The Special Meaning Behind Meghan Markle's Black Dress for Her First Solo Appearance as a Royal
Meghan Markle is back in black — and her latest outfit choice is super symbolic.
The Duchess of Sussex stepped out without Prince Harry by her side on Tuesday for the “Oceania” exhibit at the Royal Academy of Art in London, marking her first solo outing as a royal. However, her outfit choice was a subtle nod to her and Harry’s relationship.
Meghan, 37, wore a black dress with long, sheer sleeves and a slit up the front of the skirt by Givenchy — the designer behind her royal wedding dress!
She polished off the look with her go-to black pumps by Aquazzura, a Givenchy clutch and her hair in a sleek straight style.
Although Givenchy is a French label, her choice of wedding gown designer also gave a nod to her new British beginnings — British designer Clare Waight Keller has served as Givenchy’s Creative Director since Riccardo Tisci’s departure in 2017.
For Meghan’s wedding to Prince Harry, Waight Keller created a gown out of pure white silk with an open neckline and slight A-line skirt. According to the release, her wedding shoes are “based on a Givenchy refined pointed couture design made of a silk duchess satin.”
“It was an incredible thing to be part of such an historic moment and, in fact, to have the opportunity to work with her,” Waight Keller told reporters at Kensington Palace in London during the royal wedding weekend.
Meghan’s wedding selection seems to have kicked off a royal relationship with Waight Keller and Givenchy, just as the former actress’ sister-in-law Kate Middleton often wears Alexander McQueen — her wedding dress designer — to official engagements. Meghan previously wore a dress by the brand to her first solo outing with Queen Elizabeth as well as a white selection by Givenchy for her Royal Ascot debut.
The date of Meghan’s first solo outing is also significant: It falls exactly one year after she and Harry made their public debut as a couple at the Invictus Games in Toronto. The royal couple walked hand-in-hand into the wheelchair tennis event at the Paralympic-style games — with Meghan rocking the “Husband Shirt” from designer friend Misha Nonoo‘s collection.
Two months later, on November 27, Clarence House announced the couple’s engagement.
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During the evening visit to the Royal Academy, Meghan toured artwork from New Zealand, Fiji, the Kingdom of Tonga and Australia — all of which she and Harry will visit in October — and met the exhibition’s curators and artists, as well as descendants linked to the works displayed.
She also got a taste of the culture she will immerse herself in next month during a short performance by a Maori cultural group.