Monday, 23 January 2017

The Royal Wardrobe: when weeks go wrong

Letizia leads the way again in a very odd week for the Royal Wardrobe
(photo casareal Twitter)

There's no point messing around here, last week wasn't the best for royal fashion. It was fine if you like tartan, odd sleeves and trousers that stop six inches too soon but if it's chic and stylish you're after, keep everything crossed for the week to come. It could just be subjective, please disagree as much as you want. Besides, even though there's not much to write home about, there is still a poll to pick a favourite (I think I know who has this in the bag already). Settle back and be amazed at a very odd week in the Royal Wardrobe.

Let's start with Queen Letizia of Spain who is usually on the money when it comes to being on trend. This week, for a visit to the FITUR International Tourism Fair in Madrid, we got the lot - culottes, ankle boots and a whole dusky pink/ burgundy mix thing and the result was overwhelming. If this is on trend, let's stay off it. There's so much going on, it's impossible to know where to look and at no point does this outfit ever really gel. In its favour, the culottes are not THOSE leather ones with THAT zip and she got Felipe to colour co-ordinate his tie. Which, on second thoughts, just added to the overkill. Oh, Leti.

Burgundy accessories, too, for Kate in the week who wore her now favourite block heel pumps with a new dress and added a claret coloured clutch for good measure. The dress itself is really very elegant - black with a bright flower print is always a winner and the simple shape is super chic. Picking out the plum as the colour to co-ordinate is rather elegant. Why she wasn't wearing a coat is anyone's guess, it was baltic in London as she attended the Heads Together briefing, but then she clearly have strong genes as George has been braving winter in shorts since 2013 without showing so much as a grimace. 

Clearly, not a characteristic shared by Crown Princess Mary who felt in so much need of a coat this week that she put on one with three quarter length sleeves and turned what should have been a sartorial success story into a bit of a miss. The black trousers and blue print top that began with so much promise invited along a pair of burgundy shoes (there's a theme here) and began having a fashion party which was gatecrashed by a three quarter length sleeve coat that made the whole thing look, well, rather odd. Mary smiled through it during her visit to the Rigshospitalet in Copenhagen but even she must have realised that this clash of the sleeves was never going to be epic.

Queen Maxima seemed to be running from her latest New Year reception in the week but she may just have realised that she appears to have put on a tartan flared skirt with a slit at the side and a ruffle at the top. Yep, who knew they even existed? Quite where this mad mix of styles and shapes has come from is anyone's guess but let's hope it goes back there very soon. Add in a rather low key red top and a very nice camel coat and Maxima gets the nice idea on paper, let's not do it again in practice outfit for 2017 out of the way early on.

Her friend and neighbour, Queen Mathilde, fared slightly better with a very similar combination but only from the waist up. Mathilde also mixed burgundy with tartan but the thicker top with its fuller sleeves and the sleeker top of her trousers make it a more subtle approach to this mix. Sadly, the trousers panned out into a half flare, half fitted look which only accentuated why tartan and burgundy need to go back in the box until next Christmas when we've all had sherry and won't care.

The Countess of Wessex celebrated her 52nd birthday with a trip to the Devon County Agricultural Association where the dress code was clearly tea dress and furs. The black and white print dress is rather ordinary while the addition of the furry jacket makes sense in the weather (take note, Kate) but not in the context of the outfit. The knee high boots are very Sophie and as it was her birthday there was cake and balloons which always makes everything alright. 

So there you have it. An odd week indeed and one to savour because of it, Choose your favourite in the poll at the top of the page - results on Wednesday. It will be interesting reading...

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