What Meghan Markle was like on her wedding day, from those who were there
Four years ago, millions of people around the world watched as Prince Harry married American actor Meghan Markle at a star-studded wedding in Windsor.
Much has changed since then, with the couple making the dramatic announcement that they wanted to step back as senior members of the Royal Family just one year and 10 months into their marriage.
Although they now live 6,000 miles away in Montecito, just outside Los Angeles, with their son Archie, three, and their daughter Lilibet, 11 months, all eyes were on Meghan and Harry on their wedding day, 19 May 2018.
While Meghan had been a celebrity in her own right before she met her prince, stepping into the world of the British Royal Family can be an entirely different ball game.
You might expect that the night before such an important day, in anyone's book, let alone a royal, that the bride-to-be would be a bag of nerves, but apparently that wasn't always the case.
One of those who spent the evening before the wedding with Meghan was Sarah Chapman, her facialist.
She opened up about what the duchess-to-be was like on a night she was sure to be filled with nerves and excitement.
Chapman told People magazine: “With Meghan, I was lucky to be able to see her the evening before the wedding to really get her skin moisturised, nourished and bright for it to look so naturally gorgeous on the day.
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“We talked, we laughed, we would chat about stuff and I always left feeling like I could change the world — that’s the person she is.”
Meghan’s relationship with her facialist was relatively new, but she went way back with her cake maker. Meghan had interviewed Claire Ptak over email for her blog The Tig when she was running it, way before she met Harry.
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Speaking about the preparations for the big day, Ptak told Town and Country: “They absolutely signed off on everything, and it was really cool because this made it a very easy process. I would suggest something and they’d say, 'We love it.'
“I think [Meghan] knew that I would do the kind of thing she was interested in, and that made it easier.”
Meghan also charmed her dress maker, Clare Waight Keller, the artistic director at Givenchy. The designer shared how much she had loved their time together on Instagram at the end of April.
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She said: “She was modern, with a fresh approach, warm and welcoming, completely disarming and joyful in every way. We struck it off instantly and a friendship began.
“Fittings were always a special time to chat, just us, it was a time of getting to know each other’s history and there are many memorable moments.
“But above it all is a connection between two people that come from completely different paths in life.
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“Friendship is about love, understanding and kindness. A good friend knows your stories and also helps you write them.”
Reflecting on the bride the night before, Keller told The Telegraph: “Meghan was not nervous at all. She was radiant, serene and utterly stunning.”
And their friendship was genuine, with Meghan returning to the designer several times over the first year and a half of her royal life. Keller designed her outfit for her first engagement with the Queen, and her Royal Ascot debut.
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Keller’s view of Meghan on the day was echoed by her hairstylist, Serge Normant, who told Glamour she was “very chill”.
He said: “It was such an easy morning. We were just having a great time. Everything was very chill. I know it’s hard for people to believe that, but it was just really easy all around.”
Meghan’s good friend Daniel Martin did her make-up and she has worked with him on many other occasions.
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The pair had been friends for some time, and so it was a relaxed process between people who knew each other.
He told E! news: “She’s the most chill person and that morning was just like, easy. I didn’t have a make-up trial with her because we just couldn’t make the time. I knew what she liked and what she didn’t like. We exchanged, like, Pinterest pictures over text.”
The man behind the photographs of the happy couple on the day was New York-based Alexi Lubomirski.
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He told the Evening Standard they wanted their pictures to be “authentic”.
He also took their engagement photographs, and told Vogue “they were giggling with each other – they get in their own little world”.
Lubomirski is actually a descendent of royalty himself, and holds the title His Serene Highness Prince Alexi.
A post shared by The Duke and Duchess of Sussex (@sussexroyal) on Nov 27, 2019 at 7:26am PST
Speaking about their wedding day pictures, he described the couple as “zen” and added: “I think they trusted me from the first couple of shots and I think you feel that sense of relaxation in the pictures.”
Prince Harry and Meghan may still be the Duke and Duchess of Sussex two years on, but their lives are very different. They do not use their HRH stylings, and are adjusting to their new life in California, Meghan’s home state.
The couple intend to return to the UK for the Queen's Platinum Jubilee celebrations in June.
Watch: On This Day 2018: Prince Harry And Meghan Markle's Star-Studded Wedding