Every bride needs something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue. Meghan Markle checked off the first three easily, but saved the last for something very special.
Heading to her evening reception in a custom silk crepe Stella McCartney gown on the arm of her new husband, Meghan also wore a large cocktail ring borrowed from the mother-in-law she never got to meet.
The stunning aquamarine piece fit the brief – borrowed and blue – but was also a moving visual tribute to Prince Harry’s late mother, whose absence was felt throughout the ceremony and much discussed in the lead-up to the nuptials.
— Who What Wear (@WhoWhatWear) May 19, 2018
The ring was a favourite for Diana, who wore it on several occasions, including to a medical research dinner in Sydney, Australia, in 1996, the year before her tragic death.
Many royal watchers believe the ring may not just be borrowed, but actually gifted to Meghan by Harry.
That would mark the second time Harry has given his mother’s jewellery to his bride – he proposed in November 2017 with a ring featuring two stones from a brooch belonging to Diana.
Speaking to the BBC shortly after their engagement, Harry said his mother would have been “thick as thieves” with his then-wife-to-be, “without question”.
“I think she would be over the moon, jumping up and down, so excited for me. But I think she would have been best friends with Meghan,” he said.
Meghan’s choice of reception dress was also applauded for its strong links to her activist sensibilities – Stella McCartney is well known for her use of environmentally sustainable practices when designing and producing her clothing.
In keeping with the sustainable theme, Meghan and Harry sped off to their reception in a Jaguar E-Type Concept Zero, which Kensington Palace tweeted was, “originally manufactured in 1968, and has since been converted to electric power”.
Meghan’s custom white Aquazzura pumps also bore a nod to bridal tradition, featuring a painted pale blue sole.
Meghan made sure her close friends felt as special as she did on her big day, gifting friends Benita Litt and Jessica Mulroney, and her new sister in law, Kate Middleton, a 14-karat solid gold bracelet to commemorate the occasion.
Around 200 guests are expected to attend the evening reception at Frogmore House, following a lunch reception hosted by Queen Elizabeth and featuring a performance by Elton John.
“Sir Elton John has performed at the Lunchtime Reception for guests celebrating the Wedding of Prince Harry and Ms. Meghan Markle,” Kensington Palace said in a statement.
“Prince Harry asked Sir Elton to perform at the Reception which was hosted by Her Majesty The Queen at St George’s Hall, Windsor Castle. Sir Elton performed for the newly married couple in recognition of the close connection he has with Prince Harry and his family.”
Prince Charles, who is hosting the evening reception with Camilla Parker Bowles, gave a “fantastic” speech full of laughs at the lunchtime event, according to actress Jacinda Barrett, who is married to Meghan’s Suits co-star, Gabriel Macht.
“What a beautiful and joyous day today was with your lovely family and friends,” Barrett posted on Instagram.
“I danced when @eltonjohn sang, laughed at Prince Charles fantastic speech and am honoured to witness your commitment and love for each other.”
Congratulations Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. What a beautiful and joyous day today was with your lovely family and friends. I danced when @eltonjohn sang, laughed at Prince Charles fantastic speech and am honoured to witness your commitment and love for each other. Wishing you a long and happy life together #royalwedding #princeharry #meghanmarkle #windsor
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