What Will Princess Eugenie's Wedding Dress Look Like?

BY Amy de Klerk / Aug 16 2018 / 21:23 PM

Everything we know so far about the second royal wedding gown of the year

What Will Princess Eugenie's Wedding Dress Look Like?
Alex Bramall

On Friday 12 October, we will witness our second royal wedding of the year when Princess Eugenie marries Jack Brooksbank at Windsor Castle. And, as with most celebrity weddings, the majority of the speculation surrounding the nuptials centres on what the bride will wear.

Although we are unlikely to know any firm details about the dress or who has designed it until she steps out of the car that morning, we've looked back at what other recent royal brides have worn, reviewed the rules that the princess may need to adhere to and studied what Eugenie's past style might be able to tell us about her wedding gown.

What have other recent royal brides worn?

When it came to Meghan Markle's dress, almost nobody predicted that she would opt for Clare Waight Keller of the French fashion house Givenchy, with most fashion experts predicting that she would wear a British house such as Ralph & Russo, Erdem or Burberry. In the end, the duchess chose Waight Keller for her "timeless and elegant aesthetic, impeccable tailoring, and relaxed demeanour," according to Kensington Palace. She also wanted to highlight the "success of a British leading talent".

The resulting gown was an understated yet feminine floor-length gown, featuring a bateau neckline and a triple silk organza underskirt. She also chose a cathedral-length, five-metre-long veil trimmed with lace, and a tiara that once belonged to Princess Mary.

For the evening, Meghan also chose to highlight another British female talent in the form of Stella McCartney, who created a high-necked, fishtail, silk-crepe gown for the occasion.

If you cast your mind back to the wedding of Kate Middleton and Prince William in 2011, the story was very different, in that the name of the designer was leaked before the wedding. However, while it was not a surprise on the morning of the nuptials that Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen was behind the creation, that took nothing away from it being an undisputed success.

Kate, like Meghan, chose a sleeved gown, but her dress differed dramatically from her sister-in-law's as she opted for lace over silk. She also went for a very different silhouette – one which cinched in at the waist and had padded hips, creating the ultimate princess dress. The silk underskirt was trimmed with Cluny lace.

Kate added an ivory silk veil, which was created by the Royal School of Needlework. She held it in place with the Cartier halo tiara, which the Queen had been given on her 18th birthday (from her mother) and lent to her new granddaughter-in-law for her big day.

Just like Meghan, Kate also chose to wear a second wedding dress, however, she stuck with the same designer and wore a very similar silhouette, but this one was made of silk and featured a diamond-encrusted belt and a shrug.

Kate and William's wedding was not the only royal wedding to take place that year, with the Queen's eldest granddaughter Zara Phillips also tying the knot in 2011. The equestrian star married her rugby player boyfriend Mike Tindall in a beautiful full-skirted silk faille and duchess satin gown with a pleated corseted bodice and tulle shoulder detail, which was designed by Stuart Parvin, the Queen's dressmaker.

Zara also added a fine tulle veil to her wedding-day look which she wore with a diamond tiara – one which originally belonged to Prince Philip's mother, Princess Andrew of Greece and Denmark.

Just a few years prior to this, in 2008, Zara's brother Peter Phillips married Autumn Kelly in a wedding that took place at St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle, the same venue that Harry and Meghan tied the knot in and where Eugenie and Jack will also make things official.

Autumn chose Somerset-based bridal designer Sassi Holford to create her wedding gown, which was made of off-white duchess satin and Chantilly lace. The gown featured a fitted waist and a full skirt as well as a long train. Just like Zara and unlike Kate and Meghan, Autumn chose a short-sleeved gown – wearing a lace bolero over a strapless dress.

What royal rules will Eugenie have to follow?

Life in the royal family tends to come with plenty of protocol that members have to follow, but who has to stick to which rules depends on where they are in line to the throne. So, for example, Meghan and Harry were able to have a more low-key wedding than Kate and William as the latter is the first born and therefore heir to the throne. In the same sense, Zara and Peter's weddings were able to be even more understated as they are further down the line.

Therefore, Princess Eugenie (who is currently ninth in line to the throne) will likely have a much more relaxed set of rules to stick than William and Harry did when it comes to her wedding day, which we we may see play out in what she chooses to wear.

One unwritten rule which Eugenie is very likely to stick to though is that royal brides wear white. Ever since Queen Victoria chose to wear white when she married Prince Albert in 1840, every bride in the British royal family has chosen to wear the hue. It would be very surprising if Eugenie broke away from this, no matter how relaxed her wedding may be.

Eugenie will also likely adhere to a fairly modest neckline and probably won't show too much skin. Although there aren't any strict rules about this, royal brides have tended to keep it demure considering the occasion.

The princess may, however, choose to go against Meghan and Kate's style (and indeed Princess Diana and Sarah Ferguson's) and choose to opt for a short-sleeved or sleeveless design. She would not be the first royal bride to do so – both Autumn and Zara did this – however, considering that the wedding is taking place in Windsor in October, it seems likely that Eugenie will choose to wear sleeves to keep warm.

Which designers has Eugenie worn before?

When speaking to British Vogue this month, Eugenie gave very little away about her wedding dress, but did confirm that it would be a "British-based designer".

"I'm not telling anyone who is making it, but I can say it is a British-based designer. [The dress] is the one thing that I was really decisive about. As soon as we announced the wedding, I knew the designer, and the look, straight away. I never thought I'd be the one who knew exactly what I like, but I've been pretty on top of it."

From this, we can decipher that it is probably a British-based designer that she has worn before. The two most likely contenders are Vivienne Westwood and Erdem, these being the creators of two of her most noteworthy looks, but she could, of course, easily surprise us just as Meghan did.

The Vivienne Westwood look in question was the ensemble Eugenie wore to watch her cousin William tie the knot to Kate Middleton in 2011. Although the eccentric Philip Treacy hat probably stole the show, her striking blue jacket and skirt in Westwood's signature draped and exaggerated style made it one of the royal family's most memorable looks in recent times.

Westwood is known for her ability to create dramatic gowns and has dressed many a celebrity bride, including perhaps one of the most famous on-screen brides of all time, Carrie Bradshaw in Sex and the City. If Eugenie is hoping for some sartorial drama on her big day, Westwood would be an excellent choice.

Another British designer which Eugenie has turned to on a few occasions – and who was rumoured to be behind Meghan's dress – is London Fashion Week favourite, Erdem Moralioglu. The princess chose one of his trademark floral designs for her engagement portraits and, while this could suggest that she won't choose him again (as with Meghan and Ralph & Russo), he is definitely a favourite of hers and his beautiful intricate designs would be perfect for her wedding day.

Will she wear a tiara?

While we can't be absolutely sure of much when it comes to Eugenie's wedding dress, we can be pretty confident that the bride will wear a tiara. It is also expected that she will choose her family heirloom, the York tiara, which her mother Sarah Ferguson wore on her wedding day.

Via Harper's Bazaar UK