To us, there's one very obvious frontrunner...
Now that the Prince Harry and Meghan Markle engagement has been announced and a royal wedding is officially on the cards (hooray!), like an over-excited bunch of aunties our thoughts inevitably turn to the question of who will be the Meghan Markle wedding dress designer of choice.
The designer of Meghan Markle’s wedding dress will be a closely guarded secret in the run up to the couple’s nuptials next year. Meghan’s future sister-in-law Kate Middleton’s lace Alexander McQueen dress was successfully kept under wraps until the moment she stepped out of the car on her wedding to Prince William in April 2011.
Whoever the Meghan Markle wedding dress designer is will have to engage in similar cloak-and-dagger techniques to prevent any leaks ahead of the day.
Who will be the Meghan Markle wedding dress designer?
Unlike Kate, this is not Meghan’s first rodeo. In 2011 she married film producer Trevor Engelson in Jamaica in a simple white strapless wedding dress, and like a lot of second-time brides she’ll probably have a clear idea of what she wants.
Marie Claire’s fashion director Jess Wood hopes she’ll go for something a bit alternative: ‘A divorcee, an actress, her mixed heritage… Meghan is already breaking the British royal bride mould in so many ways, it would be great to see her choose a ground-breaking dress too. Her style is simple and unfussy, and her figure is much more ‘va va voom’ than Kate’s – she could carry off something really sleek and minimal, with a lower neckline. I’d love to see her in an avant-garde design by Viktor & Rolf (who’ve just launched bridalwear) or a bias-cut slip dress, a la Carolyne Bessette Kennedy. I have a feeling she’ll opt for something more traditional in the end. But wouldn’t a white tux suit like Bianca Jagger be the ultimate?’
But if traditional is the order of the day for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding – who will be designing the dress? Here’s a few (educated) guesses…
There are several reasons why Erdem feels like the obvious choice: Markle is a longtime fan of Moralioglu, referring to him in a Vanity Fair interview as ‘a fashion designer I’ve worn for years.’ As a British-based Canadian designer Erdem would make a great symbolic transatlantic choice for Meghan, and the designer’s style – big on embellishment – would be a marked contrast to the simple number she wore to her first wedding.
Erdem also feels like a particularly topical choice, given his most recent mainline and H&M collections went big on gorgeous 1950s ballgowns that wouldn’t look out of place in an episode of The Crown. Does he know something we don’t?
How likely is that the Meghan Markle wedding dress designer will be Erdem? Pretty likely, if you ask us…
Markle also loves the British-born fashion designer Antonio Berardi. She wore a double-breasted navy number from his Resort 2017 collection to the Polo earlier this year, and Berardi’s knack for a beautifully sculpted silhouette would make him a strong choice for her wedding dress.
How likely is that the Meghan Markle wedding dress designer will be Antonio Berardi? Reasonably likely
If Meghan decides to plump for an school British label when she marries Harry, Burberry could also be on her list. She has worn the label lots of times before and she’d certainly be in safe hands with a bespoke dress from the brand.
How likely is that the Meghan Markle wedding dress designer will be Burberry? We think not as likely as Erdem or Berardi
Could the wife of Harry’s old pal David Beckham step up to the plate? We think VB would be more than happy to seal her reputation as one of Britain’s fashion stars with a royal wedding. But would Meghan be up for it? ‘I love Victoria Beckham dresses, but don’t have the long torso to support that silhouette’ she told Glamour last year. But given the strong relationship between Harry and the Beckhams, could Victoria change Meghan’s mind?
With all eyes on her – a daunting prospect even for a seasoned actress – Markle might decide to pick a trusted friend to design her dress. If she does, a shoo-in would be her old buddy Misha Nonoo, who until recently was married to one of Harry’s old friends, Alexander Gilkes.
How likely is that the Meghan Markle wedding dress designer will be Misha Nonoo? Reasonably likely – if not for the main ceremony Meghan could support her friend by doing a Kate and changing into something sleeker by the designer for the evening party.
When Meghan’s Suits character Rachel Zane almost marries Mike, she opts for a dreamy Anne Barge wedding dress fit for a princess. The dress in question is the bridal designer’s Versailles gown from the Spring 2016 collection, and features a full tulle skirt, embellished neckline and lace insert back.
How likely is that the Meghan Markle wedding dress designer will be Anne Barge? To be honest, probably unlikely. That said, it was a stunning dress which suited Meghan perfectly, and it’s worth remembering Grace Kelly chose Helen Rose, MGM Studios’ costume designer, to create her wedding dress when she married Prince Rainer. So you never know.