Does Duchess Meghan ‘need’ the couture clothes to accentuate her new power?

Trooping the Colour 2018

People complaining about the cost of the Duchess of Sussex’s wardrobe remind me of the people who complained about “the cost” of Michelle Obama’s security when she was First Lady. Which is to say, there’s a racial undertone (and sometimes just a flat-out TONE) to the conversation, like “who does this black woman think she is, wearing expensive clothes and expecting protection?” It bugs. It’s bugs me especially because the Duchess of Cambridge has blown through hundreds of thousands of dollars on clothes which she’s only worn once, but now it seems that the rules are SO different for Meghan. Anyway, Katie Nicholl has a piece in Vanity Fair all about the cost of dressing the new duchess and how she’s a lot more conservative than people were expecting. There’s some new information here.

She can’t take freebies: Though as an actress she was accustomed to being loaned dresses by fashion houses, as a royal she’s no longer entitled to take freebies—and the cost for her working wardrobe as a royal and royal-to-be is estimated to be as much as $1 million.

The cost of Meghan’s wardrobe: The Duchess of Sussex’s go-to designer, Givenchy’s Clare Waight Keller, charges in the region of $10,000 for a bespoke frock like the cream dress Meghan wore to Royal Ascot last week. While Meghan is given a discreet discount by some of her favorite designers, including Ralph & Russo, who made the $75,000 couture dress she wore for her official engagement pictures, her designer frocks can still be eye-poppingly expensive. There was the chic $18,000 Givenchy dress Meghan wore for her first away day to Cheshire with the Queen earlier this month, and the off-the-shoulder $4,000 Carolina Herrera skirt and top Meghan chose for Trooping the Colour.

The royals paid for Meghan’s wedding-day dresses: The royal family are understood to have covered the cost of Meghan’s two wedding dresses: the $265,000 boatneck Givenchy dress designed by Clare Waight Keller and the bespoke white halter-neck Stella McCartney evening frock, which are the two most expensive pieces in her wardrobe to date.

Meghan is looking for a full-time PA/dresser: While royal aides have confirmed the Duchess doesn’t have her own official stylist, she often turns to her close friend, Canadian fashion expert and consultant Jessica Mulroney, for fashion tips….With a busy royal diary that includes a trip to Ireland in mid-July and an overseas tour to Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, and Tonga coming up in the fall, Meghan is said to be looking for a personal assistant/dresser.

TV-fashion expert Mark Heyes says Meghan’s style is on-point: “I think it’s quite important for the Duchess of Sussex to be wearing couture especially at this point in her life. This is all brand new and the eyes of the world are on her. Couture will have been specifically made for her so she’s going to look a million dollars. She’s showcasing brands like Clare Waight Keller, a British designer which is very clever. It’s easy to dismiss fashion as an extravagance, but Meghan’s new job is to showcase the royal family to the world. She’s now a very powerful woman in fashion.”

[From Vanity Fair]

Personally, I’m not upset at the cost of Meghan’s wardrobe… yet. If she’s still dropping $5000 per ensemble for every new event for the next two years, then we’ll talk. She’s only been a duchess for a short time, and I feel like she’s still trying to find some kind of balance. She’s still figuring out what her new “duchess style” is going to be. People tend to gloss over the fact that in her first years of marriage especially, Kate would either dress like a college student or like a 50-something matron in most of her public appearances. It took her awhile to find some kind of balance (and even then, well… ). Do I think it’s mega-important for Meghan to be seen in couture and $4000 Prada dresses? No. Not really. But I think that as she finds her footing, we’ll see her start to mix and match, go high and low, and hopefully she’ll invest in some good separates which she can repeat endlessly too. And FFS, stop with the buttons.

The Prince of Wales' 70th Birthday Patronage Celebration

The newly married Duke and Duchess of Sussex, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry, leaving Windsor Castle after their wedding to attend an evening reception at Frogmore House, hosted by the Prince of Wales

Royal Ascot 2018 - Day 1

Photos courtesy of WENN, Backgrid, PCN.

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340 Responses to “Does Duchess Meghan ‘need’ the couture clothes to accentuate her new power?”

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  1. KLO says:

    I am ready for her to wear a color.

  2. Babs says:

    I’m so disappointed at what marriage did to Meghan. Royal fashion hurts my soul. If I was an English taxpayer I would be appalled at what they doing with my money. Only the Queen is good at it. I’m interested in the Queen’s fashion history. Was she always doing the color thing, for instance?

    • AG-UK says:

      WE are… and more appalled at the £360m renovations for those people.

      • Clare says:

        Yup – equally disgusted by both Meghan and Kate’s let them eat cake approach to spending on their wardrobes. The NHS is literally falling to shit and teachers are buying colouring pens from their own pocket, but the Duchesses need couture? Come on. It’s beyond a joke.

        For what it’s worth, I don’t even think Meghan needs expensive clothing to look ‘powerful’ or whatever. She is a stunning woman who I suspect would look so much better in clothing she is comfortable in (like that pantsuit she wore – swoon) rather than the ridiculously expensive and I’ll fitting nonsense she’s been wearing.

      • minx says:

        Clare, yes. The Pantsuit was her only real wow outfit IMO. The rest have been varying degrees of good, meh and bad. And if she’s building a wardrobe, and I assume she is, some of these dresses are too of-the-moment to become staple dresses.
        As far as her clothing spending, wouldn’t common sense tell her to take it easy? I would say this about anyone in the BRF.

      • Bella DuPont says:

        @ Clare

        This. EXACTLY this. For her own self preservation, she needs to avoid placing a target on her back for reckless and needless spending when there are aggressive cuts being made up and down the country.

        And Meghan has the extra burden of not being British……add that to the equation….

        She’s beautiful, there are far more affordable designers and higher end high street brands AT LEAST, for the first year or so of her marriage. Get people to start to feel comfortable with you and trust you. And then build your way up the price scale.

        Self Portrait, Joseph, LK Bennet, Reiss etc for the bread and butter engagements. Save the couture for the special occasions.

      • minx says:

        Yes, it’s not unfair to critique what the BRF wears and how they spend. It’s part of the deal. They are being kept in luxury and if they don’t want people analyzing their lives, that’s too bad. If you are a private citizen you can do what you like, these people, no.

    • E says:

      Believe you me, we are appalled. Like Clare said, the NHS is in ruins (because the Tories deliberately designed it to be so) and you have people solely relying on food banks (some nurses, etc) through no fault of their own- and yet we are expected to pay for the Royal Family? To add insult to injury, there are now two more mouths to feed- Meghan and Louis. Harry is now 6th in line to the throne, so it should be time for him to fend for himself ( he is independently very wealthy, like William, but they have an aversion to spending their own money whilst they are free to spend ours so easily).

      • formerly known as Amy says:

        If they wanted to fund the NHS they would, the reason the NHS is underfunded is they’re trying to privatize. That has nothing to do with the RF, If you’re worried you need to be joining some groups that are activists with this.

    • T.Fanty says:

      Yes. People aren’t complaining about her spending money on clothes because she is a woman of color – it’s because we pay for it. We complain about all designer royal wardrobes.

      • Sylvia says:

        This is silly. Does *nobody* else recall the criticism the **white** duchess Kate has had lobbed at her?

      • jan90067 says:

        Don’t forget, too, that the £1M amount counts the (around) £250K and the matching earrings worn that night costing @ £10K, which are being said were a gift from C & C (just like the bracelet he gifted KM when she married W). That seriously reduces the £1M amount (and yes, even £650K is staggering).

      • Noodles says:

        This exactly! Kate and Meghan get it equally for the stupid cost of their wardrobes. If Meghan were still earning her own money and paying for her clothes from her own pocket, people wouldn’t care. With the state of things at the moment in the UK, they just look so out of touch and greedy.

