Designers React to Royal Wedding Dress

Praise for design worn by Catherine Middleton from Karl Lagerfeld, Christian Lacroix, Hubert de Givenchy, Donatella Versace, Viktor & Rolf and Elie Saab.

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PARIS — Designers around the world tuned into the watch the royal wedding, and discover Catherine Middleton’s dress by Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen.


Many cited likeness to bridal gowns worn by Queen Elizabeth and Grace Kelly, and remarked on its traditional allure.

Broadcasting live on France 2 television, Karl Lagerfeld said: “She is very elegant. The dress is classic and goes very well in the Westminster decor. It almost reminds me of (Queen) Elizabeth’s wedding, the royal weddings in the Fifties. The proportion of the train is good. The lace is very pretty. I like the veil a lot.”


Here’s what other designers had to say:


Carolina Herrera: “The dress was absolutely perfect for her. The important thing was that she looked as though she felt very comfortable and moved very well in it. The dress didn’t move. I loved the long sleeves, the lace, the short veil with the little tiara and her hair. If I have to rate her from one to 10, I give her an 11. It was beyond.”


Catherine Malandrino: “I thought it was great that she chose an iconic British name. I also like that they used the Royal School of Needlework for the lace. I felt the dress was simple, effortless and and regal.”


Vera Wang: “This was great for Sarah Burton, and whether it was intentional or accidental, everything worked. It is amazing and wonderful for someone who does not usually do wedding dresses to show such restraint. The dress was cut beautifully, in a subdued way. I found the fitted lace bodice and the fairly large skirt, without tiers or technical draping, just right — a modern version of a tradition that will never be outdated. I would have preferred a closed neckline, however. To me, the veil, often an afterthought, is as important as the dress. Kate’s was perfect — not decorated, trimmed or gathered. And because the blusher had no volume, no wrinkles were over the face. It added mystery and allowed the bride to arrive covered and leave with her face framed. I did not think she would go fashion-forward but rather to send a message far beyond fashion: [William and Kate] want to be taken seriously; they know they will become the King and Queen of England and are up to the job of embracing everything that comes with the monarchy. And with that, naturally, there had to be some pomp and circumstance — but it was all with great dignity and discipline, reflecting the British culture. Yet it was so romantic and seemed to reflect their love for, and future with, one another.”


Rebecca Taylor: "Kate’s dress was beautiful, demure and youthful. Her veil was soft and pretty, but I would have liked to see more volume. The heirloom tiara added the perfect amount of sparkle fit for a modern day princess. Kate kept it traditional with her Cartier 1936 tiara as her 'something old' and Diana's blue sapphire ring as her 'something blue.' She is lovely and he is a great prince, I wish them both good luck!”


Monique Lhuillier: “I was beyond thrilled when I heard Sarah Burton had done the dress. She has really picked up the pieces and has resurged the house. The selection of the designer also shows she takes risks and that’s terrific. The best accessory was the sparkle in her eyes. You could see the love between them in how they looked at eachother. Despite having two billion watching. It was still their moment.”


Prabal Gurung: “I thought it was pretty and appropriate. A high-profile wedding like this is not the place for making a crazy fashion moment. It sounds like an oxymoron but it was a personal moment in a very public place. The dress clearly said she’s a modern girl and of this generation. It was not McQueen at its theatrical sense but McQueen in its quiet but beautiful sense. I loved the bustle and how her silk tulle veil was moving softly in the wind.”


Jason Wu: “I thought Catherine’s dress looked stunning. The details were very well done and I loved the emphasis on craftsmanship and the use of British talent. Her choice to pay tribute to Alexander McQueen was both touching and exciting.”


Isaac Mizrahi: “I loved the dress. I like plain things a lot right now so this was a winner. It moved beautifully and really flattered her figure. She looked gorgeous.”


Diane von Furstenberg: “The dress was beautiful. I think she is irresistible, she is so beautiful. I am happy it was McQueen. It was absolutely the right thing to do. They made [the dress] simple, so it wasn’t costumey but a beautiful evening gown. I was happy for Sarah, happy for the Met, and happy for McQueen.


Lela Rose: “She looked beautiful and is beautiful, and the dress had nothing to fault. But I was a little disappointed that it was so traditional in the choice of lace, fabric, style and shape. That lace has been so done and used. It didn’t look modern to me. I expected more from Sarah Burton but the again it wasn’t Sarah Burton’s wedding dress. She really had to follow protocol and do what Kate wanted and I am sure the queen had input too.”


Agnès b.: “Last night before nodding off to sleep, different wedding dresses went through my head and I settled on the one worn by the Princess Grace of Monaco, thinking that it could have been updated with perhaps a v-neck! And to my delight I find today that Catherine, the charming Duchess of Cambridge, has turned my nocturnal musings into the essence of elegance thanks to Sarah Burton. I found all of the guests beautifully attired, and as for the hats! It is surely only in England that they are so diverse and are worn so well.”


Chris Benz: “I did not know what to expect. She came out so fresh and elegant! I loved the length of the train and the fact that there was nothing over-the-top about the whole look. Her hair down was perfect, not too fuzzy. I loved the whole spirit of it — kept it from looking too old-fashioned. The deep V felt really special, kind of sexy bride. And I loved William, the bright red was charming and youthful in spirit.”


Carolina Amato: “Of course I would have loved to see Kate wearing gloves on her wedding day but I wasn’t disappointed to see her choice of attire. I loved the exquisite lace on the bodice and sleeves and the neckline cut in a perfect V. It was a classic, lovely choice; it fit her beautifully and her happiness emanated from her entire body. She seemed very comfortable but poised — a perfect vision of loveliness.”


Amy Smilovic, Tibi: “Kate looked supremely elegant and in keeping with her personal style that she has portrayed over the years. I think her confidence in Sarah Burton’s design showed – and your wedding day is the day more than ever that you want to feel absolutely sure of your style. For me personally, I would have loved to have had the skirt exaggerated in the true McQueen style, but I get why the dress absolutely worked for Kate and she looked stunning and regal.”


Nicole Miller: “The fit was amazing. It looked like it was second skin the way the lace layed so well. I was really impressed. It’s funny in Sarah Burton’s fall show for McQueen, she had five or six dresses at the end. I remember thinking, ‘What’s that about?’ The wedding must have been in the back of her mind.”


Eddie Borgo: “The lace was perfect, and I especially loved the Cartier tiara — and to learn of its history.”


Kara Ross: “Kate’s simple Victorian-style earrings and vintage Cartier tiara were the perfect complement to her elegant McQueen gown. As an avid vintage collector, I had particular appreciation for the ‘halo’ tiara – I felt it was a special way to honor both the Queen and tradition.”


Tory Burch: “Kate looked stunning. Choosing Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen reflects Kate’s modern aesthetic and style, but the handmade lace details and craftsmanship are a great nod to British tradition. The lace, the clean lines of the dress, Queen Elizabeth’s tiara — every detail was stunning.”


Donna Karan: “The dress was extremely elegant. For me, it wasn’t so much about the dress though, it was all about her. She was the most beautiful bride in the world.”


Francisco Costa: “Kate’s dress had a classic elegance with a modern edge. The superb detailing really characterized Sarah’s expert hand.”


Cynthia Rowley: “I love it: McQueen for the Queen! The dress has really beautiful intricacies, but its silhouette is classic and restrained, and highlights Kate’s beauty rather than overshadowing it. With all of the anticipation, she was so smart to go with something so understated. I love the details that were attended to as well — she’s even holding Lily-of-the-Valley — a May flower.”

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