Roberto de Villacis is an internationally recognized haute couture designer/artist to movie stars, royalty, art collectors, and global A-listers. First discovered in Paris by Karl Lagerfeld after graduating from the famed Paris fashion school, Studio Berçot, Villacis has worked as creative fashion director and consultant for leading European luxury brands including Missoni, Blumarine, L’Oreal and Lancome. He took the fashion world by storm in 2002, founding the cult European fashion brand, Trash Couture.
This weekend on May 19, royal history will unfold in stately style at Windsor Castle, as the world’s most eligible bachelor, HRH Prince Harry of Wales, gets married. Harry is the youngest son of Charles, Prince of Wales, and the late Diana, Princess of Wales, and is currently the sixth in line to the British throne. The handsome prince will tie the knot with the American beauty, Meghan Markle, a Hollywood starlet and social activist set on empowering women through education and battling HIV.
We can wager that there will not be a dry eye Saturday in St. George’s chapel among the ladies of society in what is to be an intimate royal affair for close family, friends and a suite of colorful characters from all stretches of the realm and the Atlantic. Personally, I can’t wait to see the boys’ first cousins… especially Lady Kitty Spencer and her sisters.
It is fascinating to see how Prince Harry will follow in his mother’s footsteps by bringing love, laughter, and light to the Royal House of Windsor. Let’s not forget that the Windsors are a Germanic branch of the house of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha a.k.a Arctic love…Brrrr.
Breaking with English royal snobbery and just pure racism, Prince Harry will tie the royal knot—luckily with her Majesty’s consent, no less—to wed his true love, Meghan Markle, who is divorced and of mixed race, something that would have disqualified her from royal status just a few generations ago.
So what is so special about this royal match? After all, it is William who will be King.
Clearly royal—or let’s say social—history is being re-written this weekend with this match due to its simplicity: love conquers over the complex dynamics of a wedding between a British royal and a foreign citizen. Most British subjects have succumbed to Meghan’s charm, and her relatable persona is bringing a much-needed breath of fresh air to the monarchy, which is looking for ways to remain relevant in a new era.
As for the Markle family, her lovely mother Doria Ragland is your archetypical Californian, an African-American woman who up to now was teaching healthy lifestyle practices and yoga. Even after Meghan’s entry into the royal household, her mother will continue to help with her philanthropic work. This is a major landmark in royal marriages.
On a different note, our prayers for a quick recovery go out to her adoring father Thomas Markle, who will not be able to attend due to health reasons. Our sympathies to his ‘press debacle’ which caused a royal faux pas, but we all know how the press works. For this reason, all eyes are set on whom will walk Meghan down the aisle on her wedding day. The royal bets are that it might even be Prince Charles, while some say her mother or no-one at all as she strides down the ultimate red carpet into the sanctity of history.
How did this all start? It was a blind date, not a bland date… Get it, girls and boys?
I think they both had enough dates and experiences that their real concern was not what they would wear or any of the specifics on their special day. Besides, they probably both look better naked than dressed up anyway. Both young and beautiful, court gossip has it that Harry is as tall as a Scottish mountain, and, well, Meagan is shaped like a fine mist of soothing tropical delights.
So why are some feathers ruffled by the true love between a royal prince and an American divorced actress? Scandalous? Court rumors say she has a job, she’s from the gangs of LA and yes, she is even multi-racial. You can say what you want about Meghan Markle, but in all honesty, she is a true beauty and an outspoken champion for women’s empowerment and battling HIV/AIDS, something that has earned her the adoration of the British public and reminds us of her likeness to the Prince’s mother. If I believed in reincarnation, Meghan is the true spirit of the House of Spencer with the blessing of Princess Diana.
The couple has channeled many of Di’s favorite principles and traits that will guide them at their wedding and in marital life. White English country roses, open carriage rides, fairy-tale dresses, regal bling, great music, and iconic guests like Sir Elton John, a living legend who was very close to Princess Diana.
Who would have guessed that Princess Di’s shy ginger baby would become a strapping, hunky lad with movie star looks, and true British character created on and off the battlefield in Her Majesty’s service? By all accounts across the kingdom, Prince Harry is the coolest of the royal line and his marriage to Meghan Markle has made him even more popular among his subjects.
And now, the fashion…
As we all know, part of the pomp and ceremony of a royal affair of this magnitude is the fashion. This will be the ultimate red carpet of the season. What should we expect on the style front?
