Meghan Markle’s Wedding Dress Designer Clare Waight Keller Leaves Givenchy

meghan markle wedding dress designer claire waight keller

What do Meghan Markle, Audrey Hepburn and Kim Kardashian have in common? They were all married in dresses created by the fashion house Givenchy, where head designer Clare Waight Keller just announced she's stepping down.

Waight Keller, a British native, spent six months in 2018 designing Markle's iconic and elegant gown out of pure white silk with an open neckline and A-line skirt. On Friday, Waight Keller announced via Instagram “From the heart ♥️ After three truly wonderful years, the time has come to close my chapter at Givenchy,” according to a caption on her personal account. “As the first woman to be the Artistic Director of this legendary Maison, I feel honoured to have been given the opportunity to cherish its legacy and bring it new life.”

In her three years as artistic director at the house, she's become a Hollywood favorite. Gal Gadot, Rachel Weisz, Rooney Mara, Julianne Moore, Charlize Theron and Grimes have worn her designs on the red carpet. And even after her wedding, Markle sported Givenchy dresses, bags and shoes to important events. Waight Keller's designs are popular with the guys, too—Rami Malek frequently wears Givenchy menswear.

Sidney Toledano, the chairman and CEO of LVMH’s fashion group, wished the designer well in a public statement: “Under her creative leadership, and in great collaboration with its ateliers and teams, the maison reconnected with the founding values of Hubert de Givenchy and his innate sense of elegance.” But really, Waight Keller's shining moment will always be The Wedding Dress (yes, the royal one). Its careful construction belies a real sophistication, as detailed in a Givenchy release from that time: “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 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.” Even Markle's wedding shoes were by the famous French house, “based on a Givenchy refined pointed couture design made of a silk duchess satin.”

As for working with the Duchess of Sussex, Waight Keller characterized Markle as a “strong woman” in an interview with Vogue. “It was really an absolute joy working with her.” Markle, it seems, returns the love: She presented Waight Keller with the Womenswear Designer of the Year award at The Fashion Awards in London, accompanying the award with a large and heartfelt hug.

dana dickey

Senior Editor

Dana Dickey is a PureWow Senior Editor, and during more than a decade in digital media, she has scoped out and tested top products and services across the lifestyle space...