      • formerly known as Amy says:

        That price includes her wedding dress which we don’t know that the price of or the engagement dress which we know she didn’t pay full price on.
        This feels like when they said cost of security to the wedding would be 30 million and it ended up being 2 million.
        The british don’t have a real Press just a bunch of drama Queens with an agenda. Maybe this has to do with the fact that MM just sued them for lying about Kate’s court case and they had to retract and pay a fine.
        Leveson 2 Fake news

      • Masamf says:

        @Noodles, I don’t think people wouldn’t care if Meghan was spending her own money. The R&R engagement gown is said to have been her money (lets face it, none of us have the facts, not even Katie Nicols) but still people burned Meghan over the price of that gown even though at that point, Meghan was paying for her own clothes. So regardless of what or when she wears, as long as that outfit is ridiculously expensive, she’ll still be criticized. And TBH, I don’t think Meg is being targeted because she is a WOC, I think people are appalled at how much of taxpayer money these women spend on clothes. Kate too has been burned countless times over her expensive outfits.
        To answer Kaiser’s question, Meghan doesn’t need any expensive wardrobes to look like a million $ powerful woman of color, she is already A powerful WoC. You know what would work for Meghan? Wear affordable clothes that look like a million dollars and work like what any royal woman is supposed to work (I know Kate is the outlier). Show that you are mindful of the UK subjects and how much each family is sacrificing for the BRF upkeep. Be mindful that people that come to see you on your walkabouts don’t come to see your expensive outfits but want to see you as a person that they can relate to. If Meg does that? Trust me, she’ll me more powerful than Oprah Winfrey in no time. But as long as she continues to let her expensive outfits overshadow her causes, whatever she does is all in vain. Mother Theresa is believed to have been one of the most powerful women of her time, but she only wore simple cheap nun habits, non?

      • KB says:

        @Masa or anyone who would know, how much does the average Brit pay to support the royal family in any given year? Do they say how much of your taxes are being used for the BRF?

      • Masamf says:

        It’s hard to know exactly how much each individual contributes towards the BRF as each camp is reporting different and rather conflicting figures. Republicans (small r) claim that each family contributes in range of hundreds of pounds while royalists claim it’s less than a pound per month. Regardless if amounts, people still pay money towards keeping the BRF.

      • KB says:

        I imagine there is also a lot of difference between what people want to see from the BRF as well. Some probably would prefer to see a little frugality and consideration, and others want and expect them to be extravagant and a bit of a spectacle. Hopefully Meghan mixes in a few affordable pieces sometime soon to show people she isn’t going to always wear Prada (if that is indeed the case.)

  3. Rapunzel says:

    So far, she’s really only wearing the expensive stuff around the queen. I give it a pass for right now. She may want to make a good first impression. I also think is possible that maybe she was overcompensating in the fashion area to make sure that people actually saw her as royalty. If that’s the case, I’m sure she realizes now that that sort of backfired, and will adjust.

    Oh and I think those other Givenchy dresses were probably part of the priced tag assigned to her wedding dress. I think they were all made at the same time. So I’m not sure if these prices are accurate.

    • Becks1 says:

      Agree with all points.

      She wore a “relatively” affordable dress for the garden party with Prince Charles (as royal clothes go) and since then we have only seen her at events with the queen. so, I give her a pass for expensive couture.

    • Toot says:

      Exactly! Meghan wore the expensive clothes when she was with the Queen, and the Givenchy pieces were probably made when her dress was made.

    • MrsBump says:

      But why would the Queen require Meghan to wear bespoke couture in her presence? Especially since the Queen herself has her clothes done by a KP seamstress.
      Of course Meghan is expected to look good, but it need not come with a bespoke couture price tag. To look down upon Kate for wearing high street clothes is a little unfair, yes she wore a little too much Zara, but also LK Benett, Reiss etc, which many professional women wear in the UK.
      PR wise i believe it is a better strategy than haute couture in 3/4 events. If at every event Meghan turns up wearing thousands of pounds of new clothing, people would probably rather she didn’t attend said event.

      • lobbit says:

        Let’s be real here: the Queen doesn’t have her clothes done by a KP seamstress. She has an in-house couturier and she works with a couple of designers as well. Everything she wears is bespoke.

        While I don’t think the Queen requires couture for the firm, she’s probably not opposed to it – and she might even encourage it. I read that Fergie was a bit of a fashion disaster when she first married into the family, but then she started getting a dress allowance as a *personal gift* from the Queen–she put it to very good use at Yves Saint Laurent, apparently.

      • Becks1 says:

        Yes the queen’s clothes are all basically bespoke.

        Re: Meghan, I don’t think the queen requires her to wear bespoke, but I think it’s rather that Meghan wants to make sure she gets exactly what she wants in an outfit at this stage, and she wants to make sure that she looks….serious? Royal? IDK how to put it but I don’t blame her for thinking “omg, I have another event with the Queen with this week, I need to elevate my game.”

        Like I’ve said numerous times on here (and Kaiser says in the post), if she continues to wear expensive bespoke outfits to every single event, I’ll join in the criticism. But right now we have only seen her at a handful of events post-wedding and they have all been fairly high profile events.

        Like I don’t think its fair to say that her Trooping outfit cost more than Kate’s first few outfits post marriage; you need to compare Kate’s Trooping outfits to Meghan’s.

        I do understand the criticism about the “general” spending of the royal family, and think those are definitely some fair points, but when so much is aimed directly at Meghan while people praise Kate for her custom outfits for post-baby appearances that she wears once – its a little much.

      • MrsBump says:

        i’ve never heard of the term in house couturier before, but the word couturier is simply french for tailor/seamstress. Obviously it will be bespoke but at a fraction of the costs of the french fashion houses.
        I don’t understand why Kate / Meghan don’t adopt the same approach and keep the truly expensive gowns for state occasions.
        if Meghan thinks that wearing over priced , ill fitting clothes will make her look serious, then she needs to rethink her strategy, as the price tag of her outfits is overshadowing whatever work she is doing.

      • lobbit says:

        In-house couturier = in-house design team. We’re not talking about a seamstress here. This is an entire team that the Queen employs to design custom pieces and and then make them by hand. This is in addition to the bespoke pieces she commissions from Stewart Parvin and other designers.

      • MrsBump says:

        @Lobbit – you are not addressing the real point, which is that both kate and meghan could avail the same in house design team ( or whatever you wish to call them) and save the british tax payers several million pounds.

      • aaa says:

        The Queen always looks impeccable, her clothes are never wrinkled, baggy, nor too tight. It costs a pretty penny to make that happen.

        Angela Kelly, the Queen’s dresser is in-house in more ways than one, one of her perks is a grace and favor home in Windsor Great Park.

      • aaa says:

        My guess would be that if Kate, Meghan and I will throw in Sophie were being dressed by an in house team like the Queen that the cost of dressing them would not decrease, rather the costs of dressing royal women would increase significantly.

      • lobbit says:

        @Mrs. Bump – your real point is driven by an inaccurate characterization of the Queen’s staff, which I’ve pointed out in both of my comments: She does not employ “a seamstress.” She has a small army of “dressers” in place to design, craft, style, and curate her wardrobe. We are talking about several salary lines + benefits. Bottom line: it’s not cheap. But having an in-house team is sort of brilliant because it means that the public will never know how much the Queen spends to look as good as she does – and without knowing, how can you compare it to what Kate and Meghan spend on their clothes?

        In any case, I wouldn’t assume that Meghan and Kate could simply throw their wardrobe needs in with the Queen’s. Why on earth would the Queen share? And even if she did, her team would have to expand considerably to accommodate all three women.

      • MrsBump says:

        Employing British people to do the job is far better than throwing tens of thousands for one outfit. As with any designer item, the name of the designer adds a significant markup to the final price.
        A team of people creating their clothes, would in the long run work out cheaper.

      • Masamf says:

        @MrsBump, the reason Kate and Meghan (and other royal women) wedding dresses were ridiculously expensive is because they hired a team of people to make this one dress. I’m not sure if you realise how expensive it would be to keep a team of people on the payroll just for purposes of making the duchesses’ outfits. And needless to say, each duchess would require their own team. The queen can afford that, the duchesses can’t. A person that works for minimum wage in the UK earns about 7 pounds/hour, that’s 1200pounds/month and that’s not factoring in benefits. If the duchesses hire a team say of 3 people, that’s already 5k/month in wages only, that is if their team works for minimum wage. If they earn more, that price doubles etc. And this team is not going to work like a factory, they only make a outfit as needed. So how is that cheaper than buying a 5k dress every other month? Please explain your logic.

