May 19th marks the day we have all been impatiently waiting for: Prince Harry will take American actress Meghan Markle as his wife, welcoming her into the British royal family. The wedding, due to take place at Windsor Castle in England, will be followed by millions worldwide, and we’re sure it will be nothing short of captivating. Caroline Castigliano, one of the U.K’s top bridal designers for 27 years and running, is an expert on all things Royal Wedding. She covered Prince William and Kate Middleton’s wedding in 2011, and, you’ve guessed right: she will be at Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s, too. We got to chat with Caroline and hear her take on the wedding of the year, what she thinks Meghan’s dress will look like, and how you can prepare for your own special day.
You were there for Kate and William’s wedding back in 2011. Do you think the upcoming Royal Wedding can be even more spectacular?
I absolutely think that it is going to be spectacular! The fact that it is an American marrying into British royalty is creating a lot of excitement. Everybody in Europe loves and worships Harry. So to see him coming through and finding the woman he wants to spend his life with, everybody is ecstatic about that. Meghan is lovely, she believes in all of the things that Harry believes in. Kate and William are similar ages, so I think the four of them together are going to be phenomenal. Because of all of this, they get tons of press, so I think the excitement for this wedding is huge.
What kind of dress are you picturing Meghan in, if you were to design it for her?
I believe she will wear a figure hugging dress, following the lines of her figure. I think it will be a straighter fit, and it will probably be beaded. I suspect she will go away from what Kate did. She will have a low v-neckline, but no cleavage. She will have her shoulders covered and have a lovely long sleeve with buttons going up to the elbow. I think she will probably have a long, attached train, coming from the sides, creating that grand look. The beading of the dress will be trickling all around to the bottom edge of the train. I think she will have a silk vail that flows past the back of the train with some beadwork on the very bottom that tunes into the dress. I think that she will wear a tiara, maybe one that was owned by Princess Diana. Meghan might wear her earrings, too. It’s so important to the boys to bring Princess Diana into everything that they do, so I think that they will be bringing her to the day.
Do you think Meghan’s dress reveal will be a big surprise, or are you expecting her to follow royal tradition?
Her dress, I believe, will follow royal tradition. You need to have your arms and shoulders covered, showing no cleavage. All these things are a sign of respect to the royal family. Harry worships his grandmother, and the respect Meghan shows will be picked up by the British people. That’s what she will do during the day. I think at night, when they go to their personal party, she’ll change. She’ll change into something that she’s completely in love with, something that’s her style, by a designer she wants to wear. Maybe even something from her past, either Canadian or American, something entirely different.
There are speculations about who is designing her dress – Erdem Moralioglu, Inbal Dror, to name a few – who is your bet on?
My personal view is that it will definitely be a fashion designer or brand, because that is how it’s always done. But so far, nothing has gotten out there. It is completely staggering, because normally someone in a little group leaks something out and everyone gets a feel for what is going on. But in this particular case, nobody has any idea. Everyone is talking about Erdem Moralioglu, but he is Canadian… so would that be quite right, or should it be British? If it was British, it could be Burberry, but they don’t actually make gowns. Otherwise, I have suggested Stella McCartney or Victoria Beckham, who has told the whole world that she is not doing it, but she is friends with them.
This wedding will be followed worldwide. How can Meghan prepare for being in the spotlight on the most important day of her life?
I don’t think Meghan will have too much trouble, she seems like an incredibly confident person to me. The fact that she has the background she does, being an actress, is just a plus in every way. She is used to being followed and having the press everywhere. For a girl like Princess Diana, when she stepped into the limelight, she really struggled with the whole situation. She was a nursery school teacher and they followed her everywhere, they just never let her go. I think she found that horrendously difficult. Kate started dating William when she was 18, so it was a slow thing she built into. They train you for these things when you get into the royal family. But with Meghan, she has been out there with the media, she has a background, she’s 36. I actually think she will be enjoying it, as she should!
Many women want their wedding to be perfect. What advice would you give them to make the best of their special day?
The most important thing to remember about a wedding is: you can make all the plans in the world to make your day as perfect as possible, but the only person that actually knows those plans are probably you, your mother, and your fiancé. People come to a wedding to enjoy themselves, to have a wonderful time. On the day, don’t get upset because some little thing didn’t turn out exactly the way you wanted it to. Nobody else knows that. They’ve come to celebrate your marriage. Make sure to put those little things to the side, because they absolutely don’t matter. Relax and enjoy!
How do you define beauty?
I think beauty is from within, it’s who you are. It’s about who the person is and how they think, how they treat people. That makes them a beautiful person. I don’t think it has anything to do with your height, your size, your weight, your color. It’s all to do with who you are, and I think that all good people are beautiful.
Check out Caroline’s beautiful dresses on her website, www.carolinecastigliano.com, and don’t miss the Royal Wedding coming up next Saturday, May 19th, covered by numerous news sources worldwide!
Photos by Caroline Castigliano and Emma Jones