Pippa Middleton Weds In Giles Deacon
AN ECCENTRIC designer; a traditional dress. Pippa Middleton chose British couturier Giles Deacon to design her bridal gown for her wedding to James Matthews on Saturday, and the result was wonderfully Pinterest friendly: file this under “traditional English bride”. The only surprise? That it was Deacon, known for his flamboyant, antic-flavoured designs, who conceived of the beautifully old-school, classically chic number.
Deacon’s name had admittedly been in the mix for some time after he was photographed exiting Middleton’s Kensington home several months ago, garment bags in hand. Some unfairly presumed he was designing her bridesmaids’ dresses, given that his headline-grabbing, experimental designs often tinker with borderline bad taste. Instead, Deacon pulled off an elegant dress that felt stately but not staid, classy but not stiflingly conventional.
On paper the design sounds a little prim and proper, even for the sister of the future Queen of England. Constructed entirely of lace, the material had been hand-assembled to create a seamless sheath, and embroidered with tiny pearls. But Deacon’s skill is in trifling with tradition. Hence, the high neck added a touch of unexpected drama; the capped sleeves a contemporary edge. The form-fitting waist spilled out into a tulle-filled train, which Deacon said was inspired by the ballroom dancing scene in Luchino Visconti’s 1963 film The Leopard, where Claudia Cardinale’s white puff of a dress floats out behind her as she moves.
The similarities with her sister the Duchess of Cambridge’s dress were marked. Like Kate, Pippa chose lace, though she was able to take a more modern approach to the cut. She paired her gown with a Stephen Jones pearl-studded veil, a Maidenhair Fern tiara and Manolo Blahnik shoes. For her part, careful not to upstage her sister, the Duchess wore a pale peach Alexander McQueen Forties-style dress and a rose-embellished Jane Taylor hat.
Deacon shuttered his ready-to-wear business in January 2016 to focus on couture and the bespoke side of his business. He has since established a 20-strong London atelier just off Brick Lane, in London’s East End, producing exquisite custom-made pieces for between £3,000 and £5,000, and red-carpet creations for between £50,000 and £70,000. At the moment he has a client book of roughly 50 clients. After this coup, that number will surely swell.