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Kate Middleton wedding dress replicas to hit the shelves

Alexander McQueen creative director Sarah Burton has said designing Kate [Catherine] Middleton’s wedding dress was “the experience of a lifetime” as replica dresses began to hit the high street shelves within days of its reveal.

According to The Daily Mirror, supermarket label George at Asda and value fashion group Peacocks are both due to bring out their own versions of the dress and etailer ­ is already selling a dress in a similar style for £349. Further imitations of Middeton’s white and satin gown have also been produced by dress makers including Annette Carey and American tailor Allen B Schwartz.

The dress was designed by Burton, who has been at the creative helm of the Alexander McQueen label since McQueen’s death last February. Middleton’s sister Pippa wore a slim-line cowl neck dress also designed by Burton and the subject of approval by the fashion industry.

The two dresses could now be subject to a flurry of spin-off high street versions, as seen when Middleton wore a blue Issa dress to announce her engagment to Prince William with Tesco and Peacocks then selling dresses in a similar style.

Middleton’s choice of designer could also mean a rise in sales for the Alexander McQueen label thanks to the huge profile boost afforded by the wedding of both the brand and its chief designer.

Averyl Oates, chief buying director at Harvey Nichols, said the wedding would have a “spectacularly immediate impact” on sales of the brand. She added: “Alexander McQueen has long proved itself a popular brand with our customers, but hopefully this will now extend its visibility across the world, and what better platform than to be adorning the future Queen of England.”

Marigay McKee, fashion and beauty director at Harrods, said: “There is always a demand for exquisite couture and I’m sure the house has a great future. There is a new McQueen flagship going in store for spring 2012, which we are all tremendously excited about.”

In a statement released by Alexander McQueen Burton said: “It has been the experience of a lifetime to work with Catherine Middleton to create her wedding dress, and I have enjoyed every moment of it.  It was such an incredible honour to be asked, and I am so proud of what we and the Alexander McQueen team have created. I am delighted that the dress represents the best of British craftsmanship.”

She added: “Alexander McQueen’s designs are all about bringing contrasts together to create startling and beautiful clothes and I hope that by marrying traditional fabrics and lacework, with a modern structure and design we have created a beautiful dress for Catherine on her wedding day.

“The last few months have been very exciting and an incredible experience for my team and I as we have worked closely with Catherine to create this dress under conditions of the strictest secrecy. Understandably, Catherine has been very keen to keep the details of her dress a secret, which is every bride’s prerogative, and we gave an undertaking to keep our role confidential until the day of the wedding.”

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