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Meghan's Royal Wedding dress created by West Midlands-born designer

By Richard Guttridge | News | Published: | Last Updated:

The dress worn by Meghan Markle at her wedding to Prince Harry was designed by West Midlands fashion expert Clare Waight Keller.

It was revealed today that Birmingham-born Keller - the first female artistic director for French fashion house Givenchy - was behind the white gown, which won praise from royal wedding commentators.

Ms Waight Keller was born and brought up in Birmingham, before moving to London in later life where she now resides.

She has previously worked for the likes of Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren, Gucci and Chloé before taking up the role at Givenchy.

Clare Waight Keller

The bridal gown she designed was described as simple in a classic white.

It was in contrast to the elaborate veil worn by Meghan, which was embroidered with flowers from each of the 53 Commonwealth nations.

The Duchess of Sussex chose to work with Ms Waight Keller after meeting her earlier this year.

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Kensington Palace said: "After meeting Ms. Waight Keller in early 2018, Ms. Markle chose to work with her for her timeless and elegant aesthetic, impeccable tailoring, and relaxed demeanour.

"Ms. Markle also wanted to highlight the success of a leading British talent who has now served as the creative head of three globally influential fashion houses – Pringle of Scotland, Chloé, and now Givenchy.

"Ms. Markle and Ms. Waight Keller worked closely together on the design.

"The dress epitomises a timeless minimal elegance referencing the codes of the iconic House of Givenchy and showcasing the expert craftsmanship of its world-renowned Parisian couture atelier founded in 1952."

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Meghan in her Givenchy dress

On the design of the dress, Kensington Palace added: "True to the heritage of the house, the pure lines of the dress are achieved using six meticulously placed seams.

"The focus of the dress is the graphic open bateau neckline that gracefully frames the shoulders and emphasises the slender sculpted waist.

"The lines of the dress extend towards the back where the train flows in soft round folds cushioned by an underskirt in triple silk organza. The slim three-quarter sleeves add a note of refined modernity."

The fabric was an exclusive double bonded silk cady.

David Emanuel, who designed Princess Diana's dress for her wedding to the Prince of Wales in 1981, said described Meghan's dress as 'simple, stylish, elegant and understated'.

Mr Emanuel also paid tribute to the 'clever' decision to include flora of each of the 53 countries of the Commonwealth on her veil.

Another commentator described how Ms Waight Keller's design paid 'homage to her new British roots' through the choice of designer.

Choosing the British designer also gave a message of 'empowerment', according to the editor of the fashion blog Meghan's Mirror. Amanda Dishaw said that the wedding gown was 'classic, timeless and simple'.

Mr Emanuel said: "The dress is as I predicted - simple, stylish, elegant and understated.

"I think the story is in the silk jewelled veil, it encompasses all the Commonwealth flowers, which I think is very clever."

Asked what he thought Diana, Princess of Wales, would think of the dress, Mr Emanuel said: "I think Diana would have approved."

Richard Guttridge

By Richard Guttridge
Chief Reporter - @RichG_star

Chief Reporter for the Express & Star, based in Wolverhampton.

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