It's hard to get tired of Kate Middleton when she's been wearing her clothes indoors, away from cameras, for almost a full twelve days. The last time she was photographed was leaving from LAX airport, concluding her and Prince William's official visit to North America. Today, she'll hopefully be photographed again on a jaunt with the queen to view her Alexander McQueen wedding dress, which is finally on display in the state rooms of Buckingham Palace through October 3 and still has not gotten literally or figuratively old. More than 125,000 tickets were sold before the exhibit even opened, reports USA Today, while the palace is expecting record crowds to view her dress, which is on a pedestal with her veil, wedding-day jewelry, and shoes.
A couple of outlets report Kate's shoes — which we could barely see at the wedding but can now at the palace in their full lace splendor, which is like seeing them for the first time — are around a 7.5 to 8 in U.S. sizes, which is small for a woman of Kate's five-foot-ten height. (Meanwhile, the curator would only say the size of the dress was "small.") The Daily Mail reports the cost of the dress to be £250,000, or $407,550, though we're wary of their facts that don't come from paparazzi photos. The designer of the dress, Sarah Burton, who worked with Kate and the palace on the exhibition, explained to the Telegraph how involved making the dress was:
"The Duchess was very conscious that when she walked down the aisle she didn't want the dress to collapse so it was a real feat of engineering. We weighted the whole of the bottom part of the dress with canvas, and in particular the middle (of the train) so when we lifted the dress it would fall back in exactly the same position."
Visitors to the exhibit can also see a few layers of the royal wedding cake, including the mark where Kate and William first cut it with a sword, as is the tradition. (As is the tradition!) Apparently the top layer on display is only a replica of the real cake, because the real thing has to be saved for their first child's christening. If you're worried about the cake turning before you get to the exhibit, never fear — the palace, which has to handle all kinds of very old things, is adept at mold prevention.
The confection "could last an extremely long time," says [curator Caroline] de Guitaut, dispelling worries about mold. "In the Royal Collection, we have a number of pieces of wedding cake dating back to the 19th century," all in decent if not edible condition.
But considering its contents, was it ever in edible condition?
Kate's wedding dress going on exhibit [USAT]
Roll up, roll up for the Kate clothes show (Pippa not included). Half a million expected to file past wedding dress at Buckingham Palace [Daily Mail UK]
Kate Middleton's wedding dress secrets revealed by designer Sarah Burton [Telegraph UK]
Related: The Kate Middleton Look Book