The life of Diana. Princess of Wales is being celebrated this year in a special exhibition at Kensington Palace (Diana, Her Fashion Story) and among the most high profile gowns in the press coverage of the event has been one worn before she even became royal. I'll admit I hadn't really registered the pale blue evening gown making such a mark in this exhibition but it's an interesting piece that has become very famous for good reason. This is the start of Diana's style story - and shows all the hallmarks of the fashion icon who would dominate headlines for years.
In many ways, this gown was just a run of the mill pick for the then Lady Diana Spencer when she selected it for a ball at her family home, Althorp House, in 1979. It was made by Regamus, a popular option for aristocratic women at the time, and it has all the elements you'd expect for a ballgown of the time. There's a long flouncy skirt, a neat little waistband and acres of pastel fabric, light as you like and ready to flutter in a summer's breeze. And yet this is very Diana.