You guys! Harry and Meghan are getting married ON SATURDAY. (I mean, unless something incredibly crazy happens; goodness knows, this week has been very fraught for her, but I’m confident the show will go on, nuptially.) And thus it feels like the time to lay our bets on who, once and for all, we believe she will wear.
There will be two dresses — Kate’s gowns were both by McQueen (here’s her reception dress, in case you forgot what it looks like; I am assuming you recall her actual wedding gown but in case you literally just emerged from a coma, here’s a refresher), but for the purposes of this post, let’s just focus on the ceremony gown. There has been an incredible amount of ink devoted to which designer Meghan might choose, but the options have been narrowed down to the following, in my mind.
(Obviously, the dress itself will be custom — I, for one, cannot wait to see all the little details that have been worked into it; remember how all of the lace in Kate’s gown had a special meaning, and half of it had been hand-tatted by nuns or something? I swoon for that stuff.)
Behold your front-runners, the designers most often named in speculation about this gown and who are leading the betting at Ladbrokes (who have, at various times, suspended betting on McQueen and Packham and Ralph & Russo):
Alexander McQueen: Obviously, McQueen has an unimpeachable record as far as gorgeous royal wedding gowns go. There has been quite a lot of chatter that Sarah Burton and Co. are getting the nod again, but I just don’t see it. I cannot imagine that Meghan will use the same designer that Kate did; McQueen is so, so associated with Kate’s gown. This shouldn’t really matter — and I know a lot of people don’t pay that much attention — but I think it matters enough that McQueen will not be doing this wedding, too. However: I have been wrong before, and Meghan has worn her fair share of McQueen.
Burberry: Christopher Bailey is stepping down from his gig has Burberry creative director, and this would be quite a way to go out. It’s also a quintessentially British brand, and Meghan has worn Burberry before. (Kate, for what it’s worth, rarely wears Burberry, which I’ve always thought was weird.)
Emilia Wickstead: Meghan just wore Wickstead to the Anzac Day services at Westminster Abbey and while I’m not sure that this means anything, what she wore was custom, which means she’s been spending some time in their atelier.
Erdem: Erdem is a hot favorite, and Heather’s pick for the gown. I agree that it’s got to be one of the front-runners. Meghan is on record on loving Erdem (in her YES THIS IS HAPPENING! Vanity Fair cover story) and the brand is really good at that British Garden Frock thing that would dovetail very nicely with a May wedding in Windsor. Erdem Moralioglu himself has ties to Canada and Great Britain: he was born in Montreal, and his mother is English (his father is from Turkey); he was educated in Toronto, where Meghan and Harry fell in love; and he studied fashion in London and launched his label there. So he’d be a meaningful choice on several levels. (She also wore him when she and Harry went to that wedding in Jamaica.)
Giles Deacon: I find it interesting that no one has named Deacon to their lists; he’s a prominent British designer and he did Pippa’s gown to great acclaim. Meghan hasn’t worn him previously, but that’s not stopping people from speculating about…
Jenny Packham: The betmakers in the UK seem to think Packham is a real possibility. In all honestly, I would be surprised if Meghan (a) went for someone so associated with Kate, and (b) whom she’s never previously shown an interest in. Also, Packham herself just said to The Telegraph, “I have no idea what Meghan will wear.” Truthful, or THROWING US OFF THE SCENT?
Ralph & Russo: I personally don’t think she would wear the same designer for their engagement shots and the wedding, but it’s certainly possible that Meghan Markle is secretly Ralph & Russo’s most passionate mega-fan, and they do make a glorious wedding gown. (The top photo in this post is Ralph & Russo.) My feeling is that their general aesthetic is a little more Over The Top than she is likely to go, though? Having said all this, the Daily Mail (I know) SWEARS they’ve got the nod, so….it could definitely happen.
Roland Mouret: Last I checked, Ladbrokes had Roland Mouret at 3/1 odds. The line certainly makes a sleek and gorgeous gown, and would be a good option for Meghan from an aesthetic standpoint — Kate wore them to great applause in 2016 — but Meghan hasn’t wore the line since 2014, although she did look great in that dress. My feeling on this one is that I think they’d make her something amazing, but I would be surprised if they got the gig.
Stella McCartney: Stella is my personal bet, but I actually would be surprised if I’m right, if that makes any sense. I know it’s a bit of a longshot, but! I think Meghan may well be swayed by the fact that Stella had an American mother and a British father — as will her own children, and the fact of which neatly encompasses the British/American crossover that is this wedding. Also, she’s worn Stella before to big deal events (like above). Stella is actually pretty adept at custom pieces, so this might not be a nightmare if it comes to pass, either.
A British Designer Very Few of Us Thought Of: Maybe she’ll shock us! Meghan has said that her dream wedding gown is the iconic slip dress that Narciso Rodriguez did for Caroline Bessette when she married John F. Kennedy, Jr., and Rodriguez was fairly unknown to the American public when he did that dress (as a gift to the bride; they were friends from their respective tenures at Calvin Klein, which is also one of the reasons, I think, that dress feels so connected to what I always think of as the classic CK). Maybe she’ll opt for someone similarly talented but not yet a real boldface brand name.
SOME RANDOM AMERICAN! Or maybe she’ll call on Narciso himself! (That would be surprising, although Rodriguez’s aesthetic is right for Meghan in general.) Frankly, I would be shocked if Meghan wore an American designer. I think when you’re an American marrying a British prince, you take your wedding day to visually re-enforce your commitment to your new country/she doesn’t want to risk people pearl-grabbing about her snubbing the British. However, I’ve said this all over the internet, radio, and TV at this point, so she’ll probably show up in Oscar de la Renta.
Let’s vote and see how Fug Nation thinks this is going to play out. And DEFINITELY feel free to make your opinion known in the comments, so that you can smugly point to how correct you are once you’re right!