  4. Scram says:

    Yet is the keyword here. Yet. It’s too early to be evaluating anything, positive or negative, we have no idea what she’s going to be like in the longterm. I’m not saying we have to wait five years to reach a conclusion, but we can at least wait until the end of 2018. I find it very irritating to read articles like this when she’s only been out and about for six or seven weeks.

    As for neutrals, no one is stifling her the girl likes neutrals. If she plans on being seen regularly she should add more color to her rotation to give the public more to look at. Or at least include more texture and pattern to her neutrals. I could do without the buttons, or this specific style of buttons, too though. And her clothes aren’t too big omg

    • Bella DuPont says:

      Only problem is, the knives are out for her already……the traps have been set and are just waiting for her to fall in and she seem to be heading straight for those traps.

      The DM has built the narrative and are judiciously driving it along. Other outlets seem to be picking up on it…..and now, this fictional 1 million pound figure is gaining ground as well. It’s not easy to defend against it when she’s currently wearing 10,000 pound bespoke outfits at every event.

      it feels like i’m watching this movie in slow motion and i can see how it’s going to end, but there’s not really much i can do to stop it.

    • Masamf says:

      @Bella DuPont
      If the DM wants to build a narrative, they will do so either way. If she wears cheap outfits, it will be “she is so disrespectful to the queen she wears $500 outfits” etc. She can’t win. They are already building a narrative around her crossed legs, like she is the only royal woman that ever crossed her legs at the knees. I think for now Meghan is alright, she just needs to tone it down a notch from here onwards. Ofcourse there should be times and events where wearing a bespoke outfits will be acceptable (at least to me) but those should be few. I guess what Im saying is that Meghan basing her outfits on what the DM our the media in general will say is a losing battle for her to even start.
      And I don’t care what everybody on here says, Meghan’s outfits are NOT ill-fitting.

      • Bella DuPont says:


        I can’t really see anybody complaining that her $500 outfit is too cheap for the Queen. Not if it’s reasonably well made.

        She can absolutely win if she stays clear of radioactive areas like politics and race. And if she comes across as reasonable and with at least a small sense of frugality. Mix and match things…..high and low. She’s do fine with that.

        Wall to wall bespoke is asking for trouble.

    • minx says:

      Agree about the color. The Prada suit would have been outstanding with a brighter colored top or bottom and a pencil skirt. Meghan’s coloring allows her to wear many hues that I, for instance, can’t wear because of somwhat sallow skin. Actually I can’t think of a color she couldn’t wear.

  5. cannibell says:

    If I could pick a stylist/fashion adviser for Meghan as she figures this all out, it would be Michelle Obama, hands-down.

    She always nailed it.

    • Milla says:

      Different roles and body types. Obama is amazing dresser, she knows her body and she knows how to carry herself.

      Markle looks like a doll now. Nothing is fitted, her body looks weird, and btw she has nice body, the only thing she needs is a dress or a suit to create more waist. But her stylist is making her wear belts all the time and it’s an ok trick but it doesn’t work all the time. Her make up is bad and she just looks like she’s not comfortable.

      • Melania says:

        Meghan hasn’t a stylist atm. It was reported by British press.

      • jan90067 says:

        She uses/has used her BFF Jessica Mulrooney (sp?) who lives in Canada. I wouldn’t be surprised if she still Skypes/FaceTimes with her regarding outfits.

        Personally, I think Meg should hire whoever dressed her on Suits and hire her/him. Just wear those clothes a *schooch* looser (as they were made to be *very* tight on the show for a reason), but that was an amazing look for her, professionally. Also, she dressed fabulously during the engagement period. She could definitely do those looks on a bit of a “higher end” (like the A McQ pantsuit for that awards dinner she attended with Harry). THAT was her best look to date, IMO.

      • crazydaisy says:

        I miss Meghan’s CBK-inspired style! Wasn’t that classy enough for a royal? She looked so great then! Everything she’s worn since the wedding looks stupid (horrible hats), washed out (bland colors), too fussy (that curtain dress!) or just plain old unflattering. The fact that each outfit costs thousands of pounds makes the sting worse.

    • MS says:

      It’s funny that you use Mrs. Obama as role model because she was ripped to shreds for how she dressed and the expense of her clothes. Nothing she did was good enough for a lot of people, and I’m seeing the same type of insults about Meghan.

      • Bella DuPont says:

        Stupid question though…….is there a clothing allowance for the office of the first lady? (i’m thinking there must be, surely)….

      • Masamf says:

        IKR? Michelle caught such flack about her body and her outfits, it was really brutal. I have hats off for MO because she is one classy lady TBH. And Meghan is going through the same insult and abuse period, better buckle up real tight. In one sentence a poster will say how Meghan’s body is boxy with with matchstick legs, in the next sentence same poster will say how beautiful Meghan is, its very confusing. Like which is it? I guess I’ll never understand these categorizing of people’s bodies but I think, at the end of the day as long as she feels good about what she wears, its all good. If she feels confident with her makeup game, that’s al that counts, you can’t please everybody. At the end of the day, her detractors will always be negative regardless of what she does. I believe that, as long as her outfits are reasonably priced, the rest don’t really matter, haters will always hate regardless.

      • okay_then says:

        @Masam, Meghan’s body shape is boxy. That is not a criticism. Pear-shaped, apple shaped, rectangular/boxy shaped, etc., are all ways to describe our bodies!

      • minx says:

        First Ladies pay out of pocket for their clothing. As I understand it, some designers will gift a dress if it is for a special historical event. The gown can be put aside for display later.

      • cannibell says:

        Michelle might have gotten ripped to shreds, but I thought her style choices (and she, just as a human, too) were fabulous – and still do. And yes, the roles aren’t quite the same, but they’re similar in that they’re both high-profile and require the acquisition of a unique style vocabulary. We’re watching the Duchess of Sussex figure it out – and I’m sure she will.

  6. Becks1 says:

    Yeah I’m on team, “if she’s still wearing 10k couture dresses to every event in a year, then I’ll have more of an opinion.” The million dollar price tag is unfair since it includes her wedding dresses (was Kate’s dress ever included in the annual cost of her clothes? Serious question.)

    Right now she has done relatively few royal events, and most have been with the queen. I can see why she is going for couture and going for neutrals. I think as she finds her footing and gets more comfortable fashion-wise we will see more of a mix and match of high and low end pieces and more color.

    • Scram says:

      I don’t believe Kate’s wedding dress was included because her family paid for it.

      • Becks1 says:

        Ah good point. I had forgotten about that.

      • Deedee says:

        Meanwhile, back at Middleton Ranch, there were expensive “security upgrades” and whatnot.

      • MrsBump says:

        @Deedee – were those billed to the tax payer too ?

      • homeslice says:

        Deedee, when Harry and Meg start a family and need a bigger place and start renos and upgrade security, will you have a problem with that? When they get their country home and they want a complete re-do, is that a problem? Because there is exactly no evidence right now that Harry and Megs are going to be some super duper special unicorn couple who live frugally. Harry is as work shy as Kate and Wills have been. I doubt that’s going to change…at all. We will see…

      • magnoliarose says:


        Yes, they were billed to the taxpayers. The Middletons have received a lot of taxpayer perks. The renovations to their house were unnecessary and the expense was outrageous. Have you ever heard of such of thing for any other inlaws?
        Someone here outlined them awhile ago I was surprised it wasn’t a scandal.

      • Digital Unicorn says:

        @MrsBump – yes they were, the taxpayer footed the bill under ‘security upgrades’ which included turning an outdoor building into self contained flats, repaving the driveway and expanding a garage. There were also renovations done internally – from what I can recall the seller said the property needed a lot of work done to it to modernise it.

