Why the duchess won’t dress down

Grazia (UK) - - 10 Hot_ Stories - RE­BECCA LOW THOR PE, G RA Z IA FASH­ION DI­REC­TOR

The world turned on its axis last week, when the Duchess of Sus­sex closed her own car door. She was at­tend­ing the open­ing of Ocea­nia at the Royal Acad­emy of Arts on her first solo pub­lic out­ing and wore a sleek black Givenchy dress that cost £2,510. The day be­fore, she at­tended the Coach Core Awards at Lough­bor­ough Univer­sity and wore a navy blue, asym­met­ric-hemmed Os­car de la Renta top (£1,636), black Al­tuzarra trousers (£555) and – shocker – high heels, while be­ing thrown net­balls in front of the global me­dia. (Nice catch by the way, Meghan.) Cue the hoo-hahs of dis­sent about her pol­ished and pricey wardrobe ver­sus what was ap­par­ently ex­pected – a dressed-down duchess. What? No flats, ripped jeans and boyfriend shirt, as she wore for her first pub­lic ap­pear­ance with Prince Harry at the In­vic­tus Games in Canada? Well, no, of course not. That was a year ago, when the duchess was Meghan, pre-firm, pre-royal, pre-chauf­feur. As for her lat­est work uni­forms of chic­ness, they con­vey the deep­est re­spect for her role. These clothes are her ar­mour, her se­cu­rity, her weapons. Do they say she is el­e­vated and above us? Yes, that too. She is a duchess, af­ter all. A newly anointed one at that. Af­ter seven years in pearls and cus­tom-made Mcqueen, her sis­ter-in-law the Duchess of Cam­bridge has earned the right to wear train­ers and roll around on the grass at the polo in high-street brands with the kids if she so likes – and don’t we all like her the bet­ter for it? But our lat­est duchess isn’t there yet; she’s only just be­gun to build her royal iden­tity. Along with her Te­flon-coated con­fi­dence. And who of us can deny the power of pro­fes­sional el­e­gance? Es­pe­cially in hers – the most in­tensely watched and pres­surised of all en­vi­ron­ments…

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