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PARIS — The pope of fashion is also one very proud papa. At the Saturday nuptials of his only daughter, Delphine, a visibly elated Bernard Arnault couldn’t resist taking out a handheld video camera to capture the bride, radiant in a voluminous, rose-embroidered gown by John Galliano for Christian Dior. At one point, he even joined Karl Lagerfeld — who took portraits of guests until the wee hours — in taking snapshots with a compact digital camera, as well.
There certainly was a lot of detail to document. The spectacular wedding dress, made from 180 yards of organza and 200 yards of tulle, took 700 hours of work in the Dior couture ateliers, plus 600 more hours of embroidery — and that doesn’t include the 20-foot-long veil.
Likewise, the weekend-long festivities near Bordeaux were organized with intricate precision — all overseen by the chairman of luxury giant LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton. In front of guests — who ranged from France’s First Lady Bernadette Chirac and the Infanta Elena of Spain to Marisa Berenson and Elizabeth Hurley — Delphine came down the aisle to Mozart on her father’s arm, and left in a Thirties Rolls-Royce Phantom with her new husband, Alessandro Vallarino Gancia, heir to an Italian liquor dynasty.
“It was a beautiful wedding, lovely,” Hurley said, agog at the Empire-line Dior dress embroidered with vines Delphine changed into for the evening. “It was fabulous.”
The cocktail, with Marc Jacobs in a sweater and Hedi Slimane in head-to-toe black, started at 7:30 p.m. sharp, with the business titan greeting every guest one by one at the Chateau d’Yquem. Then came a monochromatic fireworks display and a toast. “My friend, Albert Frere, told me that when you marry your daughter, it’s an emotional moment,” Arnault said. “I can say that he is right.”