Weddings:Grace and Prince Rainier had two weddings: one was a civil wedding and the other a religious ceremony.
Grace and her 65-member wedding party sailed to Monaco on the ocean liner Constitution on April 4, 1956. Prince Rainier gave Grace the yacht "Deo Juvante II" as a wedding gift.
Civil Wedding:April 18, 1956 was the civil ceremony in the palace's baroque throne room. Grace wore a pale pink taffeta dress with cream-colored Alencon lace, white kid gloves, and a Juliet cap. Rainier wore striped trousers, a white vest, gray tie, and a black morning coat. They exchanged their vows in French.
There were only 80 guests at the civil ceremony. They held a reception for the citizens of Monaco after the ceremony so that each one could shake hands with the new princess. A gala celebration was held at the Opera House that evening.
Religious Wedding Ceremony:On April 19, 1956, at 9:30 a.m., 600 guests at the St. Nicholas Cathedral witnessed the religious wedding ceremony of Grace Kelly and Prince Rainier at a high mass that was celebrated by the Bishop of Monaco. The flowers decorating the altar and church included white lilacs, hydrangeas, lilies, and snapdragons. It was called "the wedding of the century" by the press. It is estimated that 30 million people watched the wedding on television.
The matron of Honor was Grace's sister, Peggy. There were six bridesmaids. They all wore yellow organdy dresses. The six junior attendants (4 girls and 2 boys) were all dressed in white.
Guests included Cary Grant, Aga Khan, David Niven, Gloria Swanson, Aristotle Onassis, Ava Gardner, heads of state, and diplomats.
The people of Monaco gave the couple a cream and black Rolls-Royce convertible. The luncheon reception was held in the Palace Court of Honor. They sliced the six-tier wedding cake with the Prince's sword.
Wedding Attire:Prince Rainier wore a Napoleonic military type of uniform that he designed himself.
Grace's wedding gown was a gift from the MGM Studio and designed by Helen Rose. It was a high-necked, long-sleeved gown with a fitted torso and billowing skirt made of twenty-five yards of silk taffeta, one hundred yards of silk net, peau de soie, tulle and 125-year-old Brussels rose point lace. She wore a Juliet cap that was decorated with seed pearls, orange blossoms, and a veil of 90 yards of tulle. The chief hairstylist at MGM Studios, Sydney Guilaroff, styled Grace's hair for her wedding. Grace carried a small Bible and a bouquet of lilies-of-the-valley.