When Meghan Markle arrived at St George‘s chapel to marry Prince Harry, the world let out a collective gasp at her predictably amazing choice of gown.
While many were focussed on declaring the dress a style triumph, other experts speculated that the choice of designer – Clare Waight Keller for Givenchy – could actually be a subtle feminist statement by the newlywed thanks to the fact that Keller last year became the first female Artistic Director at the historic French fashion house.
As a passionate women’s rights activist, ambassador for UN Women and proud feminist, if Meghan’s design choice was in fact a deliberate nod to feminism, it certainly won’t have come as a surprise to her fans.
“I am proud to be a woman and a feminist,” she told the congregation at the UN Women Conference in New York back in 2015.
In fact her feminist values were in place right from childhood when she challenged a sexist ad campaign at just 11-years-old.
So it isn’t entirely surprising that the former actress would want to incorporate some of her beliefs into the wedding’s festivities.
And the dress isn’t the only feministic nod. Here’s every way Meghan and Harry incorporated the bride’s feminist beliefs into their wedding day.
Meghan and Harry are not averse to breaking a few royal rules, particularly when it comes to their wedding. And the ceremony itself was no different.
During her vows Meghan decided to omit the traditional promise to “obey” her husband-to-be.
Instead, she pledged: “For better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death us do part”.
The walk down the aisle
Perhaps her most striking feminist statement came when Meghan opted to walk herself part way down the aisle.
In an unprecedented step for a royal bride, Meghan instead walked unescorted down the aisle of the chapel nave, after being met at the West Door by a member of the clergy.
Accompanied only by her bridesmaids and page boys, the bride then met her now father-in-law Prince Charles at the Quire. Prince Harry’s father then walked Markle down the rest of the aisle to the foot of the altar where her future husband was waiting.
No other royal bride in the UK has walked unescorted down the aisle at their wedding ceremony.
Meghan’s decision indicates a desire to assert herself as a strong, independent woman who won’t shy away from challenging royal norms.
It isn’t just during the ceremony, that Meghan is going to exhibit her feminist credentials. The new bride is once again due break with tradition and deliver her own speech.
In a press release issued by Kensington Palace it was confirmed that the bride will join her new husband in addressing the guests herself.
“The Reception will include the cutting of the wedding cake and speeches from The Prince of Wales, Prince Harry and Ms. Markle,” the press release read.
“The Duke of Cambridge, who is the Best Man, will act as compere for the Reception.”
The decision for Meghan to give a speech at this evening’s reception actually reflects a growing trend for brides.
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