Kate Middleton is once again on the cover of Grazia this week. However, the well-groomed Duchess is no longer being praised for her style, on the contrary, the headline solemnly reads “The Fashion Backlash”. Could it already be the end for Kate’s reign as the most fashionable royal?
The Duchess’ recent fashion choices don’t seem to have gone down too well with the public. Kate’s frequent recycling of outfits has caused a stir in the media and even amongst celebrities. Several newspapers have been commenting on the fact that Kate wore a previously worn dress to Zara Phillips’ pre-wedding party and a coat she hadn’t sported for five years to the wedding itself. She has also been seen out recently in dresses that she has previously worn at events and out on the town. Kelly Osbourne slammed the Duchess on Jay Leno’s show for her casual re-wearing of outfits saying: “I’m sorry, but if I had the job I would only wear it once.”
The fashion world doesn’t seem to be too impressed by Kate’s choices either. In a recent interview influential British fashion designer Vivienne Westwood criticised the Duchess’ look by claiming that it is “ordinary”. She also found significant fault with her makeup, telling the Sunday Times Magazine: “I think she’s got a problem with eye make-up. The sharp line around her eyes make her look hard. Either she should be smudgy or wear none.” Similarly, in an interview last month with Grazia Daily, Dutch fashion duo Viktor & Rolf commented on Kate’s use of eyeliner saying that if she used less it would “bring out her natural beauty”. It seems, therefore, that the world is suddenly turning on Kate after initially praising her.
Since the royal wedding Kate has been one of most watched women in the UK, being in the public eye and especially being in the royal family, it’s inevitable that one is eventually going to receive a certain amount of criticism. However, I think that since Kate has never claimed to be a fashionista or an icon, the press should go a little easier on her. If anything I think the fact that she has no shame in wearing her outfits more than once proves that she has no desire to establish herself as a fashion icon, or use her status to gain fashion credentials from the industry. In doing this she’s shown the world that she has more alike with the every day woman than we thought. Some of the dresses she has worn are beautiful and it’s only natural that she would want to wear them more than once!
I think everyone is forgetting that behind the “royal” persona that Kate has adopted, she is still a normal woman like the rest of us. The nation was quickly swept up in Royal Wedding Fever at the beginning of the year and in doing so made the mistake of assuming that Kate was the one to watch in terms of style. Now she can’t make one mistake without everyone condemning her for it. I personally do not rate Kate’s style and agree that some of her outfits can be hit and miss, but there’s definitely no need for this Kate backlash that seems to be occurring. Let’s hope that Kate doesn’t take it to heart and continues to make fashion choices for her and not just to please the public.