The Duchess of Sussex emerged from her car at St. George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle on her wedding day to Prince Harry in a stunning silk gown with three-quarter length sleeves that featured an open bateau neckline and sculpted waist designed by Clare Waight Keller for Givenchy.
Within minutes, the bridal gown was splashed on the front cover of newspapers and magazines around the world and took over social media. Even those who weren’t among the 1.9 billion watching the nuptials around the world saw the new royal in her simple yet modern dress.
“I had no idea how momentous it was going be,” Waight Keller told TIME magazine while attending the TIME 100 gala on Tuesday night, where she was honored as one of the 2019 honorees. “The last time there was a royal wedding there was no Instagram, really, or any of those huge social networks. So it really took me aback, actually.”
The designer added, “The idea of that purity was just really modern. I think it was right for now, and it was right for her.”
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Actress Julianne Moore, who attended the gala with Waight Keller, made the dress a focal point of her tribute to the designer in the TIME 100 issue.
“The world gasped when they saw that bride, and everyone wanted to know who had made that dress,” Moore wrote. “We are drawn to Clare’s work because she doesn’t design from the outside in, she designs from the inside out.”
Waight Keller got the desirable gig in early January 2018, after having a “short meeting” with Meghan about the opportunity to design the royal wedding dress.
“It was an extraordinary moment when she told me,” she told reporters at Kensington Palace the day after the royal wedding. “It was an incredible thing to be part of, such an historic moment and, in fact, to have the opportunity to work with her.”
Meghan was able to honor her wedding dress designer back in December, when she made an unannounced appearance at the British Fashion Awards at Royal Albert Hall in London to present Waight Keller with the British Womenswear Designer of the Year award. She was wearing a black one-shoulder gown that highlighted her baby bump by Givenchy, of course.
Meghan, 37, described Waight Keller as a “British designer leading on the global stage with vision and creativity, but also with incredible kindness,” before announcing her the winner of the honor and sharing a huge hug.
“The ultimate surprise – the very special moment that I discovered #meghanmarkle #duchessofsussex was going to give me the award for Womenswear Designer of the Year,” the designer captioned a photo of the moment on Instagram. “Such an extraordinary moment of emotion and love for this amazing woman who changed my life ]]>🖤