From Alexander McQueen gowns to Christopher Kane coats and black Mother skinny jeans, Kate Middleton and Meghan Markle know their way around a wardrobe.
But while the British duo steal most of the world’s attention when it comes to royal fashion, they don’t have the title of best-dressed royals all sewn up.
With Kate on maternity leave and Meghan prepping behind palace walls for her May 19 wedding, European queens and princesses have stepped up this month to showcase red carpet, street and business style.
Their sleek, chic style steals retro cool from the 1970s but in a contemporary, sophisticated way. Think wide legs, pantsuits, statement earrings and runway-ready dresses.
But before we go to Scandinavia and Spain for inspiration, one UK princess is worthy of a fashion-forward mention.
On April 1, while others in her family went for predictable pastel dress coats for an Easter church service at Windsor, newly-engaged Eugenie of York, 28, was fabulously unconventional in a $5000 Oscar de la Renta paint-splattered balloon dress with a fuschia Juliette Boterill hat.
The same day, Queen Letizia of Spain stepped out for church in Mallorca in a spotted shirt – she favours Hugo Boss, sometimes worn with leather pants – paired with high-waisted cropped wide pants and ladylike heels. Her pink bag was a perfect tiny pop of colour.
A week later, Letizia, 45, showcased her street style on an outing with her daughters, Princess Leonor, 12, and Infanta Sofia, 10. The girls were in matching Burberry trenches and ballet flats, their mother in a bateau top, jeans and boots.
A former journalist, Letizia, 45, is a master of tailored statement dressing. At an official lunch at the Zarzuela Palace with husband King Felipe, 50, on Monday, she was daytime regal in a grey-blue Felipe Varela belted woollen jacket with hand-embroidered box pleated skirt and electric blue Magrit reptile skin pumps.
Rounding off an excellent couple of weeks, the queen wore a sexy LBD with intricate detailing, unexpected earrings and a blow wave worthy of a shampoo ad for a reception at the El Pardo Palace on Tuesday.
In Monaco last week, Princess Charlene, 40, did her own version of black cocktail cool for a fundraising dinner. The mother-of-two smashed it in a structured Ralph Lauren one-shoulder jumpsuit worn with minimal (diamond) jewellery and world-class collarbones.
The night before, Queen Maxima of the Netherlands, 46, pulled off both elegant and modern in a Natan blush wide-legged jumpsuit that was part disco, part showgirl, all head-turning for the premiere of The Color Purple in Amsterdam.
For a day at the office – welcoming Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Stockholm on Tuesday – Sweden’s Crown Princess Victoria, 40, paired a $202 floral midi tea dress by high street label & Other Stories with emerald drop earrings.
In Denmark on the same day, Tasmanian-born Princess Mary, 46, cut a ribbon at a hospital in a pale pink confection of an outfit: top by Elise Gug, skirt by Day Birger et Mikkelsen, Gianvito Rossi stiletto pumps and a controversial feathered fascinator.
To deliver a speech at a university – also on Tuesday – Belgium’s Queen Mathilde, 45, made a standout modern statement in a bold orange pantsuit with heels and huge smile.
And the same day – clearly one all the fashion gods aligned, or the European royals had a pact to pull out all stops – Princess Sofia of Sweden, 33, swanned down a public street tailed by a bodyguard and showcasing a runway-worthy Ida Sjostedt dress and emerald heels.