The moment the engagement of Kate Middleton and Prince William was announced, a flurry of speculation as to who would design the soon-to-be Princess’s dress started almost immediately. There's no denying Kate’s influence in the fashion industry after the blue Issa London she wore to the engagement press conference sold out, and the see-through dress Kate modelled in her University days was just auctioned off for a whopping £78,000.
Interestingly, Kate seems rather ambivalent in her influence. Not exactly fashion-forward but always shiny-haired and immaculate, Kate’s silence as to who will design her wedding dress has left fashion experts and editors clueless - and the speculation fierce. Many hope that because of her massive consumer influence with the British fashion industry that she’ll choose a home-grown designer. Others expect she’ll go with smaller labels as to help boost their career, as she’s down with Issa London and Libelula in the past.
But who will make the future Princess’s dress? Below are the designers that most speculate she'll choose from, as well as the designers we'd love to see her walk down the aisle in.
Click an image to open the gallery. Have any guesses of your own? Let us know who you'd love to see dress Kate on her big day.
One of the favourites to design Kate’s bridal gown is Dame Vivienne Westwood. This gorgeous, white gown from Westwood’s most recent Red Label collection is dramatic and full of eccentricity, much like the Dame herself. Kate's outfits are usually more subdued, but a Westwood designed dress would bring a modern yet elegant touch to the royal wedding.
Philipa Lepeley has designed wedding dresses for plenty of celebrities, including Davina McCall and Ulrika Jonsson, which is why many have their money on Lepeley as the designer for Kate’s wedding dress. From flowing trains to detailed, feminine shapes, Lepeley’s dresses are much more classic, and it’s easy to picture Kate in almost all of her designs.
Sarah Burton (Alexander McQueen)
Another favourite designer to create the perfect wedding dress for Kate is Sarah Burton, who took over the McQueen Label. Kate loves figure-hugging dresses and a bodice such as the one on this fierce gown from McQueen’s AW11 collection. McQueen's current collection may be too dramatic for Kate, but we imagine a bespoke wedding gown would go down very well with the British fashion community.
Alberta Ferretti’s designs would be a lovely choice for Kate’s wedding dress. Ferretti’s feminine, flowing and shapely gown designs are more traditional, which many think Kate will opt for on her wedding day.
When it comes to fashion people often stick to what they know, and there’s a chance that Kate may go for one of her favourite labels on her wedding day - Issa London. This white, silk-chiffon gown is similar to the other Issa dresses Kate has worn in the past, but we imagine that having a specially-made wedding dress from one of her favorite designers would be a very attractive option for Kate.
One of Britain's most treasured designers, Stella McCartney designing Kate's wedding dress would certainly be a hit. Fresh and modern but still simplistically beautiful, a more contemporary dress - like this one from her AW11 collection - would be a very fashion-forward move for Kate. Whilst a shorter wedding dress would certainly be trendy, but one has to wonder what the Royal Family would think.
Temperley London have a gorgeous range of bridal dresses, and their elegant, classic aesthetic - perfectly demonstrated in this embroidered lace gown - would look positively regal on Kate.
We’d love to see Kate break the mould and wear a smaller label’s designs on her big day. Jeff Garner’s eco-friendly label Prophetik has been steadily growing over the past few years, with Livia Firth recently wearing one of his dresses at the Golden Globes. The silk and white organza "Mrs Moulton" gown is covered in hand-sewn ostrich feathers, and would be a striking choice for Kate.
Practically any dress from Elie Saab’s Couture AW11 collection would be a fantastic wedding dress for Kate. The collection’s full, sweeping skirts and feminine necklines would be stunning on the future princess, and wearing a bit of haute couture at the royal wedding would be sure to leave a lasting impression.
Picture credits: Rex Features, Getty Images, Phillipa Lepley, Issa London, Christopher Dadey, Alberta Ferretti