        The Middleton’s also got a lot of antique furniture from the Royal storage – now whether they are loans or gifts we don’t know but the Middleton’s have received a LOT of freebies from their royal connections over the years. William is very good at demanding things for them and himself.

        These upgrades add value to the property, value that the taxpayer won’t get back and value that the Mids will pocket if they ever sell Buckleberry.

      • okay_then says:

        Umm, haven’t you guys heard that Meghan and Harry are already costing us thousands upon thousands for their rental in the Cotswolds? Our police force had to ask the government for extra money to cover the security costs! They could be living at one of the already security filled places the Queen owns. As for the Midds, Camilla’s family receive taxpayer-funded security too. This is normal. I’m sure Meghan’s mum has security in place as well. Middleton Manor seems to be a second home for Kate and the kids, so it makes sense that extra security is in place at their home.

      • aaa says:

        Middleton Manor is a location frequently visited by two future Kings, a future Queen consort and the other children of the future King and Queen.

        Any location visited by royals will be made secure. I am fairly certain that the one-time costs incurred plus the ongoing costs for making Middleton Manor safe is less than if William and his family were frequenting various non-royal locations for their recreational and holiday jaunts.

      • Masamf says:

        In all honesty, no one really knows who paid for Meghan’s wedding dress, nobody. It was said at the wedding that Meghan paid for her own dress. So to say that it should be counted in her expenses because it was paid by the BRF is very unfair on the British media part (and on Nicholls’ part), we don’t have the facts surrounding that. I’m not sure where the British media (or Nicholls for that matter) got the info that PoW bought the dress but given that the British media (and Nicholls) are more William/Kate/Middleton leaning than anything else, I take whatever they all say with a huge chunk of salt as they all prone to distort facts to suit their narratives. If Harry and Meghan are not saying where they went for their honeymoon, there’s no way they’re divulging any info about who paid for her outfits, and especially not to Katie Nicholls. Nicholls wrote an article about how Harry met Meghan and it is the most bizarrely inaccurate story about Harry that I have ever read from this woman, I no longer trust anything she says, she is just like Piers Morgan, just full of themselves and carrying themselves like they have any facts when in actuality they have none.

      • jan90067 says:

        The extra security was put in place at Buckleberry due to the amount of time W & K (esp. K and the kids) spend there. You can’t expect that Kate would never visit/stay with family; security needed to be in place.

        Who knows… if the (past) married-ins families were more embraced, perhaps all those marriages wouldn’t have gone belly-up.

      • Addie says:

        I have no problem with the Middleton’s having security upgrades but the taxpayer should not be expected to pay for everything. There needs to be a limit to taxpayers’ financial obligation to the Windsor’s and larger family. They have billions and could/ should have undertaken this upgrade themselves.

  7. Beth says:

    These blah, ill-fitting clothes are a little too pricey, so I can understand why taxpayers are disappointed. I see clothes that are more colorful and stylish at places at the mall that cost thousands less than Meghans dull royal wardrobe

  8. Melania says:

    Right now, Meghan is buying cotoure dresses because she has just started her life as a Duchess and she’s building her wardrobe. It ‘a logical thing because I don’t think she had many clothes suitable for this new life. Things will settle down over the months.
    But naturally this is yet another opportunity for racists and classics to show their true colors with articles on this subject which have the sole purpose of discrediting her.

    • Honey says:

      I can agree with this but I just want the clothes to fit. That’s all. I actually don’t care about the costs.

    • Maria says:

      I don’t get that it’s racist to think that paying $10,000 for the shirtwaist dress she wore at Ascot was a tad pricey. And it seems perfectly ok while she is still finding her feet to pay exorbitant prices for dresses. I like her style but I can see why taxpayers wouldn’t be happy.
      And as far as criticizing her for the amount she spends on clothes, this site critises Kate all the time for her clothing choices and expenses. So if it is racism to criticize Meghan, what would you call it when Kate is equally raked over the coals? And the discussion is about how much they pay for outfits, not Kate’s work ethic.

      • Becks1 says:

        But the work ethic is exactly why Kate gets raked over the coals for her clothing expenses. People have said ad nauseum on here that if Kate worked more, no one would bat an eye at what she wears, cost-wise (or not too many eyes, ha.) Its when she does one engagement a month and 9 times out of 10 shows up in a new, expensive outfit. If Kate was doing 300 engagements a year, she would escape so much of the current criticism.

      • Digital Unicorn says:

        What Becks1 says – on the rare occasion Katie Keen graces the public or one of her patronages with her presence she wear a brand new outfit costing thousands, which you will see her only wear that once. if she worked more then many people, myself included, wouldn’t call her out on her shopping habits. Plus there is her habit of buying the same dress/coat dress in different colours – each costing several thousand pounds a pop. Again she wouldn’t get so much flack if they were all different styles.

      • Sylvia says:

        I’m in complete agreement with you, Maria. Seems like a lazy reflex to blame all criticism of Meghan on her mixed race heritage. It would appear that some Americans have a tendency to hyper-focus on/obsess over race.

      • MrsBump says:

        @becks1 –

        i’m really surprised by the assertion that doing more engagements means it’s ok to spend hundreds of thousands on clothes especially since the clothes don’t get re-used all that much.
        Frankly if Kate / Meghan start doing more engagements, each time costing the tax payers thousands of pounds, maybe they should just stay home and write a check to those charities they support.

      • Becks1 says:

        @MrsBump I think the hope would be if Kate were doing 300 engagements a year she would repeat “some” of the outfits. So even if her spending doubled, but her engagements tripled, people would criticize less.

      • MrsBump says:

        frankly there are greater chances that both Kate & Meghan would simply look at this as an opportunity to spend more and use the number of engagements to justify their frivolity.
        As someone mentioned below citing Letizia as an example, their clothing budgets should capped.
        There is simply no excuse to spend this much on haute couture, nobody needs a bespoke outfit from Givenchy to go the races or McQueen to stand on a balcony. Especially when Letizia wearing Mango/Zara looks better than both Duchesses.

      • magnoliarose says:


        Who said ALL criticism? Where is that written? It is lazier to disregard the concept with very little thought. If you are from the UK then maybe you should be a little more concerned with it since you all voted to destroy your economy via Brexit based on it.

      • formerly known as Amy says:

        @Maria Where did you find the price of that shirt dress?
        I would like a link that’s not the dailymail, who claimed the price of security for the wedding would be 30 mill turns out its 2 million.

      • okay_then says:

        I agree, Sylvia. For the majority of us in the UK, Meghan is biracial (people from a biracial background are the fastest growing ethnicity here in the UK so many people can and do relate to Meghan), and I haven’t heard any amount of racism thrown at her. I’m not including the media/forums because they have their own hate-filled agenda. And @ Magnolia Rose, plz don’t lump us all together. In the same breath, I can say you all destroyed your country by voting for that fool you call a President! My city (London) did not vote for Brexit, it was the xenophobic Little Englanders who have done the most damage, spurred on by some vile sections of the media.

      • minx says:

        Elle priced similar Givenchy shirt dresses at about $2300, the belt at $400, shoes about $900. They did say that MM’s dress could have been bespoke so maybe cost more.

    • homeslice says:

      Problem is all the expensive clothes she has worn (except for the caped dress which is prob a sheath underneath) cannot really be worn again. Where is she going to wear the Ascot or Trooping dresses again?? I don’t see it.
      I feel for the Brits disgusted by this. There is absolutely no reason for either Kate or Meg to wear couture for public events. If they want pricey clothes, pay for it themselves.

      • Digital Unicorn says:

        Actually, I thought the Trooping outfit was a dress with a jacket which can be worn as separates. The Ascot dress is a garden party dress and could be paired with a nice jacket. As for the caped Givenchy dress, she could easily wear it without the cape but it depends on whether its attached to the dress.

        She needs a professional stylist – any stylist worth their salt can take any outfit and make it look new and different.

      • Addie says:

        The cape is not attached to the dress; there was a picture of her at that engagement without it.

