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Many considered the royal wedding between Kate Middleton and Prince William the wedding of the century. And perhaps one of the most memorable parts of the wedding day was Kate Middleton’s wedding dress.
That said, the dress we saw her walk down the aisle in was actually one of two wedding dresses. And, while it was absolutely stunning, the duchess didn’t stay in her ceremony dress for long.
Read on to learn more about Kate Middleton’s second wedding dress, plus some interesting details of her wedding day look.
The ceremony dress
There’s no doubt that the gown was stunning. | Ben Stansall/AFP/Getty Images
Designed by Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen, Kate Middleton’s wedding dress was a perfect mix of royal tradition and modern style. The dress combined a mix of white and ivory fabrics, intricate lace detailing, and a 9-foot long train. But, that’s not all.
From the reason she wore sleeves to how she incorporated something borrowed, something new, and something blue, we share some of the most fascinating details of Middleton’s wedding dress, plus unveil her second wedding dress, ahead.
Next: The surprising reason why the sleeves mattered so much
Why the sleeves mattered
The sleeves were equal parts traditional and modern. | Ben Stansall/AFP/Getty Images
The sleeves were a key part of the dress’s design. And it wasn’t just because they offered beautiful lace detailing, but also because they paid homage to past royal weddings, including Grace Kelly’s and Queen Elizabeth II’s.
In addition to its royal tribute, the design featured a mix of 1950s bridal style and modernity that helped emulate Kate Middleton’s wish to keep within tradition yet add some modern flair.
Next: The queen let her borrow about 1,000 diamonds to complete her stunning look.
Her something borrowed was fit for a queen
Her gorgeous tiara was fit for a queen. | Leon Neal/AFP/Getty Images
As for her something borrowed? The queen let her future granddaughter-in-law borrow one of her tiaras. The Cartier halo tiara was given to the queen on her 18th birthday and includes about 1,000 diamonds.
Next: You couldn’t even see her something blue, but it was there.
Her secret something blue, revealed
She had her something blue tucked into the dress. | Dimitar Dilkoff/AFP/Getty Images
Think the bride walked down the aisle without her something blue? Think again! Alexander McQueen designer Sarah Burton sewed a piece of blue ribbon to the inside of the royal bride’s dress for purity, love, and fidelity (and for good luck).
Next: The Middleton family crest made a royal appearance.
Her diamond earrings resembled the Middleton family crest
The earrings resembled their crest. | Ben Stansall/AFP/Getty Images
As for her something new, Middleton’s parents gifted the bride with diamond earrings. But, these weren’t just any earrings. With acorn and oak leaf motifs, they resembled her family’s crest.
Next: The amazing details of the wedding dress went far beyond the surface.
The dress’s detail didn’t stop at the surface
The padding below the corset emphasized her tiny waist. | Carl De Souza/AFP/Getty Images
Underneath its lace surface, Kate Middleton’s wedding dress featured subtle padding in her midsection to complement the design’s corset-style bodice.
In addition, the underskirt structure was just as beautiful as the outside of the skirt. With layers upon layers of lace-trimmed silk tulle, when her sister lifted the dress’s 9-foot train, you could see the resemblance of an opening flower underneath.
That said, Kate Middleton’s second wedding dress looked a lot different — and less detailed — than her ceremony dress.
Next: The second wedding dress is revealed.
Her second wedding dress
Kate had two dresses fit for a princess. | John Stillwell – WPA Pool/Getty Images
As a modern princess (and bride) Middleton’s ceremony dress featured elaborate detailing and royal traditions without going full-blown Victorian on us. That said, the duchess switched into an even more modern — and more true to her style — wedding dress for the reception.
Kate Middleton’s second wedding dress was also by Alexander McQueen and featured a more simple take with satin fabric, a circle skirt (goodbye 9-foot train!), a flattering sweetheart neckline, and a diamante belt at the waist. She topped things off with a fuzzy shrug and even let her hair down!
