While murmurings of Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen, Erdem and Christopher Bailey for Burberry have been abuzz in recent months, the site reports that Ralph & Russo are designing the royal wedding gown. Turns out, the answer we’ve all been waiting for has been right under our noses since Harry and Meghan’s stunning engagement session with BAZAAR beloved photographer, Alexi Lubomirski. Markle donned a stunning gown from the the design duo’s Fall 2017 Haute Couture collection for her photo session with Prince Harry at Windsor Castle soon after the couple announced their engagement.
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Multiple sources close to Kensington Palace have reportedly shared that Ralph & Russo will design the first of the two gowns Meghan will wear on May 19th. E!reports that while the design duo have offices in Australia, London and Paris, the designers were spotted leaving their London studio at 8:30p.m. one evening this week, confirming they are indeed in town in the weeks leading up to the royal wedding, potentially to put the finishing touches on Meghan’s gown.
Another suspicious sighting? Prince Harry, who was seen leaving Ralph & Russo’s offices in London’s Chelsea neighborhood last month, flanked by his security. Harry made it clear that he has no plans to see Markle’s gown before their wedding, noting in their first official interview as an engaged couple, “I prefer sticking with traditions.” However, that doesn’t exclude pop-ins to the atelier to visit Markle while the gown is safely tucked away, or to handle payments for the reported six-figure price point of the gown, which The Daily Mail reports is being handled by the Royal Family.
Ralph & Russo Haute Couture Atelier team view hand embroidery portfolios by RSN Degree students at Hampton Court Palace @ralphandrusso #couture #fashion #rsndegree #ralphandrusso pic.twitter.com/mIzhDnDJ81
— Royal Needlework (@RoyalNeedlework) May 1, 2018
E! also reports that days ago, the Royal School of Needlework tagged designers from Ralph & Russo on Twitter, showing the team from the haute couture atelier looking over their students’ portfolios. Let’s not forget–students from the hand embroidery school in the United Kingdom were the helping hands that aided Sarah Burton’s team at Alexander McQueen in the week’s leading up to Kate Middleton’s nuptials to Prince William, The Mirror reports. It would not be surprising, given that Markle’s gown will likely be heavily embroidered given the brand’s signature aesthetic, if the design house tapped the same skilled students for their work on this royal wedding.
And what does a gown that’s hand-embroidered by dozens upon dozens of hands–and that will make history–cost? The Daily Mail reports that the gown will likely hover in the range of approximately £100,000. The reports also detail that the gown is likely heavily beaded and embroidered, which aside from the bespoke level of the gown’s design (the brand is a Haute Couture house after all) could explain its high price point.
Should these rumors be true, the reports of Erdem Moralioglu or Christopher Bailey designing a gown for Markle could still be true. While the bride is dear friends with eveningwear designer Roland Mouret, who implied he may be working with Markle on a design as well, it’s possible that either Erdem or Bailey could be crafting Meghan’s second look for her evening celebrations. Mouret hinted in a recent interview with WWD that he may be collaborating with the future duchess, reports Elle. “Meghan knows really well what she likes and the main thing with Meghan is to listen to her and work in collaboration with her,” Mouret said, adding: “I’ve already said too much.”
This article originally appeared on Harper’s BAZAAR US.