As the entire world focuses their attention on the Saturday wedding of Pippa Middleton and James Matthews, little is known about the duo apart from their very famous, and very royal, extended family.
Pippa, of course, stunned some time ago at the 2012 royal wedding of her sister and Prince William, accidentally launching herself into a spotlight normally reserved for royals and royals only.
So who is James Matthews? And how was their love story born?
Behind the blinding lights of their fame and the many, many (and I mean many) zeros of their bank accounts, James and Pippa’s path to nuptials is actually quite lovely.
After meeting all the way back in 2006 in St Barts – the Matthews family then owned the luxury Eden Rock hotel – the couple were friendly but did not date because of what was, at the time, a sizeable age gap; Pippa was 23 and James 31.
Though it’s believed they stayed in contact since that initial meeting, it took the couple 10 years to turn that friendship into what it is today.
Six years after they first met, Pippa and James began dating very briefly. She, just seven months after debuting her relationship with cricketer Alex Loudon at her sister’s wedding, was newly single. Many a media report wrote that Loudon could not fathom the media attention enveloping his then-girlfriend and their relationship.
However, after a few months and a handful of dates, the relationship between Pippa and her now-fiancé fizzled out and the couple called time.
By February 2013, Pippa began dating Nico Jackson, an established stockbroker. The two dated for three years and English media were fixated on the idea the two would soon marry.
However, by October 2015 they had split, citing an inability to make a long distance relationship work. (Jackson, at that time, was working in Switzerland.)
Before long, 41-year-old Matthews was back on the scene. It’s believed the couple spent New Years Eve in 2015 together before making their relationship both public and official when they hit the slopes together in Norway that March.