Friday Follies: A Cinderella Story

It’s impossible to think about a prince choosing a lovely but untitled “commoner” to be his bride without reflecting on the story of Cinderella, the fairy-tale with an indelible place in our culture.

That means there's an echo of the classic tale in the news of Prince Harry’s engagement to Meghan Markle. Now, Meghan hasn’t had to endure the torments of an abusive step-mother nor have we seen her dressed in rags, like poor Cinderella. But the fact that royal Harry’s glass slipper fit her, and only her,  makes all but the coldest heart beat a little faster, no matter how cynical a person may be about love and romance.

Harry and Meghan's wedding announcement this week also brings to mind the fairy-tale wedding of another American actress to a prince over 60 years ago – Grace Kelly. Like Meghan, Grace had beauty and poise, and her acting career uniquely fitted her for her new role in the public eye. 

And Prince Rainier seemed every bit as smitten with Grace as Harry does with Meghan.

Here’s a clip of their wedding in Monaco, in April of 1956:

And since we’re talking about Cinderella, I couldn’t resist including a clip of the ballroom scene from the latest movie version of the tale, starring Lily James. Her gorgeous gown was made of several layers of fine blue and purple fabric (270 yards in all) to give it a watercolor effect when she danced.  

Plus, according to, there was a total of 10,000 Swarovski crystals sewn individually to her dress and sprinkled into James' long, flowing hair

Fun fact about this movie: if you look closely at the last scene of this clip, you’ll see that many of the many of the women attending the ball are wearing dresses based on the iconic gowns of other Disney princesses. Among the dresses you can spot on the dance floor are ones inspired by Aurora of Sleeping Beauty, Belle from Beauty and the Beast, Mulan (from Mulan), Ariel (The Little Mermaid) and Tiana (The Princess and the Frog).

See for yourself:

As for me, I can’t wait to see the beautiful dress Meghan will wear on her wedding day!

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