Ahead of Meghan Markle's wedding to Prince Harry on Saturday, one of the most anticipated details was the bride's wedding dress, and the new Duchess of Sussex didn't disappoint in her custom Givenchy gown designed by the house's artistic director Clare Waight Keller.
Markle's dress featured an open bateau neckline as its most prominent feature, along with three-quarter length sleeves and a triple silk organza underskirt. The minimalistic design emphasized Markle's classic style and was achieved using six meticulously placed seams and a silk cady fabric.
The Duchess began working with Waight Keller early this year, with the designer telling reporters on Sunday at Kensington Palace that she had a "short meeting" about potentially creating the now-iconic gown.
"It was an extraordinary moment when she told me," Waight Keller said, according to People. "It was an incredible thing to be part of, such a historic moment and, in fact, to have the opportunity to work with her."
On Sunday, Kensington Palace shared Waight Keller's sketches of the dress, writing that the designer and Markle wanted to achieve a "timeless minimal elegance."
Sketches of The Duchess of Sussex’s #RoyalWedding dress, designed by Clare Waight Keller, have been released.
The Duchess and Ms. Waight Keller worked closely together on the design, epitomising a timeless minimal elegance referencing the codes of the iconic House of Givenchy. pic.twitter.com/A9ZFKVZmUz— Kensington Palace (@KensingtonRoyal) May 20, 2018
Markle's 16-foot veil was adorned with the flora of all 53 countries of the Commonwealth, as well as Wintersweet, which grows in front of Meghan and Harry's home at Nottingham Cottage, as well as the California Poppy in a nod to Markle's home state. The veil also features crops of wheat to symbolize love and charity.
Workers labored for hundreds of hours on the veil, washing their hands every 30 minutes to keep the fabric pristine. Kensington Palace revealed that Markle had "expressed the wish of having all 53 countries of the Commonwealth with her on her journey through the ceremony."
Ms. Waight Keller designed a veil representing the distinctive flora of all 53 Commonwealth countries united in one spectacular floral composition.May 20, 2018
Waight Keller shared that working with Markle was "very collaborative," and that the former Suits star was familiar with her work.
"It was a wonderful way to start the collaboration with her, finding out what she wanted for her day and just to find the absolute perfect style for her," the designer said. "Part of it was really a conversation in the beginning and then through a series of sketches that I proposed to her. We exchanged conversations about what would be the ultimate lines and proportions and the scale of the dress."
"But over time we quickly got to a point where she knew exactly what she wanted, having tried some of mock-ups that I had shown her," she continued. "And then it evolved into the final design."
Waight Keller added that it was "an absolute joy" working with Markle.0comments
"She is just exactly what you see on TV," she said. "She is just so genuine and warm and radiant. She is just glowing. And she's a strong woman. She knows what she wants."
Photo Credit: Getty / Mike Egerton - PA Images