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Tag: alexander mcqueen

The Princess of Wales chose Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen to design her royal wedding gown in 2011

<p>Chris Jackson/Getty</p> Prince William, Duke of Cambridge and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge smile following their marriage at Westminster Abbey on April 29, 2011 in London, England.

Chris Jackson/Getty

Prince William, Duke of Cambridge and Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge smile following their marriage at Westminster Abbey on April 29, 2011 in London, England.

Kate Middleton‘s royal wedding dress is nothing short of iconic.

The Princess of Wales wore a fitted white V-neck gown with a long-sleeved lace overlay to wed Prince William at Westminster Abbey on April 29, 2011. The wedding dress was designed by Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen and paid tribute to the United Kingdom through its lace embroidery. It later broke royal records when it was displayed at Buckingham Palace.

“It has been the experience of a lifetime to work with Catherine Middleton to create her wedding dress, and I have enjoyed every moment of it,” Burton said in a statement on the royal wedding day. “It was such an incredible honor to be asked, and I am so proud of what we and the Alexander McQueen team have created. I am delighted that the dress represents the best of British craftsmanship.”

Over a decade since Kate wore it down the aisle, the timeless gown is still an inspiration to brides everywhere. In 2021, Kate’s look was even named one of the most popular wedding dresses of the decade.

Related: Kate Middleton’s Best Fashion Moments of All Time

Read on to find out everything that went into making Kate Middleton’s wedding dress, from the extreme measures taken to keep its design under wraps to the meaningful details incorporated throughout.

Everyone went to great lengths to keep Kate’s dress a secret

<p>Samir Hussein/WireImage</p> Catherine Duchess of Cambridge arrives for the marriage of Their Royal Highnesses Prince William Duke of Cambridge and Catherine Duchess of Cambridge at Westminster Abbey on April 29, 2011 in London, England.

Samir Hussein/WireImage

Catherine Duchess of Cambridge arrives for the marriage of Their Royal Highnesses Prince William Duke of Cambridge and Catherine Duchess of Cambridge

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Simon Ungless, former chair of the Academy of Art University fashion department, silk-screens a jacket at his home studio in Larkspur on Dec. 12.

Photo: Lea Suzuki/The Chronicle

On the deck of his tree-shaded home in Larkspur, Simon Ungless scraped black ink through a silk printing screen onto a white coat. The designer, clad in a splatter-pattern hoodie and camouflage pants, made for a striking juxtaposition as he executed his punk-tinged art form amid the tranquility of Marin.

“The whole point of this print is that it looks run over,” said Ungless, the former director of the School of Fashion at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco. His English accent lilted as the description became more pointed. “I call it ‘roadkill.’ ”

Lifting the screen, he revealed dark tire tracks. The coat was the kind of classically tailored outerwear typical in many Northern Californians’ wardrobes, but with the added print, Ungless gave it a sense of humor. 

The printing technique is one Ungless, 57, has been employing since his design-student days at Central Saint Martins college in London in the early 1990s. He most famously used the tire tread motif for his friend and former roommate Alexander McQueen’s spring 1995 collection “The Birds,” inspired by Alfred Hitchcock’s 1963, Bodega Bay-set film of the same name. The collection was a breakthrough for McQueen, who reigned as an international fashion star until his death in 2010. The collaboration forever etched Ungless’ name into fashion history. 

The ethos of Ungless’ now 8-year-old clothing brand, When Simon Met Ralph, is a combination of those two worlds: the brutal beauty of London’s underground culture of the 1990s and the eco-conscious, easy-dressing style of Marin. By sourcing dead stock and vintage garments as materials for his collections, he’s keeping fashion waste

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The now Princess of Wales’s close relationship with the house of Alexander McQueen began more than a decade ago, on her wedding day, when she emerged from the Queen’s Rolls-Royce Phantom VI dressed in a spectacular lace gown by artistic director Sarah Burton.

Since then, Kate Middleton has chosen to wear McQueen on countless meaningful occasions, from her children’s christenings to the day she was captured for a trio of official 40th birthday portraits by Vogue photographer Paolo Roversi. Now, it appears, her daughter Princess Charlotte is making it a family tradition.

The eight-year-old Princess’s delicate floral crown is fashioned from silver bullion and crystal, and resembles the one worn by her mother

Princess Charlotte, wearing an Alexander McQueen dress and a Jess Collett X Alexander McQueen headpiece to match her mother’s, holds hands with her little brother Prince Louis in Westminster Abbey.

WPA Pool/Getty Images

For the Coronation of Charlotte’s grandfather, King Charles III, Kate wore an Alexander McQueen dress and cape in ivory silk crepe featuring rose, thistle, daffodil and shamrock motifs representing the four nations. On her head: a Jess Collett X Alexander McQueen headpiece fashioned from silver bullion and crystal with three-dimensional leaf embroidery.

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