Entertainment Celebrity Meghan plays supporting role at the 2018 British Fashion Awards
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Meghan plays supporting role at the 2018 British Fashion Awards

Cindy Crawford Kaia Gerber
Cindy Crawford and Kaia Gerber showcase their gene pool at the British Fashion Awards on December 10. Photo: Getty
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Even with that rapidly growing baby bump, Meghan Markle played a mere supporting role at the British Fashion Awards on Monday night (British time.)

The red carpet at London’s Royal Albert Hall was arguably the best of 2018, putting even the Met Gala and its stylised extravagance on notice.

Designers including Victoria Beckham, Roksanda Ilinicic and Vivienne Westwood rubbed shoulders at the awards and lavish after-party with Hollywood stars Uma Thurman and Penelope Cruz and the world’s top models, among them Sudanese Australian Alek Wek.

There was restraint, excess, little black dresses and gowns that were waterfalls of colour.

The Duchess of Sussex chose a one-shoulder black Givenchy dress with Tamara Mellon heels and Pippa Small cuff bracelet, for her unheralded drive-by appearance at the event.

Hair pulled back in a low bun similar to Kendall Jenner’s look, Meghan continually cradled her stomach as she honoured her wedding dress designer – Clare Waight Keller, artistic director of Givenchy – with the British womenswear designer of the year award.

Meghan, 37, whose surprise entrance onstage drew applause from the A-list crowd when she was introduced by Gone Girl star Rosamund Pike, made sure she wasn’t purely decorative.

After saying it was “such an honour” to celebrate fashion and designers “in my new home”, she used the platform to talk about fashion’s role in making women strong.

“As all of you in this room know, we have a deep connection to what we wear. Sometimes it’s very personal, sometimes it’s emotional,” the duchess said.

“But for me this connection is rooted in, really, being able to understand that it’s about supporting and empowering each other, especially as women.”

Duchess of Sussex
The Duchess of Sussex is reportedly due to give birth about April 2019. Photo: Getty

Waight Keller thanked “amazing” Meghan for trusting her to design her wedding dress dress.

“I got to know Meghan on such a personal level. I can’t thank you enough because it was the most beautiful moment.”

With her 1990s supermodel mother Cindy Crawford, father Rande Gerber and model brother Presley in the audience, Kaia Gerber snared the prestigious model of the year award.

The 17-year-old started is the youngest model to win the accolade, beating last year’s winner Adwoa Aboah, Bella Hadid and Winnie Harlow.

Other winners include Gucci (brand of the year), Miuccia Prada (outstanding achievement) and Pierpaolo Piccioli for Valentino (designer of the year).

Like Meghan, the awards themselves took a back seat to the red carpet winners.

Model Adut Akech was a standout before the ceremony in dramatic gold that was both intergalactic and old Hollywood.

Adut Akech
Adut Akech. Photo: Getty

As always, Kate Moss was just the right edge of tacky, looking like she was off to the world’s most fun nightclub.

Kate Moss.
Kate Moss. Photo: Getty

Victoria Beckham, your jumpsuit is elegance personified. But sometimes we miss the matching denim and hair extensions.

Victoria Beckham
Victoria Beckham. Photo: Getty

Kendall Jenner managed to make peekaboo Julien McDonald all class.

Kendall Jenner
Kendall Jenner. Photo: Getty

Carey Mulligan in ladylike-yet-edgy Prada.

Carey Mulligan
Carey Mulligan. Photo: Getty

Paloma Faith brought it in fussy, froufrou fantastic Dilara Findikoglu.

Paloma Faith
Paloma Faith. Photo: Getty

Designer Roksanda Ilincic was her own best advertisement in a fuschia floor sweeper that made you long for Palm Springs and a party.

Roksanda Illincic
Roksanda Ilincic. Photo: Getty

Saoirse Ronan, welcome to Dancing with the Stars.

Saoirse Ronan
Saoirse Ronan. Photo: Getty

French fashion editor Carine Roitfeld: coolest person in the room.

Carine Roitfeld
Carine Roitfeld. Photo: Getty

Naomi Watts’ inspiration? The Queen Mum.

Naomi Watts.
Naomi Watts. Photo: Getty

Rita Ora did Prada proud, meshing a beret, earrings, necklace, short suit and long socks.

Rita Ora
Rita Ora. Photo: Getty

Uma Thurman went to the dark side.

Uma Thurman
Uma Thurman. Photo: Getty

Model Lily McMenamy was super-high fashwan. Unreal.

Lily McMenamy
Lily McMenamy. Photo: Getty

Model Jourdan Dunn in anything but basic black.

Jourdan Dunn
Jourdan Dunn. Photo: Getty

Rosie Huntington-Whiteley was part mermaid, part Melania.

Rosie Huntington-Whiteley
Rosie Huntington-Whiteley. Photo: Getty

Lana Del Rey’s Gucci looks had David Copperfield overtones, but better.

Lana Del Rey
Lana Del Rey. Photo: Getty

Alek Wek, in Emilia Wickstead, had the night’s biggest bow.

Alek Wek.
Alek Wek. Photo: Getty