Everything to Know About Kim Kardashian and Kris Humphries' Lavish Wedding and 72-Day Marriage
Eight years ago on Tuesday, Kardashian West, 38, and Humphries, 34, tied the knot at an Aug. 20, 2011, ceremony at a private estate.
“It was like we were in heaven,” Kardashian West previously told PEOPLE in a cover story with an exclusive wedding photo album. Added Humphries: “I’m going to remember how perfect it was.”
In remembrance of their over-the-top wedding, estimated at $6 million, here’s a look back at all of the glamorous details.
Following weeks of buzz about when they would say “I do,” PEOPLE got a sneak peek at the wedding invitation, confirming the big date.
Kardashian West and the NBA player scheduled to tie the knot in Montecito, California, and celebrate with (what else?) a black tie affair.
The couple’s wedding invitations were designed by Lehr & Black, who also created invites for Kim’s sister Khloé Kardashian and her ex-husband Lamar Odom, Gwen Stefani and Gavin Rossdale, and Fergie and Josh Duhamel, among others.
The invite, which arrived at guests’ homes housed inside its own box, was embellished with hundreds of jet black hematite crystals.
The former couple celebrated their wedding rehearsal dinner with friends and family at Scarpetta, an Italian eatery inside the Montage Beverly Hills hotel.
“They both looked amazing and very happy to be celebrating their upcoming wedding,” an eyewitness told PEOPLE of the former couple. Added a hotel source: “Kim and Kris rented the whole restaurant for their special celebration.”
About 75 people were in attendance at the three-hour event, including Kardashian West’s former stepfather Caitlyn Jenner, and sisters Khloé, who tweeted “such an amazing night with my family and friends,” and Kourtney, who arrived with ex-boyfriend Scott Disick and their son Mason.
Guests enjoyed a cocktail reception followed by a lavish sit-down dinner. “Kim and Kris were hand-in-hand and side by side for most of the night,” said the witness. “Kim was beaming and looked absolutely gorgeous. During dinner, there were some heartfelt speeches and tears, but mostly laughter. Everyone seemed to have a great time.”
The bride-to-be wore a white dress, while Humphries wore a grey suit.
Tradition with Over-the-Top Glamour
According to wedding planner Sharon Sacks, the couple mixed tradition with over-the-top glamour at their ceremony.
“Kim loves black and white and so does Kris,” Sacks told PEOPLE. “They have this Hollywood royalty feeling and the black and white represented formality. But tradition was very important to them.”
Wearing a custom-designed strapless Vera Wang ball gown, Kardashian West told PEOPLE she “felt like a princess.”
But, she added, “Glam aside, that wasn’t our main goal. It was really about our family and each other.”
While Wang designed it, Kardashian West’s pal Nicole Richie also had an influence. Richie told her, “‘I had this vision for your gown, just hear me out. I think you should go super classic, really old Hollywood,’” Kardashian West said. “‘Think museum. You can’t go with something trendy.’ ”
She accessorized her gown with a veil and bejeweled headpiece.
For the big day, Humphries sported a white tux.
The white and glittery event — officiated by Pastor Joel Johnson — was filmed by E! cameras, which documented the wedding on two-part special, Kim’s Fairytale Wedding: A Kardashian Event.
Although Kardashian West was walked down the aisle by her former stepdad, her late father, the late lawyer Robert Kardashian who died in 2003, was there in spirit.
Asked by Seacrest if she would carry anything on her down the aisle to remind her of him, she said at the time, “I’m having something always with me. These are the moments you wish my dad could be here. You’ll feel the presence of my dad. I’ve had my moments where I’ve cried to Bruce, and it’s been emotional. I wouldn’t be human if I didn’t.”
Kardashian West also had her sisters Kourtney, Khloé, Kendall Jenner and Kylie Jenner by her side as bridesmaids.
What Went Wrong
After just six months of dating, Humphries popped the question on May 18, 2011, with a 20.5-carat Lorraine Schwartz diamond ring he helped design and paid for himself. “It was everything I ever dreamt of and more,” Kardashian West had said. “I think when you know … you know.”
Three months later, they wed.
Following the couple’s honeymoon — which was cut short so Kardashian West could begin filming the latest season of Kourtney and Kim Take New York — the two were already stepping out solo, with Kardashian West attending the MTV Video Music Awards alone.
On Oct. 31, just three weeks after E! broadcast the four-hour special Kim’s Fairytale Wedding and 72 days into her marriage, the reality star filed for divorce in Los Angeles, citing irreconcilable differences.
“I had hoped this marriage was forever, but sometimes things don’t work out as planned,” Kardashian West said in a statement. “We remain friends and wish each other the best.”
Her then-husband didn’t seem to have quite the same script. “I love my wife and am devastated to learn she filed for divorce,” he told PEOPLE in a statement. “I’m committed to this marriage and everything this covenant represents. I’m willing to do whatever it takes to make it work.”
Kardashian West also had a message for anyone who questioned her motives for marrying Humphries — and filing for divorce months later.
“I married for love,” the reality star wrote in a blog post on her website. “I would not have spent so much time on something just for a TV show!”
“I share so much of my life on a reality show, that contemplating whether to even film my wedding was a tough decision to make, and maybe it turned out to not be the smartest decision,” she wrote. “I felt like I was on a fast roller coaster and couldn’t get off when now I know I probably should have.”
“I got caught up with the hoopla,” the post continued, “and the filming of the TV show that when I probably should have ended my relationship, I didn’t know how to and didn’t want to disappoint a lot of people.”
Kris Clears the Air
After years of rumors that the two had faked their romance, Humphries penned an essay for The Players’ Tribune, reflecting on how the relationship and subsequent media attention affected his NBA career.
“Our actual relationship was 100% real,” he said. “When it was clear that it wasn’t working … what can I say? It sucked. It’s never easy to go through the embarrassment of something like that — with your friends, with your family. … But when it plays out so publicly, in front of the world, it’s a whole other level. It was brutal.”
The former New Jersey Nets player reveals he “didn’t know how to handle” the downfall of his marriage, “because I never thought I was going to be famous in that way.”
“I know that most people will always see me as That F****** Guy from TV. And I get it. I signed up for it,” he concluded. “I don’t want any pity at all. But I hope that true fans of basketball remember me as a grinder, as a guy who transformed into a heck of a rebounder, and as a guy who always tried to put the game in the best light.”