        Some of the items are hard to see lasting because they are too ‘of the moment’ eg the asymmetrical skirt, unless a tailor alters it. Yes, she needs a professional stylist. Charlie Anderson did a great job with Beatrice a few years back. She’d be a great choice.

      • jan90067 says:

        The caped Givenchy does separate. There was a pic of Meghan inside with the cape part taken off. It was a pencil sheath dress under. So yes, that can be worn again with/without a blazer or another type of jacket (or without!) and another colored belt.

  9. Belluga says:

    Again, I’m waiting for her more “standard” engagements to judge. Her pre-wedding professional wardrobe will suit those well, unlike the Trooping, Ascot, outing/sleepover with Liz, which are more formal and not like anything she’ll have attended before in terms of dress code.

  10. Eliza says:

    If she’s still finding her style why is she having Charles drop 10k on experiments? Im all for filling your closet with expensive but classic pieces that you’ll wear again. But I think many of these will go into the back of the closet never to be seen again as they won’t fall into her ultimate royal-style in the end.

    • whatever says:

      ^ stop talking sense lol 😃

    • Missy says:

      I don’t understand the issue. Meghan is not receiving any more or any less than the other members of the royal family. The only frugal family member I know of is Princess Anne. She just alters her clothes from 30 years ago. Meghan hasn’t been a member of the family long enough for me to make a judgment on what she will wear in the future.

    • okay_then says:

      Yesss to your second sentence. Classic pieces are always worth the money, IMO. But I don’t see many key pieces in Meghan’s new wardrobe. She’s buying the trendy pieces like asymmetrical skirts and dresses. The Oscar De La Renta dress was a disaster, she probably won’t wear it again. Maybe someone else can chime in, but I don’t think Kate was spending like this right after the wedding! The criticisms of her couture pieces seem valid.

      • Nic919 says:

        Kate barely did any engagements following the wedding until the first tour to Canada and then she was wearing McQueen outfits that were in the thousands. No one was complaining about the cost of her outfits because people expected that she was actually going to do some work moving forward. (Anti monarchists types were likely complaining about the costs of the wedding and the tour, but not in the royal blogosphere).

      • minx says:

        The Oscar de la Renta can be repurposed into a pretty picnic table cloth, with enough left over for napkins.

      • Addie says:

        @minx – a table cloth, napkins, plus outfits for the van Trapp family singers.
        @Nic919 – it is precisely because Kate has been so profligate and lazy that the result is distrust/ wariness for the next woman who comes into the orbit of public funding, and that happens to be Meghan. Put that together with austerity measures for seven plus years and you can understand the anger.

  11. Darla says:

    I dunno, to me it’s refreshing that her clothes aren’t tight. I am so sick and tired of seeing the Trump women parade around in outfits 2 sizes too small. And IMO, that white halter gown is to die for.

    • Digital Unicorn says:

      I personally prefer my clothes to be a bit loose in fit, it makes me more comfortable. Its preferable than showing off everything God gave you when wearing super tight Zara jeans to a monastery in Bhutan.

    • Beth says:

      Nobody wants Meghan wearing too tight clothes. There’s a difference between clothes that fit right, and being tight.

      • Scram says:

        And there’s a difference between clothes “overwhelming her tiny body” and clothes skimming her frame which is what I’d argue the majority of hers do. It’s all opinion and preference.

      • Becks1 says:

        Agreed @Scram. I admit that some of her coats this past winter did overwhelm her, and I am interested to see if she keeps up that pattern/habit next winter, but most of her current outfits just aren’t tight. Her dress at Ascot got a lot of criticism for “being too big” but if you looked at the shoulders and such, it fit her. It was just looser than what we may have expected. And her outfit at BP last week certainly fit her well. Her Trooping suit fit her beautifully but all people could talk about were her bare shoulders.

    • Missy says:

      I think some people are confusing Meghan’s Suits wardrobe with her real personal style. Her clothes were loose before she got married. I’ve seen some of the outfits that she wore on the red carpet, and not everything was formfitting. She very much has the laid back California style.

      • jan90067 says:

        Missy, I was just going to post the same thing! (And I did say something about it above 😊). Suits outfits were made to be tight on purpose, for all the actresses. I would love to see her in some of the same looks, just a *bit* looser. She looked amazing on the show. Whoever helped her pick out/fit that McQueen pantsuit should help her find clothes. That fit her to perfection!

      • okay_then says:

        McQueen pieces are beautifully tailored, that’s why the fit was good. Tbh, I don’t understand the praise over that outfit because many professional women wear the same outfit every day.

    • magnoliarose says:

      I like looser fits and find them fresher looking. Hers are too big though and not tailored correctly. She has a hard frame to dress without a good tailor because she has tiny limbs and a boxier torso. Like I said though it is early days for her and she will learn.

      • formerly known as Amy says:

        Her clothes are tailored correctly, they fit her shoulders and her waist. They are just loose fitting and that’s not a bad thing.

      • Brandy Alexander says:

        Her 2nd day polo outfit showed she doesn’t have to do all super loose all the time. I thought the leggings with a loose blouse looked really cute. I’m surprised it wasn’t covered here. I think she’s trying too hard to find a “conservative look” on her royal engagements. (Or maybe they really do have a bunch of stupid dress rules. It would explain why so much of it beckons to Kate’s choices)

      • magnoliarose says:

        I liked her polo Day 2 outfit too. It wasn’t covered but she did look good.

        I agree Brandy Alexander, she can’t find her footing with the royal dress code. I think part of the problem for her and Kate is that the protocols aren’t really in fashion. Hats aren’t popular right now so they have to find outfits that can carry hats or outfits that are demure, youthful enough and in style. Who is designing like that right now?

      • okay_then says:

        @MagnoliaRose, lol I didn’t agree with your other comment, but I agree with this. She desperately needs a good tailor. Some of her clothes have been ill-fitting. At this price point, they should be perfect.

      • Brandy Alexander says:

        I haven’t even hated all of the royal looks (but I did loathe the Ascot shirt dress. I also hate Ascot and am disappointed she attended, as I am generally not in favor of horse racing, but I digress…). I just think her casual look is generally better. I think Burberry would serve her well, and maybe even St. John’s? Or some vintage Chanel?

        And I totally agree with you that she needs an excellent tailor. People don’t like Kate’s clothes generally, but they are always well fitted. I think Meghan should go to Kate’s tailor.

      • KB says:

        The length of her coats didn’t help matters either. She was really swimming in those long coats.

  12. HK9 says:

    I was waiting for this post were everyone expects her to curate some unicorn wardrobe where everything is fabulous for next to nothing. That wardrobe doesn’t exist because as a working woman who is currently having trouble finding things that last that don’t cost a lot, I don’t expect a Duchess to turn up in cheap clothes. Yes, yes, I know, she should keep it moderate price wise but if you’re doing engagements with the Queen, the things you wear are going to cost something. In her early engagements with Harry, her clothes were very practical which was great, but in general, I expect to see a lot of designer labels on her back.

    • Honey says:

      I agree. It really doesn’t exist. Just finding dress slacks that don’t contain that clingy, stretchy material is nearly impossible. Also, quality leather shoes: what happened? who sales them? It used to be so easy to pull together a professional wardrobe on a moderate to a sometimes expensive budget but that is nearly impossible now. The quality is no longer there for people on a moderate budget. A wide chasm has opened between price and quality that only merges at the very high-end. Everything else below that merge point has been Old Navied in terms of style and quality of clothes—casual and cute if you are young, petite or slimish but not built to last over time.

      • HK9 says:

        Right now I’m in shoe hell. I’m a size 10/11 and looking for leather shoes is ridiculous. They want rent money and a kidney for them.

      • jan90067 says:

        Try finding a cute, stylish shoe with adequate padding (for a Morton’s Neuroma foot). All of those shoes now have a 3-4″ heel and a paper thin sole.

        HK9, I agree! It’s literally shoe hell! And I wear a size 7 1/2-8… shouldn’t be so hard!

      • Brandy Alexander says:

        And why are there no longer jeans that are just 100% denim?!? These jeans with the spandex are so not comfortable like the jeans of my youth.

