Who designed it?
In charge of whipping up the couture gown for her big day was Meghan Markle's wedding dress designer Clare Waight Keller, the artistic director for French fashion label Givenchy.
“Overall, the entire veil and dress took 3,900 hours to complete and 50 people working on it between the Givenchy atelier and the Lesage atelier,” says Caroline de Guitaut, the curator of the Windsor Castle exhibition “A Royal Wedding: The Duke and Duchess of Sussex”. Guitaut also says that the workers had to wash their hands every 20 minutes while working on the delicate veil.
What style of dress was it?
Meghan chose to wear a simple yet classic style for her wedding.
The bride's silk gown balanced the bare shoulders of the scooped neckline with demure three-quarter length sleeves, while the formality of the stiff dress was complemented by the loose updo of Meghan's hair.
The official website Royal.UK describes the dress as follows:
"True to the heritage of the house, the pure lines of the dress are achieved using six meticulously placed seams.
"The focus of the dress is the graphic open bateau neckline that gracefully frames the shoulders and emphasises the slender sculpted waist.
"The lines of the dress extend towards the back where the train flows in soft round folds cushioned by an underskirt in triple silk organza.
"The slim three-quarter sleeves add a note of refined modernity."
On top, the 5m long veil was embroidered with flowers from all 53 countries in the British Commonwealth and, as she did for Kate's wedding, Queen Elizabeth lent the bride a diamond tiara to go with the veil.
What materials was it made from?
According to Royal.UK, the outer shell of the dress featured "exclusive double bonded silk cady" with a "soft matt lustre" in a colour that was a pure tone of white, chosen by the future Duchess together with the designer to "bring a fresh modernity to the dress."
The underskirt was made of triple silk organza. Both fabrics were very stiff, meaning they had little stretch to allow for movement, so the fit had to be a little looser than would be expected from a fabric with more give.
The veil was made from silk tulle, embroidered with silk thread and organza, while the shoes were made from silk duchess satin.
How much did it cost?
Well that's the big question.
While at first glance the dress appears simple, with no hand-beading or lace appliqués that can drive up the price of a wedding frock, the fit of a dress made from such stiff material would have been difficult, requiring many adjustments. And at the end of the day, it is still a Givenchy couture gown, which you would expect to have a price tag to match.
There is a school of thought that believes that Meghan wouldn't have wanted to outdo her sister-in-law Kate, whose dress was estimated to have cost between $200,000 - $350,000. But, according to Money.com, the price tag for Kim Kardashian's Givenchy wedding dress was said to have been around the half mil mark, back in 2014. So perhaps Meghan's came in at a similar figure.
“The gown is exquisite in its fit, and the fabric drapes perfectly. While it isn’t beaded or embellished, the attention to detail and, of course, Givenchy price tag surely make this gown extremely lux,” stylist Samantha Brown tells Money.com. “
Elle Australia reports an upper limit of $500,000 for Meghan's dress.
It would seem that much like the wedding itself, which broke from tradition with its more casual nature - not to mention a gospel choir and a sermon from an American pastor - Meghan was very involved in the design of her dress.
“I wanted a female designer, that was very important, I wanted a British designer because I wanted to embrace my new home in that way,” Meghan says in the A Royal Wedding exhibition audio recording.
Royal.UK reports that after meeting Givenchy's Clare Waight Keller, Meghan "chose to work with her for her timeless and elegant aesthetic, impeccable tailoring, and relaxed demeanour. Ms. Markle also wanted to highlight the success of a leading British talent who has now served as the creative head of three globally influential fashion houses – Pringle of Scotland, Chloé, and now Givenchy.
"Ms. Markle and Ms. Waight Keller worked closely together on the design. The dress epitomises a timeless minimal elegance referencing the codes of the iconic House of Givenchy and showcasing the expert craftsmanship of its world-renowned Parisian couture atelier founded in 1952," the website continues.
It also states that representing every country of the Commonwealth in her outfit was also Meghan's idea.
What was the public’s reaction to the dress?
The reaction to the dress was mixed, with singer Katy Perry famously saying, "I would have done one more fitting. I'm never not going to tell the truth! One more fitting, but I love you."
Some members of the public were not inspired. "I'm just so underwhelmed right now," wrote one and "Why is dress so plain and not well fitted?" said another.
And the Mail on Sunday is reported as saying "The Queen is said to have expressed surprise that Meghan, a divorcee, wore quite such a white dress for her wedding."
But the fashion world seemed more in favour of the clean lines and elegance of the dress. The New York Times said "it was everything people had hoped."
"What was most noticeable were all the things that the dress was not. It was not a Hollywood red-carpet statement. It was not a Disney-princess fantasy. It was not a mountain of camouflaging tulle and chiffon," said The Washington Post.
"It was a romantic dress, but one that suggested a clear-eyed understanding that a real-life romance is not the stuff of fairy tales," it continued.
Was it similar to any other celebrities wedding dresses?
Princess Charlene of Monaco
She was also a commoner who married a prince, and Meghan's dress harks back to the one chosen by former Olympic swimmer Charlene Wittstock for her 2011 marriage to Prince Albert of Monaco.
"The idea was to go for a completely modern look, without an obvious sense of nostalgia or revivalism," said designer Giorgio Armani to Vogue.
Like Meghan, Princess Eugenie chose a white dress with an unusual bridal neckline and an A-line frame to marry her man, Jack Brooksbank in October 2018.
"The dress features a neckline that folds around the shoulders to a low back that drapes into a flowing full length train," reports Royal.uk.
"The low back feature on the dress was at the specific request of Princess Eugenie who had surgery aged 12 to correct scoliosis," it continues of the design by British fashionista Peter Pilotto.