Kate Middleton and Prince William: A look at their 2020 highlights
Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, and Prince William will undoubtedly be looking forward to celebrating their 10th wedding anniversary in April. Although initially considered a “reluctant royal” due to her shy nature and fear of public speaking, Kate has blossomed into one of the key figures of the Royal Family over the last few years. She and her husband have been at the forefront of the Firm’s response to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and have helped raise morale across the UK.
However, Kate had a rocky start to life on the royal frontline when she struggled to maintain a sense of privacy.
She was reportedly in tears when she found out details of her bespoke, high-end wedding dress had been leaked before the nuptials.
The Duchess of Cambridge had tried to keep the name of the designer, Alexander McQueen’s Sarah Burton, secret but it was soon revealed.
The Sunday Times reported at the time: “A fashion source said that the dress will be a combination of Middleton’s own design ideas and Burton’s deep knowledge and understanding of high fashion.”
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Royal correspondent Katie Nicholl said: “Behind the scenes I think that caused tears at the Palace because Kate had done everything she could to keep the wedding dress a secret.”
However, Ms Burton denied having any knowledge of the dress until Kate’s designer arrived at Westminster Abbey, where the ivory gown with lace sleeves wowed crowds.
Kate supposedly spotted Ms Burton’s work when she attended the wedding between Camilla Parker Bowles’ son, Tom, and his bride, Sara Buys in 2005.
Kate is not the first royal bride who was keen to keep her wedding dress a secret.
Her late mother-in-law Princess Diana caused an international stir when she debuted her dress at her 1981 wedding.
The designers even destroyed their sketches of the dress straight after they had shown them to Diana, so that there was no danger of them being revealed early.
They also made a back-up dress which was exceptionally similar using the same ivory silk taffeta.
Yet, in the decoy dress they made sure there was no lace — which was one of the defining features of Diana’s outfit.
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Designers David and Elizabeth Emanuel were desperate to keep the real outfit a secret, but only ended up making three quarters of the decoy dress.
Elizabeth told People Magazine in 2011: “At the time we wanted to make absolutely sure that the dress was a surprise.
“We didn’t try it on Diana. We never even discussed [the decoy].
“We wanted to make sure that we had something there; it was for our own peace of mind, really.”
However, the second dress disappeared mysteriously in the run-up to the wedding, and the designers are reportedly still yet to find it.
There has been a spate of royal weddings in recent years where brides have astonished fans with their intricate and luxurious dresses.
Prince Harry’s wedding to Meghan Markle in 2018 saw her wear two different dresses for the occasion, while Princess Eugenie wed her long-term boyfriend Jack Brooksbank a little later that same year, in an off-the-shoulder number.
Princess Beatrice got married last summer, after her first lavish wedding was called off due to lockdown restrictions.
The surprise ceremony was small and low-key.
The royal even changed which dress she wanted to wear at the last minute, donning her grandmother the Queen’s old evening gown with alterations instead.
This move was praised up and down the country for reflecting the more pensive and family-orientated mood which has gripped the UK over the last year.
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