By Janecia Britt
There’s no doubt that 2018 was a big year for the royal family. With the nuptials of American actress and humanitarian Meghan Markle to Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, and the wedding of Princess Eugenie of York to Jack Brooksbank, it’s understandable to feel bitten by the royal bug.
It’s hard to think that any dress could top Kate Middleton’s Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen gown. The Duchess of Cambridge’s dress, which combined tradition and modern details, is still talked about today. The style, a hallmark of McQueen, was inspired by the Victorian tradition of corsetry and the bodice, skirt and underskirt trim of the dress were created out of an English and French Chantilly lace.
All of these details are what made Middleton’s dress a showstopper. “Kate Middleton’s dress, in a way, epitomized the Southern look with all of the delicate details,” said Maggie Matthews, the owner of Margaret Ellen Bridal in Inlet Beach.
However, Meghan Markle’s Clare Waight Keller for Givenchy wedding dress has made an impact of its own. “I think Meghan Markle inspired more brides to go for that simple, clean and chic look. Meghan has allowed brides to embrace an understated beauty,” says Alex Barnes of Tallahassee’s White Wedding Bridal.
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Eugenie, Princess of York, is a personal favorite as her wedding look was traditional yet effortless. The dress, designed by Peter Pilotto and Christopher de Vos for Peter Pilotto, was white satin with floral appliqués, long sleeves, an open back, off-the-shoulder neckline and a statement train that seemed to go on for miles.
Her look was minimal yet breathtaking, showing off Eugenie’s beauty while also including subtle nods to her heritage, such as embroidered York roses and Irish shamrocks.
“Minimalism has been a rising trend in bridal fashion for a few seasons, and I predict that the simple wedding gown silhouette will see a resurgence. I’ve already started seeing three-quarter-length sleeves, clean lines, and bateau and off-the-shoulder necklines having a major moment in bridal fashion.” says Barnes.
And the accessory that’s become a must-have since Markle’s nuptials? No, it’s not a tiara but the coveted cathedral veil. While some brides may go sans veil, like Eugenie, or a standard veil, like Kate, there are plenty of brides who want that Markle sparkle.
Markle’s 16.5-foot, cathedral-length veil was made from silk tulle and featured a trim of hand-embroidered flowers from each of the 53 countries in the British Commonwealth. Markle also added a few personal touches such as an embroidered California Poppy, which is the state flower of her home state of California.
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The show-stopping veil was truly the cherry on top of an immaculate look, and it’s a look you can have for yourself. “Girls really want that cathedral veil-look like Meghan Markle. Some brides even want to add length to the standard cathedral veil. We can accommodate that look as all our veils are handmade in the United States and can be totally customized to the bride’s wishes,” says Matthews.
While you probably won’t have a royal team to prep you for your own big day, remember that your wedding day is your own. “Look for inspiration in their weddings, but don’t be afraid to make it your own and your style. Don’t be afraid to stray from that royal look if it doesn’t fit your style,” says Barnes.
There’s no doubt our local boutiques can help you add a unique royal touch in your own bridal aesthetic — whether you want your look to be Kate, Meghan or Eugenie.