. While Rafanelli will keep in line with the formal look, he is known for his sense of humor and for incorporating the personality of the bride and groom into the party details. Expect personal touches—vows written by Chelsea and Marc, a special song, a signature cocktail, a "photo wall" of family members—to appear throughout the evening.
The newly married couple's menu will be served in different stages, featuring locally grown vegetables (and vegan options for Chelsea) as well as organic meats. Stay tuned for the cake-cutting ceremony; with a substantial guest list numbering in the hundreds, the cake will surely be a showstopper. Chelsea hasn't officially revealed the baker, but for a New York wedding, celebrity cake baker Sylvia Weinstock would be a natural choice—she has done wedding cakes for Donald Trump, Mariska Hargitay, and even Prince Haakon of Norway!
This is a family that loves to party, so expect the wedding to go on late into the night. The music will range from Motown, the King of Pop, and Elton John (one of Hillary's faves) to newer favorites such as U2 (Chels attended their concert recently) and even some Lady Gaga as the party heats up.
MOMENTS TO WATCH
- The MOB will be under the fashion magnifying glass just as much as the bride this Sunday. I'd love to see Hillary in a soft, feminine dress instead of her signature pantsuits. For her pear-shaped figure, Hillary should stick to designer Oscar de la Renta's version of a long A-line gown with a fitted top, embellished with lace or embroidery on the top and a soft, flowy bottom. It will be modest and provide coverage, but also be airy enough that she can enjoy dancing in the summer weather.
- With the former president of the United States as the father of the bride and the current Secretary of State as the mother of the bride, you'd better pull up a chair for the toasts. Don't be surprised if both parents get up to congratulate Chelsea and Marc.
- Bill Clinton's saxophone solo with the Jimmy Vali band. You know he's been practicing!
—Millie Martini Bratten, BRIDES magazine