Next: Kate Middleton’s other best fashion moments, starting with her sister’s wedding
Pippa Middleton’s wedding
Formal doesn’t have to equal boring. | Arthur Edwards/WPA Pool/Getty Images
Who can forget the outfit Kate wore to Pippa’s wedding? She wore a blush pink puff-sleeved dress by Alexander McQueen and nude pointed court shoes. The duchess topped off the ensemble with a fabulous hat fit for royalty and Kiki McDonough earrings.
She was easily considered one of the best dressed at the wedding.
Next: A visit to a museum never looked so good.
Her visit to the Natural History Museum in July 2017
Kate loves to experiment with bright colors. | Yui Mok/WPA Pool/Getty Images
In July 2017, Middleton visited the Natural History Museum in London wearing a blue Preen dress by Thornton Bregazzi, black Prada sandals, and a purple Jerome Rousseau clutch.
Middleton is a Royal Patron of the Natural History Museum and was in attendance to celebrate the unveiling of the new whale skeleton named Hope in the Museum’s Hintze Hall.
Next: An adorable polka-dot dress for a good cause
Her trip to The Foundling Museum
Her modest dress looked amazing on her. | Chris Jackson/Getty Images
On Nov. 28, 2017, Middleton visited The Foundling Museum to tour the facility and play with the nursery children. She looked absolutely adorable in a polka-dot, vintage-styled Kate Spade dress. She rounded out the outfit with some maroon suede pumps.
Next: She definitely knows how to wear a beautiful blue dress.
Another beautiful Jenny Packham dress
She loves wearing pastels. | Arthur Edwards/AFP/Getty Images
Middleton attended the Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition at the Natural History Museum in London back in 2014 (it was the competition’s 50th anniversary). She presented the award to 9-year-old Carlos Naval.
She looked gorgeous in yet another pastel blue Jenny Packham dress and L.K. Bennett Agata bow sandals.
Next: An interesting black velvet piece
Black velvet if you please
She stole the show with this gown. | John Stillwell/PA Wire
In December 2011, Middleton wore a very chic black velvet Alexander McQueen gown to The Sun‘s Military Awards in London.
“Kate’s black Alexander McQueen gown – the same designer as her wedding dress – had frill trim around the bust and a fishtail-style skirt,” said Daily Mail. “It was so long on the five-foot, 10-inch Duchess, that she had to keep hitching it up to keep it from scraping on the ground.”
Next: A Prada dress to show a symbol of remembrance
Her poppy print Prada dress
She has tons of fun prints in her closet. | Chris Jackson/Getty Images
In August 2017, Middleton wore a bright and cheery poppy print Prada dress with nude pumps to visit the Sunken Garden at Kensington Palace to honor Princess Diana, just a day before the anniversary of her death. Middleton wore poppies as a symbol of remembrance.
“It’s most closely associated with Remembrance Day in the U.K., akin to Veteran’s Day, a November holiday commemorating those who died in WWI,” says USA Today.
Next: A stunning vintage gown for a charity event
Kate’s youthful Amanda Wakeley gown
A gorgeous and stunning dress | Popsugar Entertainment via YouTube
In October 2011, Middleton wore a vintage Amanda Wakeley gown to a charity gala at Clarence House in London. The Huffington Post noted that the duchess could be seen “glad-handing and preening in a gorgeous mint green (or is it seafoam?), empire-waist dress with sexy straps.”
She wore her hair half-up to show off a pair of gorgeous diamond earrings.
Next: Kate can also pull off a bright red look.
Kate in bright red
The duchess knows what looks good on her. | Chris Jackson/Getty Images
Light blue may be Kate’s go-to color, but she can definitely pull off a bright, passionate red as well. In April 2017, the duchess wore a tight Armani skirt suit and beige Rupert Sanderson pumps to the opening of The Global Academy.
“The skirt set had a few sportswear influences, including a zippered front and dart detailing along the bodice, but the overall fit and finish was polished—a departure from previous suits by Luisa Spagnoli and Philosophy di Lorenzo Serafini, which felt more military-inspired,” said Vogue.
Additional reporting by Kelsey Goeres.
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