Meet the Aussie woman who dressed Meghan Markle
FROM humble beginnings working in her parents' businesses in Rockhampton to dressing possibly the most recognisable woman in the world, Karen Gee has certainly left her mark on history.
Growing up, Ms Gee to her dismay was made to work in her parents' businesses round Rockhampton, and looking back she could have never predicted that her life and her work would take her to where she is now.
The Duchess of Sussex, stepping out yesterday morning in a dress designed by Ms Gee, created a frenzy around her and her brand.
The Blessed Dress, which retails for $1800, sparked so much interest that the Karen Gee website crashed yesterday morning.
Surprised and overjoyed by the reaction she received, the now Sydney-based Ms Gee said it will be a day she will remember for a long time to come.
"I am actually so blown away and it probably hasn't sunk in yet," she said.
"There are so many incredible fashion designers in Australia, and the world, and for me to be day one choice for the first official outing and the first official day after the announcement of the baby, this is something I will absolutely treasure for the rest of my life.
"Meghan is not only so beautiful, but her purpose and her beliefs and her support to women is very much aligned to the Karen Gee brand."
Acknowledging how momentous the day has been for her, Ms Gee said while she will definitely never forget it, she gets the same sense of accomplishment from dressing anyone else.
"I feel great about it, but what is just as great is that I get so much enjoyment from dressing women who walk through my store.
"I get so much excitement from helping women feel good about themselves, it is my purpose in life and it is absolutely fantastic that Meghan has worn my dress, but it is not defining what the brand is or who I am."
Having created her brand five years ago, Ms Gee said she has always been devoted to designing and making clothes that inspire and empower women, and to have her brand align with a powerful and respected woman like the Duchess was a truly wonderful moment.
"If there is anyone in the world that you would love to have wearing your piece because she stands for something other than being beautiful, it is Meghan Markle," she said.
Ms Gee said she has worked hard to emphasise the importance of empowering women, and her purpose has always been to dress women of all shapes, sizes and backgrounds.
"So now it is nice to get that credibility and have Meghan choose me as one of the Australian fashion designers that do a dress for her," she said.