Did a NZ-born designer accuse Meghan Markle's dressmaker of copying her design?

  • 31/05/2018
Meghan Markle on her wedding day compared to Emilia Wickstead's wedding gown.
Meghan Markle on her wedding day compared to Emilia Wickstead's wedding gown. Photo credit: Getty; Instagram / @emiliawicksteadbridal

A New Zealand-born designer claims she never said Meghan Markle's dressmaker copied one of her own, despite reports she slammed the new royal's wedding outfit choice.

Earlier this week the Daily Mail reported Emilia Wickstead criticised the Duchess of Sussex's wedding gown as "quite loose", allegedly adding it was "identical" to one of her own designs.

"Apparently a lot of commentators were saying, 'It's an Emilia Wickstead dress'," the Daily Mail reported Wickstead as saying.

"If you choose a simple design the fit should be perfect."

The gossip column did not reference where or when she made the comments.

Meghan's dress was actually created by Givenchy's Clare Wright Keller, estimated by Time Magazine to cost up to NZ$550,000.

After facing fierce backlash online and having her Twitter account disabled, the Kiwi-born designer went public to deny she ever made such remarks.

In a statement she said she did "not think that her wedding dress was a copy of any of our designs", adding that she has the "greatest respect for Clare Wright Keller".

"I am extremely saddened by commentary that has appeared in the press and on-line over the past few days.

"Her Royal Highness, the Duchess of Sussex looked absolutely beautiful on her wedding day and I have the utmost admiration and respect for her."

But while the origin of the comments published by the Daily Mail cannot be confirmed, Wickstead did make other comparisons between Markle's dress and one of her own on Instagram, which have since been deleted.

The day after the wedding, her label posted a photo of the newlyweds - but with its own account, @emiliawicksteadbridal, tagged in the photo, Stuff reports. It also had the hashtag, #meghanmarkleweddingdress. The references have since been removed.

The following day, the official account posted two photos of Wickstead's own design - the very design Daily Mail reported she believed Keller had copied. The photo included the hashtag #meghanmarkle. Those photos, minus the hashtags, are still on the Instagram page.

It's sparked a lot of debate as to whether Wickstead had a point with her alleged comparison.

"It's not the same," one Instagram user commented.

"Get over yourself Emilia. Narcissistic much? Thinking everything that occurs is related to themselves somehow."

One person said Wickstead's design looked like a "posh pillow cover" and called it a publicity stunt.

But one person said the dress was "obviously" copied, "especially since this designer has worked with the royals before".

"It's disgraceful how @givenchyofficial got away with that," another said in her defence.

Thousands have now weighed in on her posts.