June 22, 1998 12:00 PM

Kirsty Hume & Donovan Leitch

September 23, 1997

In December 1996, when he went to her father’s house in Ayr, Scotland, to ask for the hand of model Kirsty Hume, 22, model-musician Donovan Leitch, 30, was so nervous, “I just kept saying, ‘Uh, nice weather we’re having,’ ” he recalls. The weather cooperated for the wedding on the banks of Loch Lomond nine months later, but the bride was off schedule by 35 minutes. “My dad and I were in this 1920s Rolls-Royce that only went 30 miles an hour,” Hume explains. Waiting at the small Protestant church were 140 guests—including designer Stella McCartney and Beastic Boy Adam Horovitz—who made the two-mile ” trip up the picturesque lake by ferry. And Leitch was nervous once again. Even though the couple had been living together for two years, the groom says, “I was going nuts.”

When Glasgow-born Hume did show up, the modern-day face of Chanel was a medieval vision in an ivory satin brocade gown by Arkivestry and coronet headpiece of amethyst and silver. “I was inspired by some pictures from King Arthur’s times,” says Hume, who had her five attendants clad in period-style dresses in lavender, the color of the local heaths. The traditional gala featured a Celtic bagpiper, Highland dancers, a folk-flavored ceilidh band and Leitch, outfitted in a custom-made kilt of MacDonald tartan. In true Scotsman fashion, he reveals, “I did go the full monty underneath.”

During the reception at a nearby mansion, his father, ’60s folksinger Donovan, crooned an old Scottish ballad. “I thought, ‘Oh, boy,’ ” says Leitch. “Then all my friends broke down crying. It was amazing.” At 3 a.m., those pals “were in tow behind me wanting to raid the minibar” as Leitch headed up to his bridal chamber. Upholding the most sacrosanct tradition of all, he “turned around and said, ‘Guys, this is my wedding night! Get lost!’ ”

Kristen McMenamy & Miles Aldridge

October 21, 1997

For his friend Kristen McMenamy, Chanel chief Karl Lagerfeld proved to be the ultimate wedding planner. Not only did he introduce the Pennsylvania-born model, 33, to British fashion photographer Miles Aldridge, 33, but two years later he designed her dress and flew to London from Paris to walk the six-months-pregnant bride down the aisle.

The Orangery in Holland Park was decorated with white lilies for the civil ceremony before 150 guests, including designers Vivienne Westwood and Rifat Ozbek. Preceding the bride were three flower girls (including McMenamy’s 4-year-old daughter, Lily, by former boyfriend Hubert Boukobza) and bridesmaids Naomi Campbell and Aldridge’s sister Saffron, a former Ralph Lauren model. McMenamy wore a flesh-colored chiffon gown that was tied above and below to emphasize her swelling belly. “Kristen looked, as always, beyond beautiful,” says Philip Treacy, who created her elaborate feather headdress (beneath which her auburn hair was sprayed gold). “She was truly sophisticated.”

Guests savored champagne and oysters before heading next door to the Belvedere, where the menu switched to traditional pub grub of bangers and mash (sausages and mashed potatoes) and the dancing went on until 2 a.m.

Gail Elliott & Joe Coffey

September 18, 1997

Sitting with her beau in their 1997 Chevy Tahoe on a cool spring day beside their favorite East Hampton, N.Y., beach, British-born model Gail Elliott thought Joe Coffey was fumbling in his pocket for a parking ticket he had lost. But the Australian screenwriter and director, 36, pulled out a diamond-and-white-gold engagement ring. For the next six months, Elliott, 35, planned a weeklong wedding celebration in the Hamptons that would bring together her relatives from England, his family from Down Under and a few close friends. “I’m very organized,” she says. “I love making lists.” She managed to find an unscheduled day for four model bridesmaids—including Helena Christensen, who introduced the couple in 1994. Then she oversaw the design of taupe attendants’ dresses and a pearl silk organza bridal gown from Tocca. “I was the something old,” says a laughing Elliott, who slipped a tiny blue flower in her shoe and borrowed Cindy Crawford’s diamond cross necklace. During the reception for 70 at a local restaurant, “I’m sure my ushers all had ideas” about wooing the bridesmaids, says Coffey. Alas, due to husbands and boyfriends, “their hopes were dashed by the end of the night.” Not least when Elliott tossed her bouquet directly to Crawford, whose boyfriend, restaurateur Rande Gerber, stood nearby. “I screamed her name and threw it right at her,” says Elliott. “She really didn’t have much choice.”

Heidi Klum & Ric Pipino

September 6, 1997

After she accepted Manhattan hairdresser Ric Pipino’s proposal atop the Empire State Building, the 1998 SPORTS ILLUSTRATED swimsuit-issue cover girl yelled, “We’re engaged!” Then, recalls Heidi Klum, 23, “I made everyone take pictures of us with my camera.” Fifteen months later, after saying her vows on a 50-acre Stone Ridge, N.Y., estate, Klum didn’t yell, she yodeled. “My name is Heidi and I’m from Germany,” she says, “so I have to make a little fun of myself sometimes.” That appeals to Pipino, 39. “The more I get to know her,” he says, “the more she makes me laugh.”

Klum’s parents—father Gunther and mother Erna—traveled from Bergisch Gladbach, Germany, to the black-tie gala for 100. “I wanted it to be formal but not too stiff,” says Klum, who wore a “big but simple and classic” Vera Wang gown. “The wedding was romantic and traditional but loose.”

After the outdoor civil ceremony, the reception was punctuated by two German customs. To guarantee children, Pipino—in a black Prada suit—climbed a ladder to retrieve a doll from a wooden stork placed in the window of their bridal suite. “The Americans thought we were crazy,” says Klum, who joined her groom to saw a log in half using a two-handled blade. “It’s to be the first task you do together as a married couple,” she says. “It’s not easy at first, but after a while you get the groove. Just like marriage.”

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