      • Cate says:

        Yes, women’s clothing quality in particular has gotten terrible. I was visiting my parents recently and helping to clear some things out, I found some old jeans and Gap t-shirts of mine from HS (nearly 20 years ago). The fabric on both was so much thicker and clearly more durable, I actually took the jeans with me and have started wearing them again (fortunately they were purchased right before low-rise jeans started showing up everywhere so I can still get away with them). If I buy a pair of jeans these days they seem to be busted within a year. I would be willing to spend for a more expensive pair IF I knew they would last longer, but it seems that price is not necessarily indicative of quality unless you are going extremely high-end.

      • Brandy Alexander says:

        Cate, I bet they’re super soft too. I miss that about real denim. Breaking them in was tough, but once they were, I could wear them 24/7!

    • MrsBump says:

      i can’t commend on American brands, but having lived and worked in the UK, it is perfectly possible to look put together with quality clothing by purchasing from the higher end of the high street : LK Bennet, Reiss, Geiger, Whistles etc etc.

  13. Vanessa says:

    My thing is we don’t know how much every thing is costing it’s all guessing until the royal reveal the actually budgets for Meghan for all the expects saying she shouldn’t be wearing couture . It’s ridiculous they know damn well that if Meghan show up to a event with the queen in a low budget outfit they would criticize her days about her not takings her role seriously to me it does seem a little overly racist with all of sudden everyone is Meghan is over spending Kate already she can’t wear couture it’s too early it’s like now people are so concerned with the price tags . Because it’s Meghan it does seem like police of black woman

    • Addie says:

      That won’t happen. Charles puts the sons and wives under a general heading “Other Household Expenses”. He used to itemise costs when William and Kate got married but the high expenditure drew such public anger he moved to a lump sum where nothing is disclosed.

      • Masamf says:

        😀😀😀😀smart guy that PoW is. Sometimes some people can be petty.

      • Addie says:

        More like a scoundrel. The Duchy of Cornwall belongs to the public, and hence Charles is accountable for its expenditure. It’s not private money. He, with the Queen, successfully argued to be exempt from Freedom of Information requests so a lot of what should be transparent is not. Likewise, what his sons and their wives are allocated is also a matter of public interest and their right to know. It’s certainly not ‘petty’. By rights, Charles should be providing for his family from private funds, not Duchy funds, but gets around it by simply labeling it ‘household expenditure. Just another example of tricky accounting, greed and dishonesty.

      • formerly known as Amy says:

        The Duchy of Cornwall has always existed to provide funding to the PoW. When exactly did it start belonging to the public?

  14. Missy says:

    Good grief! She hasn’t been married more than two months. Can we give this woman some time to find her way? Meghan never said she wanted to be a fashion icon. I think we are projecting our tastes and expectations onto her.

  15. Thatsallfolks says:

    Why do you think she’s so nice to Charles. He’s paying for everything.

  16. Pris says:

    I think Meghan or Harry and the palace are not advising her or being really tone deaf and lacking in common sense. Meghan is new to the scene and one of her first outfits was a $75,000 dress. Why didn’t anyone realize it would raise eyebrows?

    Now we’ve had the bespoke Carolina Herrera, Givenchy, and Prada all in a row, (plus the $6000 Oscar De La Renta) PR wise the image that she is projecting is that she spends a lot of money on clothes. First impressions are important and they stick with you.

    Kate very early on was called “The Queen of High Street” and “The Queen of Recycling” (her engagement photo dress was Reiss and then she recycled it in Canada, for example) and the titles and praise for being thrifty have stuck.

    Meghan needs to very quickly make sure that her image doesn’t start off as just wasting tax payer dollars on clothes. No one needs to spend $18,000 on a dress especially when it’s not your own money.

    • Wowsers says:

      +1 pris. It’s kind of surprising/concerning that suddenly she’s got a taste for couture… When it’s not on her dime anymore.

    • Maria says:

      I agree. So far the optics aren’t very good. It’s all about public perception. Her first priority should be to get a decent stylist.

    • May says:

      Also, the impression she gives is that she is avoiding British labels on purpose. And that’s another big PR point.

    • Missy says:

      The concern trolls are here. Everyone is so concerned about Meghan’s spending, optics, reputation, etc. as if the other members of the Royal Family haven’t spent lots of money on clothes and renovations. And don’t think I’m not catching on to the Kate vs Meghan comparison as if Kate didn’t wear expensive gowns and dresses that have never been seen again. The only people who are concerned about optics, fittings, price tags are the people who nitpick and dislike Meghan anyway.

      • MeghanNotMarkle says:

        Well, the post is about Meghan’s wardrobe spending so yeah, the comments are going to be directed at her. But that doesn’t mean some of us don’t think Kate is wasteful, too. She drops plenty of Charle’s duchy funds on ugly button-laden granny dresses.

      • homeslice says:

        Exactly. Kate has been ripped up and down over expenditures. The stans can’t take that Meg will deserve and get the same treatment.

      • Honey says:

        You said it so much better than I could about the concern trolling. Kate has at least 6 lace doily dresses which collectively cost enough to pay off my student loans, which are way up there. I’m not trying to err on the side of bothism here but as a newly minted Duchess both of them were probably given carte blanche in their first year to build a necessary wardrobe as part indulgence and as part practical business matter. Heck, if I married into a royal family I would expect it.

        Their money makes our money look like chicken feed. For many of us, the two aren’t comparable. Their frugal is not our frugal.

      • Millenial says:

        I really like Meghan and I think it’s okay to be concerned. I really want to see her do well and I think it’s okay to float that idea that she’s either getting bad advice or no advice on the optics of her clothing choices so far. No big conspiracy here. We’ve seen Kate get dragged for years and know it will only be worse for Meghan.

      • Digital Unicorn says:

        I don’t like the amounts of money that is spent on their clothes but I do understand that the high end designer fashion goes a long way in promoting that ‘royal’ image. My issue is the lack of ROI that the tax payer receives in terms of public engagements etc.. Meg is spending a lot on clothes but she has also done a lot of public appearances in support of her new role, Kate spends more yet we see less of her out and about doing her duty.

        Its the same with Melania Trump, she spends a lot on her clothes yet she is rarely seen in public. You can bet that the American taxpayer is paying for that nice designer wardrobe.

      • Lizabeth says:

        I’m not defending MT’s actions but US taxpayers don’t pay for the clothes of first ladies @digitalunicorn. Some have been criticized in the past for pricey stuff they’ve worn (Jackie K, Nancy R, in particular) but their wardrobes aren’t taxpayer-funded. Neither is WH non-banquet food for the family. Comparing Meghan to a first lady isn’t apt. A better comparison is Kate (same age and all) or Sophie (husband far down in succession as is Meghan’s)

      • minx says:

        Digital Unicorn, we don’t pay for a First Lady’s clothing. Nearly every modern day president has either been very wealthy or wealthy enough that they didn’t have to worry about the cost of clothing too much. I said upthread that sometimes First Ladies are gifted designer dresses if it’s for a special or historical occasion. Before Trump (ugh) First Ladies were supposed to dress nicely but not too expensively. It was considered bad taste to be too lavishly dressed (even though taxpayers weren’t even picking up the tab). Now, of course, the Trumps don’t care what message they send. The pricier the better.
        Michelle was great at mixing less expensive clothes
        with high end pieces.
        Also, a First Lady only has that title for eight years tops. Then her wardrobe is her own business.

      • Lizabeth says:

        That’s mostly true @ Minx. B. Bush, L. Bush, Lady Bird J, Betty F all fit the mold of nicely dressed but not too glamorous 1st Ladies. But Melania isn’t the first to go designer glam– Nancy R was accused of dressing too “Hollywood” and Jackie K of dressing too French/European (with Chanel), and Michelle O was just criticized so even when it’s not taxpayer money being spent people criticize the clothes high-profile women wear.

    • Addie says:

      It’s because they live in their own PR-created bubble. They don’t understand public reaction as they have yes men and women agreeing with them. So easy to come off the rails with no boundaries.