Well, what I can predict as a purveyor myself of couture to the royal courts of Europe and India, is that the entire affair will be haunted by double trouble, the late Alexander McQueen, and the late Isabella “Issy” Blow. Most people have heard of McQueen and fashionistas, of course, and know that Issy discovered McQueen at his graduation show at London College. What I am sure of is that they never left us. They may be six feet under but their genius and collaborations are imbued in fashion as much as history.
If we want to understand the complexity of royal wedding etiquette, we must start at the beginning of royal fashion post-Diana.
By all accounts, at the last royal wedding, where Prince William wed Lady Kate, the fashion stars were McQueen and Philip Treacy. For this one, Philip will rest the uncrowned king of “crowns,” for his fabulous hats and fascinators, and McQueen will certainly design something from the other side for one of the royals, as his label will surely produce some beautiful gowns for the family.
Now the real question: what will Meagan wear? I dare say it is not going to be as spectacular as we think. She is part of the American bourgeoisie by upbringing but never boring. Her taste will, unfortunately, be very girly, pretty, and tame.
Shame, because she really could do something fun and spectacular. But who knows? Maybe she will give us a fashion moment, and instead of going for the obvious designers she has worked with before, she might choose the twin designers from the commonwealth, Canada. Of course, I mean the identical twins Dean and Dan, better known as D Squared, one of the hippest and future-looking mega-brands of the Empire. These designers have a good track record for wedding dresses, as they designed Posh’s gown for her wedding with David Beckham, and they are still together.
Obviously, I am cheering for this dark horse designer duo as I know them from their early days in Milan, and from participating in a Bravo TV show with them. They really deserve it, and it would be great for Canada.
If it were up to me, I would love to see her in something like this.
My wager for the most stylish group would be, once again, Princess Di’s family. The Spencer’s roots trace back to the 15th century, and the family claims Winston Churchill as part of the clan. They are not royal, but in a way, they could not be more regal, which is why Lady Diana was chosen for her genes.
Prince Harry’s first cousins include the ravishingly beautiful Lady Kitty, and her twin sisters, Lady Eliza and Lady Katya Amelia. They have all caught the media spotlight and adoration of fashionistas for their bold and stylish looks. Also look out for Princess Eugenia, who is as adorable and sweet as she looks, and one of the late editor Isabella Blow’s discoveries, by having her photographed for the very first time in true high glamour for Tatler.
It will be an endless stream of visual eye candy as striking hats and fascinators will take center stage from afar. But it is the family jewels that everyone has dusted off to wear that will really capture my eye at this formal occasion. As such, I can’t wait to see what jewels Prince Harry will wear with his regal captain’s uniform. Or is there a secret McQueen morning coat in the works? The irony is that McQueen worked for the English tailor Huntsman at some point for training, and wrote a very nice FU in the lining of Prince Charles’ new suit.
Yes, Meghan is going to beautiful in her gown (or two) as she could literally wear a queen size white sheet, wrap it like a bustier dress, belt it with a diamond belt, throw a veil on it and run down St. George’s chapel to Harry’s arms and Harry really wouldn’t give a damn . That’s how beautiful she is to His Royal Highness. British protocol indicates that the Queen must approve the dress that the future princess will wear. But instead of pleasing the Queen, we may see a very pretty, slim, minimalist and romantic dress with a 15-foot train in duchess satin and lace. The tiara lent by the Queen will set off her splendid complexion and coiffed braided hair. Hopefully, some spring flowers will be added to the diamond-studded tiara to symbolize a spring love (we know her favorite flowers are peonies).
What will also be very exciting to see is the pageantry and ceremony of this holy occasion. In lieu of ladies in waiting, the mini royals will carry the rings, flowers, and train. They are the ones to be casting your vote for stealing the show.
I also wage it is Harry who will outshine in royal style with his chesterfield smile under the loving guise of Princess Diana in all the small touching moments they have dedicated to her on this joyful occasion.
The new generations of royals owe their very smart style to England’s magical artists and artisans like Isie and her babies, Alexander McQueen and Philip Treacy, among others.
The couple has asked that anyone who might wish to mark the occasion of their wedding considers giving to charity, instead of sending a gift. “The couple have personally chosen 7 charities which represent a range of issues they are passionate about,” the palace says, “including sport for social change, women’s empowerment, conservation, the environment, homelessness, HIV and the Armed Forces.” ■