Ever since Meghan Markle made her first public appearance with Prince Harry and fully stepped into the spotlight as a royal-to-be last year, all eyes have been on her every move and, of course, her every outfit. Now that she’s a duchess, her wardrobe gets even more attention—and it is proven that her sartorial choices can have a financial impact, as some of the fashion brands she’s worn have reported a boost in sales (or sold out of a specific product) because of the royal “endorsement.” And it appears the Meghan Markle Effect applies to wedding-guest dresses and wedding jewelry alike.
People reports that there’s been a rise in interest in Welsh gold after it was was reported that Markle’s wedding band was crafted out of the rare metal. Clogau, a family-owned jeweler in North Wales that specializes in local materials, told the magazine that it got “a lot of exposure when there is a royal wedding…. It was the same when William and Kate got married. It definitely gives business a boost. Whenever the public becomes aware of the royal connection, then there is increased interest in rare Welsh gold.”
The Duchess of Sussex’s wedding band wasn’t made by Clogau but by Cleave and Company, the London court jewelers and medallists to Queen Elizabeth II (which was also responsible for Markle’s engagement ring.) The Welsh gold that Cleave and Company used in Markle’s ring was gifted to her by the queen, per People, and aligns with a nearly century-old tradition of using the metal in royal wedding bands: In 1923 the queen mother, Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon, had her wedding ring made using gold from the Clogau St. David’s mine that had been donated to the royal family; since then Princess Diana, Duchess Camilla, and Kate Middleton have all reportedly included the rare metal in their own bands.
Still, while people may now be more interested in Welsh gold, there’s still a finite amount in the world, and thus chances are slim that all those people will actually be able to get their hands on a ring like Meghan’s—Markle Effect or not.