On September 21, 1996, Carolyn Bessette Kennedy was prepared for her wedding to John F. Kennedy Jr. It was one of the most anticipated nuptials since the wedding of Prince Charles and Princess Diana, with thousands of people filling the First African Baptist Church on Cumberland Island, Georgia. However, the couple chose to celebrate their rehearsal dinner and reception at the Greyfield Inn, where most of their guests stayed in attendance.
In July 1999, her husband and she died in a private plane crash when Bessette-Kennedy was 33 years old. At the time, she asked me to make her “most important dress of her life” much shorter than anyone expected. In 2018, he told Vogue, “It was a beautiful moment in my personal life but also a great moment in my career” when he launched his own eponymous label the following year. Her close friend Narciso Rodriguez, who had worked with her at Calvin Klein, instantly made her a household name as a designer. But what changed everything was the dress, which was the event of the wedding.
Twenty-five years after Carolyn Kennedy-Bessette’s wedding dress changed the game, people who watched it happen and those who have followed her legacy can look back on the impact she made in the world of fashion.
The newlyweds descended the candlelit church’s steps, which had only eight benches and lacked air-conditioning. Denis Reggie, a renowned photographer for the Kennedy family who took the most iconic photo of the night, claims to have captured 25 Kennedy weddings.
In a mesmerizing gesture, John brings it to his lips and hands it to her, while I walk backwards in the light rain at dusk. She was caught off guard; John reached out for Carolyn’s hand. It was virtually dark outside. I witnessed it unfolding almost like a silhouette. It was an incredibly magical moment: Reggie.
On Monday, September 23rd, Reggie asked Carolyn and John to choose the photo that would be released to the public.
It was a really special photograph. It gives the real power of authenticity, simplicity, and incredible romance and elegance. It had such an amazing simplicity, more than any other moment. The wedding was happening in a real and natural way, not arranged or posed in any way. It was moving at a full pace, with Carolyn flowing in her beautiful dress. I really adored her expression. I was really surprised and moved by the incredibly princely gesture of Carolyn’s own wedding. Then, at his father’s burial on his third birthday, it was such an interesting and telling moment when his dad saluted him. It was a great gesture, expressive of John Kennedy’s love and warmheartedness. It was a lovely way of showing his love, and it was spontaneous, just like a celebrity gesture.
What stands out in my memory the most is the way they were, particularly the enchanting sensation of their togetherness. During that evening on Cumberland Island and throughout the entire weekend, their love and the affection they radiated were truly stunning to behold. The aspect that remains strongest in my recollection is how they interacted with one another.
She specifically asked to release the photo of Reggie, showing him without his dress on, for the show.
It was absolute perfection, a five-star experience. The wedding perfectly captured the theme and exuded elegance and simplicity. It was absolutely lovely. The bride looked stunning in her beautifully made dress. The dress fit her perfectly and was incredibly lovely. She knew that the moment she would wear the dress would be a showstopper. “My dear friend designed the dress,” she said, excited to show it off. Reggie: