The world expected her to be dripping in "Markle Sparkle". Instead her choice left fashion commentators drooling and social media split.
The world expected the royal bride to be dripping in her trademark Markle sparkle.
But besides wearing Diana's dazzling aquamarine ring to the after party, what we got was a simple sophistication that had fashionistas drooling and social media split on whether the new Duchess of Sussex played it too safe.
READ MORE: • The best royal wedding dresses of the past
Tatler magazine, the London society bible which has been the go-to for Sloane Rangers since Diana was a preschool teacher, declared Meghan Markle's ice white Givenchy gown a red hot choice for the newest Royal.
Despite expectations she would go big on the bling, in an embellished Ralph & Russo gown for either her walk down the aisle or the evening reception at Frogmore House, the former Suits star impressed serious style watchers for her restraint and modern elegance.
In a departure from the Audrey Hepburn grace of the wedding gown, she doubled down on her classic style in the slinky Stella McCartney number she wore to the party.
Her ice blue dress ring — gifted to Prince Harry as part of his late mother's estate — was a showstopping addition to her evening look; previously worn by the former Princess of Wales when she visited Sydney for a Victor Chang Cardiac Institute fundraiser.
Jade Beer, the magazine's Brides editor said what most of British society were thinking, relieved by the regal choice.
"The cut is so clever, the silk cady fabric is so luxurious and the fit is so precise that this dress works on every level without all the showiness that many were expecting," she said, adding "it's not trying too hard."
The bride also earned the praise of British Vogue's fashion critic, Anders Christian Madsen who said: "it was contemporary royal elegance epitomised in an haute couture gown: ceremony sans opulence, romance without fuss."
Factory knock-offs of the wedding dress began almost as soon as the bride stepped from her State Bentley, with one Sydney design duo taking 10 hours to recreate a version from 30 metres of fabric and tuille bought at a local Spotlight store for $700.
"We sort of got an idea through the car [window] with the neckline, but once she got out, we started sketching," seasoned dressmaker Elizabeth Alexandrou said.
"I loved the veil with the lacework on the edge, it was really a lovely dress and really it suited her well," she added.
READ MORE: • Meghan Markle's veil a nod to New Zealand
But social media was a different story where comments sparked heated debate.
The Tudors actor Gary Janetti, the long-time partner of Fashion Police star and Hollywood stylist, Brad Goreski, used his Instagram parody posts, featuring Prince George, to sneer at Meghan's simple appearance.
In the meme style he has posted for months — setting up an imaginary feud between Prince Harry's new wife and the little prince — Janetti captioned a split pic of the two royals, with a caption purporting to quote George sledging: "I wonder when she's going to change into her dress."
- Additional reporting, NZ Herald