Meghan Markle’s wedding dress is on display and she’s added the ultimate personal touch by introducing it herself!
As the wedding outfits of Prince Harry and Meghan go on display for the first time in the “A Royal Wedding: The Duke and Duchess of Sussex” exhibit at Windsor Castle on visitors will hear the couple themselves talk through every stage of their wedding planning via the exhibition’s audio guide (a royal first!).
In addition to seeing Meghan’s bespoke wedding dress and veil created by British designer Clare Waight Keller, artist director at Givenchy, visitors will also get to see the sparkling diamond and platinum bandeau tiara lent to Meghan by Harry’s grandmother Queen Elizabeth for the royal wedding held earlier this year on May 19.
Also on display is the groom’s outfit — Harry’s uniform of the Household Cavalry (the Blues and Royals) made by Dege & Skinner on London’s Savile Row.
Viewed from behind a glass box in the castle’s Grand Reception Room (where the Queen hosted the couple’s wedding reception!), Meghan talks visitors through exactly why she chose the French fashion house Givenchy.
“I wanted a female designer, that was very important, I wanted a British designer because I wanted to embrace my new home in that way,” Meghan says in the audio recording as she chats to the exhibition curator Caroline de Guitaut, adding: “I wanted something that felt reflective of the world in a way.”
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While Harry’s uniform might not be the exact one worn to walk down the aisle at St. George’s Chapel, it is the closest thing to it.
“He had a new one made but as it’s required during the lifetime of the exhibition, he has very kindly allowed us to display his other one,” explains de Guitaut, adding: “They are identical in every respect.”
Sketches of Meghan’s dress and notes from Maison Lesage, the Parisian embroidery house that worked on the bride’s 16-foot-long silk tulle veil, embroidered with the flowers of 53 countries of the Commonwealth are also on show.
“Overall, the entire veil and dress took 3,900 hours to complete and 50 people working on it between the Givenchy atelier and the Lesage atelier,” de Guitaut reveals, adding that the workers had to wash their hands every 20 minutes to keep the delicate veil pristine.
Also on display are Prince George and Princess Charlotte’s adorable bridal outfits. Wearing an exact replica of Harry’s uniform, George has his initials “GC” for George Cambridge embroidered in gold thread on the epaulettes, which Meghan reveals was Harry’s idea. “Such a beautiful keepsake for them,” she says.
Princess Charlotte, who wore an ivory dress by Givenchy with shoes by Meghan’s go-to shoe designer Aquazurra, also had a personal touch on her outfit – the soles of her shoes are embroidered with her initials and the wedding date.
“We had 10 bridesmaids and page boys under the age of 7, which everybody says is impossible to have them behaving, but they did it!” Harry said with a laugh on the recording, while Meghan agreed: “It was a miracle!”
As the couple guide guests from room to room, they chat animatedly about everything from music choices to flowers and also how important it was to bring their loved ones and members of the public together for their joyous occasion.
“It was a somewhat global wedding, but being able to try and make everybody feel inclusive, it was really, really important to us,” reveals Harry, while Meghan agreed: “In making choices that were really personal and meaningful, it could make the whole experience feel intimate, even though it was a very big wedding.”
Organized by The Royal Collection Trust which manages the public opening of all the Queen’s official residences, the unique exhibition will run from October 26 to January 6, 2019 and will transfer to the Palace of Holyroodhouse, the Queen’s residence in Edinburgh, Scotland on June 14, 2019.