Kate Middleton’s wedding dress: a fashion icon is born

In a traditional wedding, bride’s dress is always a terrible source of questioning: where did she buy it? How much did it cost? Does the colour is ivory, powdered or creamy white? Did she think of matching her shoes with? And, when finally the bride appears to the arm of his father, gossips are continuing even more: these gloves go to her delight, I like the lace but to cover all the dress with it is definitively too square, is not she breathless with her corset?

When you decided to get married in front of two billion of people, this is even worse. Human beings need to talk about questions so essential. What is the best way to do it in 2011? Watch the wedding with uncle Charly and aunt Eugénie, OR use social network. In this post, we are trying to discover how people can share their feelings, emotions and judgments about Kate Middleton’s dress by using Twitter or Facebook.

As we learned in reading this very interesting article about the “Digital Wedding” from Camille Hude, the royal wedding invaded Internet and the social networks. The story began on the 16th of November 2010, when Prince William and Miss Catherine Middleton announced their engagement in front of the subjects of the British monarchy. We could see the pictures of the future bridegrooms all around the world. The “fashion sphere” is in emotion in front of the dress worn by Kate. It was a navy blue dress in jersey silk, matched with her ring; Daniella Issa Helayel designed it. Fashion addicts discovered their new icon.


Since this day, speculations began about the dress Kate would be wearing for her marriage. The Facebook group “Kate Middleton’s Wedding Dress” was created the 17th of November 2010, one day after the royal engagement. Today, the group count 54’241 members.

The British began pretty quickly to bet about everything and nothing. They gambled more than 22 million on Internet. They could bet on the song that would open the ceremony, the colour of the Queen’s dress, the weather report on the D-Day, the kissing time between the lovers, etc. But most of the bets concerned the famous dress: which will be the length of the train, which will be its colour and its material, and, of course, which designer will create this object of covetousness. The British Monarchy tried to keep the secret and it was almost a success. The Sunday Times gave the noun of Alexander McQueen’s fashion house the 6th of March 2011. But the designer, Sarah Burton, lied and said that it was not true. So the bets were continuing until the D-Day, the 29th of April 2011.

(Royal wedding scoop: the discover that Sarah Burton will designe the wedding dress)

Apparently, Sarah Burton would keep the secret more than everything (Tweet from Vogue, 10th of May 2011):

We discovered also some “fakes”, for example in Facebook. It was a real challenge to finally see the dress. It instigated the greeds.


The D-Day

Since the morning of the wedding day, the Internet users were in place. They spoke about the weather, the dresses of the guests, about the people who travelled in masses to London.

The couple Victoria and David Beckham made a big impression and engendered numerous tweets when they arrived at 10.35 AM. The hat of Madam and the hair cut of Mister did not leave the commentators impassive.


As Camille Hude explained, the wedding fascinated the whole world. The newspaper Le Monde, for instance, sent one of its correspondents for use tweeter throughout the day (Héléne Bekmezian told her route through London and posted 41 tweets in this day).

A special French account, “KateMiddletonFR” was created to follow the slightest actions of the princess. France 2, the French television, conceived a special place on its website for the wedding. It was really interactive; the Internet users could ask questions and the channel answered them. At the same time, France 2 listed the most important tweets, from the BBC, the account “KateandWilliam2011”, iTV-news or ClarenceHouse.


At 11.51 AM, things became clearer when we perceived for the first time Kate going up in Rolls Royce to the church. People got crazy because they could just see her head and her bust; it was thus impossible to find out who was the famous artist who made the dress.


She arrived at Westminster at 12 AM. One of the official Twitter accounts of the monarchy, “ClarenceHouse” and the official Facebook’s page of the Monarchy confirmed that Sarah Burton, from the Alexander McQueen House, was the designer of the dress. On the television, the commentators specialized in the fashion gave their impressions and spoke very highly about the dress. They greeted the choice of Alexander McQueen’s House. The monarchy so paid tribute in one of its most talented stylist, died tragically last year. They were also admiring the elegance of the duchess of Cambridge. On internet, the reactions tell by thousands.

On the website of France 2:

First reactions (and first photo) on the “Kate Middleton’s wedding dress” on Facebook :

On the BBC (and also on the french TV), the “Yes” of the commentators before that of the bridegrooms:

Social networks became overexcited when people finally discovered the entire dress. Comments were very complimentary. Stunning, gorgeous or dazzling are probably the words mostly used by the Internet users. When we searched “Kate Middleton dress” on Facebook, we count 29 pages and groups. We only found two groups which were negatives: “Kate Middleton’s dress was $ 35’000, why? It was hideous” and “Kate Middleton’s dress was ugly”. The two groups have four members, so they are really marginal. Most of the spectators fell in love with Kate’s dress. It became a phenomenon; when we search “Wedding dress Kate Middleton”, we quickly find 6’000 stories about it on Digg.com.

In Switzerland, the dress was also awaited (Le Matin, the 20th of April 2011). So, for its report on the TV Journal, TSR (Télévision Suisse Romande) choose to focus on this aspect of the wedding.

Specialists, like fashion designers or editor in chief of fashion magazines, also gave their opinions about the dress (we did not find a negative one) on the different channels and on Internet :

“I like the dress very much, simpler than expected: a combination just in between Grace Kelly and Queen Elizabeth dress. I love the modest veil with the Queen Mother’s Thirties scroll tiara and balanced volume of the whole gown. She’s radiant; she never was so beautiful.” Christian Lacroix

As soon as Kate showed her costume, a parallel was drawn between hers and Grace Kelly’s.

With the dress-story, we understand the importance of the social media in this “Digital Wedding”. The dress of the bride was kept as a secret of state from the British Monarchy. The suspense to discover this one was present for every (TV or Internet) spectator; it was a real story into the wedding’s story. As for her engagement’s dress, many copies of the bridal dress were already found. Sarah Burton was assaulted by lots of young betrothed. And since the wedding day, Kate Middleton’s outfits are pursued and analyzed in greatest details. The wedding dress is probably the beginning of a (love) story between Kate and the fashion magazines.


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  1. #1 by Florence on May 14, 2011 - 18:49

    Cet article est génial et m’a appris énormément de choses concernant le fameux mariage royal. Je ne pensais vraiment pas qu’il y avait un tel engouement sur la robe de la mariée sur les réseaux sociaux ! Merci pour cet éclairage !

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