    • okay_then says:

      They are tone deaf tho. I don’t know why people thought Meghan would be any different? I could understand if she was wearing couture pre-Harry or during the dating/engagement period, but her newfound taste for couture has been awoken after marriage. Lol

    • Aurelia says:

      Kate;s blue engagement dress was Issa. But I get what you mean.

  17. Wowsers says:

    It’s the optics, the optics. If we are talking about the public purse, who cares, it’s a drop in the ocean. But. If Meghan wants to win the PR game she needs to consider – how does a whole bunch of couture look to a country still suffering through austerity? Emergency rooms short of vital drugs. Etc etc. Meghan is a junior member of the Royal family – after all. That’s the public mood she’s facing.

    Frankly for someone of her intelligence I’m surprised she hasn’t read the mood better and worn some (ethical) high street.

    • Elaine says:

      I agree. Too bad Emilia Wickstead is such a witch. Sophie Wessex seems to be a kind of ambassador for her, and nearly always look appropriate. While Meghan was standing there in a five figure Givenchy dress, Sophie’s was 1/10 the price and still looked amazing.

      I’m rooting for Megs to return to Victoria Beckham, maybe a bit of Catherine Walker and perhaps even try Cefinn, Samantha Cameron’s label.

      There are lovely options in that range. No need to break the bank.

      • Honey says:

        @ Elaine: isn’t Catherine Walker the designer brand that supplies everybody and their Moma with coat dresses? If yes, then no to that brand. There is no reason for anyone to wear coat dresses of that design, especially women in their 30s.

      • formerly known as Amy says:

        Meghan was never going to win the PR game atleast in the MSM they hated her from day 1.

      • Elaine says:

        @Honey. Yes, lol, Catherine Walker is a designer brand that dresses its clients in elegant, Royal-appropriate clothing. Some clients may be older, I do not share your ageism. But there are UK designers who may be considered more modern yet still cost effective. Say 1500 pounds versus 10,000.

        Megs could try Beulah, or Susannah. Eugenie wears a lot of her.

        My point was, there are affordable options which will not see her tagged as a latter-day Marie Antoinette.

        She will be criticized no matter what she does. But some barbs are more damaging than others. Being called a wasteful, extravagantly high-spender, is one of them. Fingers crossed she will course correct and avoid that label (pun intended). ;-)

      • formerly known as Amy says:

        HELL No to catherine walker and her ugly coat dresses.
        Where is everyone getting this 10k being thrown aound i need links.

    • Sue says:

      Yes, @WOWSERS
      Indeed ethical clothing would add to her doctrine of female empowerment. And, one could only hope that they’d have more style, flair and fit, while benefitting various causes.

    • MeghanNotMarkle says:

      Bingo. The optics are terrible. Your country is hurting financially and mine is burning to the ground, but here I am in ugly $$$ courier. Bad choices. Lots of bad choices. I could defend it if she was choosing classic foundation pieces to build a wardrobe. But so far all she’s worn is trendy stuff that’ll be out next season and won’t come back into vogue again for another 30 years (though I’d be good with never on those comically large buttons). And before the Meghan Apologists jump on me, yes, I say the same for Kate. I like Meghan. I’ve been rooting for her since day one, but she’s disappointing me more and more in her sea of overpriced Blerghy Buttoned Blah.

  18. magnoliarose says:

    At this point, I don’t see anything to complain about. I haven’t loved a lot of what she has chosen but the fact that she is looking for a proper stylist means she knows she needs to improve. If I look at her choices and consider how new she is at this I like that she makes an effort to try new looks. I think her color palette is safe and for someone finding their style, it is better. A big old orange ill fitting buttony monstrosity with a crazy hat would have lived on in the public mind forever.

    I have to admit to feeling vindicated by the mention of discounts. Yeah, I am being a super Petty Patty about it but I told you so. *sticks out tongue*

    • Digital Unicorn says:

      I’m glad she’s looking for a pro stylist and is not going down the office assistant turned stylist route. I don’t mind the colour palette, it suits her and is very summery.

      The RF get a lot of discounts, its just not talked about. If you have a Royal Warrant its pretty much a given that the RF and employee’s will get nice discounts. They get massive discounts on Range Rovers.

    • Addie says:

      The article said she was looking for a PA/dresser not a stylist. Huge difference.

    • jan90067 says:

      A dresser (which she says she’s looking for) is different than a stylist. A dresser keeps track of the outfits, what is worn, with what, and to where it has been worn. A stylist puts the outfits together.

    • magnoliarose says:

      Maybe royal watchers will know but do they ever admit to having a stylist? Or is it always a dresser? I took it to mean a stylist but they didn’t want to call it that because it sounds too extravagant. I don’t really know how they work these things.

      • jan90067 says:

        Diana had a dresser, who took pictures and attached them to index cards that listed what was worn, with what accessories, to what event. Nowadays, I’m sure that TQ’s dresser(s) does/do the same, but on a computer or digitally.

      • Nic919 says:

        Angela Kelly tracks and archives all the outfits. That’s why we don’t see the Queen wear close but not exactly outfits like Kate does because Angela Kelly knows what the Queen has overall.

      • ArtHistorian says:

        Mary of Denmark has a stylist that that’s she’s worked with since her marriage. The stylist herself has become sort of famous by association in the Danish fashion- and tabloid world.

      • Addie says:

        Beatrice contracted a stylist for a short while and reaped a lot of benefit; she really blossomed with that level of professional help. And that relationship was publicised. It seems perfectly feasible to have some professional help for a period of time to put together a working wardrobe that is appropriate and cost-effective, and have an ongoing dresser after that. Better than throwing money away on expensive ill-fitting items that will be worn once.

  19. Deedee says:

    If she wore a nice dress from Topshop then she’d be criticized for that.. “Disrespectful, can’t she dress better when around the queen, doesn’t know good fashion,” etc.

  20. Sage says:

    If she wears them repeatedly then it’s a good bang for your buck.

  21. says:

    Honestly I don’t think there’s an excuse for the price of her wardrobe so far. Or Kate’s for that matter. The UK is not exactly thriving right now and they should all show some more awareness and sensitivity to actual taxpayers who fund their extravagant lives of doing next to nothing. And if I hear that it’s the Duchy of Cornwall that pays for all of this and not the taxpayers one more time my head will explode.

    Also maybe people would complain a bit less if Meghan wore more British designers. But I guess the people who hate her for being biracial will hate and criticise her no matter what she wears so…

  22. Snap Happy says:

    All of the royal women wear expensive clothing – Anne, Kate, Sophie, both Yorks, etc. none of them worked for the money that pays for their wardrobe, why is Meghan being dragged for it? It’s like some people are waiting for her to make “mistakes” so they can jump on her. They aren’t even trying to veil the racist undercurrent that she doesn’t deserve it.

    • Vanessa says:

      I agree with you completely all of sudden all this people and the royal experts are complaining about how much money is being spends but when it was the other royal woman no one complained about it. The other royal were spending just as much and you didn’t see people coming out of the wood works saying what about the tax payer until Meghan came along its like that fact that money actually going to this black woman all this royal experts are like she shouldn’t be wearing couture she spending too much she shouldn’t be wear this or that . It’s like they looking for reasons to drag Meghan and complain about her and now they have reason it’s supposed about her clothes and price tags . When all the other royal woman wear bespoke clothes wear couture and it’s justify because their working royals but now that’s it’s Meghan it’s such a problem everyone is so concerned with Meghan reputation or how it looks to British people but when the other royal woman wears expensive or exclusive clothes it’s no big deal.

      • homeslice says:

        All of a sudden??? lol. Have you ever participated in a Kate thread on here? Her clothing expenditures are outrageous, and she’s been rightfully criticized as well.

      • Maria says:

        No one complained when other royal women wear bespoke clothes. We complain about Kate all the time. I was appalled this past winter at the sheer amount of new maternity navy coats she wore. A new one at every engagement. A navy coat is a navy coat. And she will never wear them again unless she has another pregnancy. There is plenty of complaining about Kate and her dress style.

