Royal wedding: what will Meghan Markle wear on the day?

Tuesday, 15th May 2018, 10:37 am
Updated Tuesday, 15th May 2018, 11:52 am

The designer of Meghan Markle's wedding dress will not be announced until the big day on 19 May, Kensington Palace has confirmed.

Until then, the design and style will be a closely-guarded secret, as it was for the Duchess of Cambridge when she married Prince William.

But that hasn't stopped speculation over who the designer will be and whether Ms Markle will go for a British brand, in a nod to her new life as a royal, or American, honouring her life in the US.

What do we know about the dress?

Not much, except that it is likely Ms Markle will have considered some royal wedding etiquette when settling on the design.

Royal brides - including The Queen, Princess Diana and the Duchess of Cambridge - have gone for ivory silk rather than white, according to Debrett's.

The etiquette experts are also fairly confident Ms Markle will have her shoulders covered, "as is tradition for formal church ceremonies in the UK".

Debrett's also says royal brides have chosen to have a good luck charm sewn into the lining of their dress. The Queen went for a clover leaf while the Duchess of Cambridge chose some blue ribbon.

Judging by tradition Ms Markle will probably wear a tiara, which may come from the Queen's collection.

Any clues about the designer?

It is unclear whether Ms Markle will opt for a British or American designer.

One front-runner appears to be Ralph & Russo, the London-based brand that was behind the black dress she wore for her engagement photos.

Meghan Markle wore a Ralph & Russo gown for her engagement photos (Kensington Palace)

The other UK-based designers that have been floated include Alexander McQueen, Emilia Wickstead and Jenny Packham.

Sarah Burton, the creative director of Alexander McQueen, famously designed the Duchess of Cambridge's wedding dress.

Ms Markle is also known to like the work of Erdem Moralıoğlu, the Canadian-Turkish designer behind Erdem. The brand regularly features at London Fashion Week.

The designers behind the royal wedding dresses

The Queen: Norman Hartnell

Princess Margaret: Norman Hartnell

Princess Anne: Maureen Baker (for marriage to Captain Mark Phillips)

Princess Diana: The Emanuels

Sarah, Duchess of York: Lindka Cierach

Countess of Wessex: Samantha Shaw

Autumn Phillips: Sassi Holford

Duchess of Cambridge: Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen

Zara Phillips: Stewart Parvin

On the other side of the pond, some have indicated Ms Markle might pick a dress from Misha Nonoo - the designer is said to be a friend of the soon-to-be royal. Marchesa is another American brand Ms Markle has been known to wear.

One person who has ruled herself out of creating the gown is Vera Wang, the celebrated wedding dress designer. Vera Wang was chosen by Ivanka Trump, Chelsea Clinton, Kim Kardashian (for her marriage to Kris Humphries) and Victoria Beckham.

"Other than [wearing] us, and she's not wearing us - there are two ways for her to go: American or British. Given her new position, her new status, and her new role, she'll very well go British," Ms Wang told Harper's Bazaar.

And what about Prince Harry?

The option is between military uniform and a morning suit and it is thought the Queen, as head of the armed forces, will have the final say.

"Members of the Royal Family who have served in the forces or hold honorary ranks will often wear dress uniform at wedding and state events," according to Debrett's x Bicester Guide To Modern British Weddings.

The Royal Marines uniform is the equivalent to that of a Field Marshal's. It is expected Prince Harry will also wear his Army Air Corps wings above his Golden and Diamond Jubilee medals. He will also wear his Afghanistan Campaign medal.

By Serina Sandhu

A version of this article was originally published on our sister title, iNews