It is difficult to avoid examining Royal choices of apparel even in their most personal moments since they do appear to ‘want’ it and moreover,to dictate it.The first public presentation of the (next) Prince of England was no short of semiotic references.In fact all the couple’s apparel bore the ‘label’, young,up-to-date yet still Royals.As people would wish to see them,in fact.The Jenny Packham maternity dress with white dots that Kate wore bore a double meaning.That she’s one of her people( thus the blue simply cut dress that gave the impression of a much elegant hospital apparel-enhancing the sense that the event is happening here and now,’not hiding’ anything from the crowd that assembled to cheer.Prince William wore matching blue shirt showcasing the (emotional) connection with Kate,still he chose to wear cuffs(reminding he’s royalty above all).Naturally Kate was compelled to choose a more modern version of late Diana’s dress worn at exactly the same occasion (birth of Prince Harry).Mrs Middleton does not imitate Diana’s dress choices,she is making a great effort though to be associated with her as a younger,more modern version of a crown princess.She has managed to establish a style of her own, with dress choices being imitated by several women in the UK.
Still,the Royal PR insists on past references.Thus the Diana-like Packham dotted dress.
In the event of the Royal Prince’s Christening,the pattern seems to follow the same idea: ”revolutionary royals”.First,the choice of the Chapel Royal instead of the Music Room of Buckingham Palace,making the event look ”less formal”.Still its not a place empty of connotations,since its where the coffin of late Diana was kept and respects were being paid.Therefore,this choice is nothing less than a symbol of the royalty ‘reconciliation’ with the late Diana along with another of Kate’s strategically design effort to fill her place,christening the grandson exactly where the ‘line of uber popular royalty’ was cut.
And now,to apparel.When Prince William was christened in 1982 he was dressed in the traditional lace and satin robe made for Queen Victoria’s eldest daughter.Since this outfit is too fragile to be used (designed by Janet Sutherland,the ‘Embroiderer to the Queen’),an exact copy will be produced by the Queen’s couturier Angela Kelly.
And this is where the choice of photographer to immortalize the image of three future monarch’s come into the PR game.After interviewing many photographers,it was Jason Bell who took the ticket to immortality himself.A rather radical choice of a photographer,whose work includes portraits of David Beckham, Robbie Williams and collaborations with Vanity Fair and Vogue.And that’s how the royal family wishes to appear-in vogue!
As for Christening himself,Kate wore a low key outfit and headgear in similar color with the Prince’s gown,thus boldly signifying that she is indeed the mother of a Prince.(lets not forget that there were voices in England that indicated she;s unfit for a future Queen as she’s actually no Royalty).With moves as such she’s re-establishing her role as a ‘future Queen’ plus being a worthy person for Diana’s ‘place’ in actual Palace but first and foremost,in people’s minds.Diana wore a flower patterned purple dress in Prince William’s christening and a matching hat with Prince Charles in a suit,formal as always.Seems that this time,William and Kate didn’t opt for an imitation of the other couple’s outfits,thinking perhaps that too many similarities would work the other way round.Still,Mrs Middleton did not left the purple Diana dress out of her sartorial choices,in fact she poses with a similarly colored dress (no floral prints this time) along Prince Charles in a family ”photo” carefully leaked to the media.No doubt,she’s done her homework.