Clarence House has confirmed that Kate Middleton is wearing
a wedding dress designed by Sarah Burton at Alexander
A statement on the Official Royal Wedding website confirms: "Miss Middleton chose British brand Alexander McQueen for the beauty of its craftsmanship and its respect for traditional workmanship and the technical construction of clothing. Miss Middleton wished for her dress to combine tradition and modernity with the artistic vision that characterises Alexander McQueen's work. Miss Middleton worked closely with Sarah Burton in formulating the design of her dress."
Brides' fashion director Bryony Toogood gives her expert opinion on the final look: "Wow! A dress by Sarah Burton for McQueen completely befitting of a princess - and thank goodness a train! Intricate, beautiful chantilly lace overlaid bodice, over ivory and white silk gazar with tight long sleeves, high scalloped V-neck, and a gently full, quite structured skirt, and a demure romantic sheet veil. The dress was also worn with the Queen's 1936 Cartier diamond halo tiara - she looks very Grace Kelly in a way. Absolutely stunning - timeless, classic and sure to be a benchmark for future brides. I love it!!"
Meanwhile, Brides' acting editor Jade Beer agrees that the dress was integral to Kate's transition into royalty:
"Kate has achieved the Holy Grail of any bride by looking like the best possible version of herself. The McQueen dress, the simple sheet silk veil, the very modest by royal standards layered train, is the fashion embodiment of everything that we have come to expect from this understated but equally confident and serious woman. The dress needed to transport Kate from commoner to future Queen of England and that is precisely what it has achieved."
The lace appliqué for the bodice and skirt was hand-made by the Royal School of Needlework, based at Hampton Court Palace. Individual flowers have been hand-cut from lace and hand-sewn onto ivory silk tulle to create a unique and organic design, which incorporates the rose, thistle, daffodil and shamrock. The whole process was overseen and put together by hand by Ms Burton and her team.
Kate's ivory duchesse satin and lace-embroidered wedding shoes were also handmade by the Alexander McQueen team and the Royal School of Needlework.