The newest addition to the British royal family, Meghan Markle, attended her second official public outing recently and, of course, the fashion pundits (whoever they are) were swift with their criticism of her lovely pale pink off-the-shoulder jacket.
“Too risqué for a royal,” was the murmured opinion, from people who are probably kicking back in sweatpants picking last night’s cheese and onion crisps off their Marks and Spencer’s sweater.
This is a conundrum for the young women such as Kate Middleton and Meghan who are moving the monarchy forward – on one hand they are expected to introduce a fresh and contemporary fashion sense, on the other, there are protocols that must be maintained.
Let’s face it, the sight of a duchess wearing an open-toe shoe or a lack of hosiery could potentially unleash mass panic and uncertainty levels tantamount to Brexit.
And let’s not forget hats, for goodness sake. Meghan appeared to be struggling with hats, and her first attempts during the engagement period were less than successful. But she certainly has the hang of it now.
Even the critics who were clutching their pearls at the sight of Meghan’s exposed clavicle must admit that her hat was heaven, and her hair and makeup as always perfect. In my opinion, her outfit choice was perfect, modern, stylish and appropriate.
Meghan is a gorgeous young woman, who looked wonderful in clothes well before her wedding. She has easy, LA style, which means jeans and white shirts worn with ballet flats and sunglasses. I fear they may disappear, unless she adopts that sort of Diana-in-her-landmine-period look – the chinos and shirts the princess wore while she was doing her all-important charity work.
Meghan also looks great in shorts – some of her best red carpet looks were tailored jackets worn with shorts and high heels.
That, I can most definitely predict, is way too 21st century for the royals. Even Prince George and Princess Charlotte are sticking to a 1940’s dress code, bless them.
The problem with traditional ‘good taste’ is that it is most often in the eye of the beholder.
And what are their points of reference? We all used to agree on some things: don’t wear trackies to a wedding, maybe a midriff top is not appropriate in church, don’t wear your nightclubbing outfit to the races.
But hell, all those rules have gone out the window. People get married in swimwear, wear cut-off shorts to a funeral and consider bike shorts evening wear.
So it seems a little unfair that the younger British royals, who are doing a relatively good job of making us not automatically resent them for their privilege, should carry the burden of sartorial good taste.
As much as I am sure that Meghan can carry off beige pumps, and useless headpieces, and tame clutch bags and ugly sheer stockings, it would be nice to see her push the envelope a little. Pantsuits and high heels. Jeans and jackets.
Actually, it would be great if she worked that look with a tiara.