Over the years, everything about weddings has become increasingly expensive; from the venue to the flowers, the dress worn by a bride has also increased in price. For a royal bride, millions around the world stop what they’re doing to watch the wedding ceremony and all eyes are on the wedding dress. But who had the most expensive royal wedding dress ever? Express.co.uk spoke to stylist Melita Latham about the gowns chosen by Princess Diana, Kate Middleton, Meghan Markle, and Queen Letizia for when they walked down the aisle.
Diana, Princess of Wales’ iconic wedding dress is currently on display at Kensington Palace.
The dress has been loaned for members of the public to see if up close.
It was designed by David and Elizabeth Emanuel for Diana’s July 1981 wedding to Prince Charles.
The gown features a 25ft (7.6m) sequin-encrusted train, which filled the aisle of St Paul’s Cathedral.
It had a fitted bodice overlaid with panels of antique Carrickmacross lace originally belonging to Queen Mary.
As well as the nod to history, it was very much in keeping with early 1980s fashion as it featured large puffed sleeves trimmed with bows and deep ruffles of taffeta.
It reportedly cost around £10,000 to make but was valued at £150,000 a few years ago.
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The Duchess of Cambridge’s dress took millions of viewers’ breaths away.
It was designed by Sarah Burton at Alexander McQueen for her 2011 wedding to Prince William.
“Miss Middleton chose British brand Alexander McQueen for the beauty of its craftsmanship and its respect for traditional workmanship and the technical construction of clothing,” the Palace revealed in a statement on William and Kate’s wedding day.
“Miss Middleton wished for her dress to combine tradition and modernity with the artistic vision that characterises Alexander McQueen’s work.”
The bodice of the dress was inspired by Victorian tradition of corsetry, meaning it narrowed at the waist and was padded slightly below the midsection.
The train was nearly nine feet long, or two metres and 70cm long.
Kate’s gown also featured 58 gazar and organza-covered buttons on the back, which were fastened by rouleau loops.
As for how much the dress cost to make, a price tag of £250,000 has been put on it.
The Duchess of Sussex opted for a simple yet elegant wedding dress for her wedding to Prince Harry.
The dress was designed by Clare Waight Keller, artistic director Givenchy.
The fashion house spent 3,000 hours embroidering Meghan’s 16-feet long veil with the national flowers of each of the 53 commonwealth countries including real crops of wheat.
The dress, on the other hand, was created using double-bonded silk cady cushioned by an underskirt of triple silk organza.
Kensington Palace explained: “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 emphasizes the slender sculpted waist.
“The slim three-quarter sleeves add a note of refined modernity.”
It reportedly cost £110,000 of which Meghan paid for herself.
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Melita spoke about the royal bride’s dress choices.
She said: “Thousands of hours went into making these iconic wedding dresses.
“From embroidered flowers of all 53 commonwealth countries for Meghan’s wedding dress, embellishing with beads, lace and pearls, 10,000 on Princess Diana’s dress and Kate Middleton’s nine feet train.
“[And] I can’t imagine how many hours it took embroidering real gold into silk [for Queen Letizia’s dress].”
“If we look at cost, in my opinion, today Diana’s dress is worth so much more than any real gold embroidered dress,” Melita added. “It’s in the history books. It’s priceless.”