      • magnoliarose says:

        The problem I have with the complaints is that Meghan is new and learning. But it is also the same complainers from before she was married. They were always going to complain.
        The reason the complaints have racial overtones is lost on them. You can’t expect a new person on a job to be compared to someone who has been on the job for nearly a decade or more. The thought of it is absurd. But minorities are never allowed the same learning curve and that is where the racism enters the picture.
        If she dressed cheaply then she would be criticized harshly and unfairly. She would not be praised for being frugal.

    • MS says:

      At this point, the haters sound like a broken record. Everything Meghan does is breaking protocol or ill-fitted or inappropriate. It’s always something negative. And they hide it under the lie that they are just “concerned.” All of a sudden everyone is a royal accountant and fashion protocol expert since Meghan and Harry got married.

      • homeslice says:

        I like and dislike things about both Duchesses. Their clothing choices are always going to be a hot topic. If Meg goes the way of Kate, she can expect criticism too.

      • Nic919 says:

        This was expected though. Meghan is facing accountability after one month of being married when it took years of Kate being lazy and wasteful before she faced the same level of questioning. No one was adding Kate’s wedding dress or engagement dress to her wardrobe count and it only started to be a press issue after she had Charlotte and was still not doing much of anything work wise 5 years later.

        Nicholl is also wrong about the wedding dress. KP stated what was paid for by the royal family and it does not include the dress. That was paid for privately.

    • Snap Happy says:

      I have read many threads about Kate and the prevailing thought it, “no one would complain if she worked more.” Ok, so Meghan has been working. She did events before she was married. More than Kate did. She was engaged and talked to the crowds. She is working after marriage too. She jumped on a train solo with the Queen without any “easing in period.” So, Meghan is working so why the criticism?

      • Carol says:

        @ Snap Happy — Because the ‘no one would complain if she worked more” phenomenon is fairly new with the arrival of MM.
        Past Duchess threads contained hundreds of the same comments regardless of the content of the article – lazy, doormat, looks haggard, eating disorder, inappropriate speculation about either Ben on her side or Jecca on his, gleeful speculation about mistresses, hair, wiglets, buttons, curls, no job, no ambition, pimped out by Mom…and for the most part people still won’t even refer to her by her legal married name.
        The arrival of MM at least levelled that field a little.

        I happen to like both of them quite a bit and can’t wait until they both attend a full on Tiara event!!

  23. cee says:

    The costs are astronomical, yes. But she’s building her wardrobe and she can’t do that while shopping at Zara and H&M. If she keeps blowing money on couture/bespoke items like Kate does, buying multiple versions of the same item, hardly ever repeating, then we can talk and openly criticize her.

    My one critique, as of now, is the lack of colour. I don’t like colour and I lean into neutrals, but always try to incorporate some colour with my accessories. She’s looking like a blank slate.

    • homeslice says:

      So it’s Zara or Givenchy?? lol. There is a helluva lot in between…

    • Elisa says:

      The thing is that e.g. Queen Letizia of Spain IS wearing Zara regularly and looks more elegant and regal than Meghan. And: Zara is Spanish so Letizia is supporting a local brand. Meghan has so far mostly worn foreign brands. IMO that’s tone-deaf, considering the current economic situation in the UK with Brexit etc.
      Before the marriage she branded herself as woke, humanitarian, different, so there were certain expectations. And it turns out she is simply falling in line with the rest of the lot.

      • Carol says:

        I think it is entirely possible that she is woke, humanitarian and different AND has found herself in an entirely new realm (pun stays) that she had an IDEA of but now the true enormity of living in the firm is real.
        Elegant and regal are not qualities found in clothing, but rather how you wear them and present yourself.

        I am on the team of let’s give this woman a chance to find her footing in a world where we the average have no real concept of how to operate in.

  24. WendyNerd says:

    Question: she got freebies as an actress. Any chance she had to give any of those freebies back?

    But seriously, her royal fashion is really bad.

  25. Nina says:

    I am sorry, yes, it is appalling to wear $10,000 outfits on a weekly basis. She is not a private citizen. My opinion has zero to do with anything racial. My own family is multicultural.
    I understand doing this for important events but when you do it constantly it is not a good look. Yes, I expected the wedding dress to be expensive. A $75,000 engagement gown that looked like it just came from the set of Dynasty? No. That was a dumb move. I am sure a dress or clothing that cost $5,000 could have sufficed. There have been plenty of complaints about Catherine’s clothing. Here is one key difference as well. Catherine will be married to the King of England one day. As far as the other women in the extended family are concerned, I think as public figures, wearing $10,000 outfits once is obscene too.

    • Maria says:

      In Meghan’ s defense the 75kdress was privately purchased so basically her money. It’s exorbitant in my view but hey it’ s hers.
      Meghan is a beautiful, striking woman IMHO she doesn’t need $10,000 to look good.

    • Lizabeth says:

      Well, Kate won’t be married to the King of “England” but I get your point @Nina. I’m not sure that matters though. Engagements with the Queen or tours on behalf of the UK at the request of the Queen are important (or not important depending on one’s POV) no matter who does them. It doesn’t make sense to me to say Kate should wear expensive one-offs including coats now while doing relatively few events because Will will someday be King. Yet everyone else in the family doing lots of royal appearances should wear and re-wear off-the-rack clothes. There’s either “magic” in royal appearances or there’s not.

    • magnoliarose says:

      The problem with the excuse about William’s eventual reign is that he is now second in line. Charles is first so according to that logic Camilla should be dressed off the runway 24 hours a day. By the time William, if ever, makes it there it will be decades away. If the British can even stomach a royal family in 20 years.

      • okay_then says:

        To be fair, Camilla is always decked out in lavish jewellery, which probably costs millions.

      • Digital Unicorn says:

        @okay_then, much of Camilla’s bling comes from the Royal Family vault which has been built up over centuries and means many of the pieces she wears she does not own (this is true of her tiara’s). Chuck has also gifted her several nice pieces over the years (can’t recall them at the moment) and her family is aristocratic so am sure she has a few heirlooms.

        NOTA and LAK are the CB royal bling bling experts so am sure they will know more than I.

      • Wetzi says:

        Camilla and Charles burn tax money left and right. They live extremely expensive. Camilla´s cloths cost way more than they look.

      • okay_then says:

        yeah I was talking about Charles gifts to Camilla, not the loaned jewellery… The high jewellery pieces he buys for Cam cost 6 figures a pop, they can easily add up. But they could be from his personal wealth/funds so idk.

  26. Flying fish says:

    The bottom line is Meghan needs a stylist. If she really is relying on that Mulroney friend of hers she has it all wrong.
    Meghan has great street and/or casual style, she is lacking in the other areas, a stylist would help her bridge that gap.
    I have to agree with a few of the earlier comments though, the cost of the few outfits she has worn, given the ill fit, lack of color, dated look, was poorly thought out given the austerity pressures of today. She shouldn’t need an adviser to tell her that, given her level of intelligence, political and self awareness.
    I am a Meghan fan and I want her to succeed, period.

  27. Honey says:

    I honestly think Meghan’s problems are threefold: (1) she is trying to be trendy and it’s landing wrong. That could have been her style before. I don’t know but I think the trend stuff isn’t playing well for her. Not now; (2) most of her clothes, as the D of S, have been poorly fitted. I don’t know the cause of that but the impact has been “you paid what for that!?!” but I think if her clothes were better fitted some of that wouldn’t have even cropped up to the extent it has despite people looking for things to criticize. For example, Melania Trump’s clothes are often ugly and bordering on WTF but they are never ill-fitting. That makes a difference; and (3) during her pre-wedding whistle-stop tour with Prince Harry, she wore jeans (the Welsh brand that’s all the rage) and carried purses by brands that all have a feel- good humanitarian quality associated with them. That lead to certain expectations and gave people a peek of what they thought her look would be. This aspect of her wardrobe hasn’t materialized in the short time she has been married.

    I think she is still trying to get it together. What else can you conclude? After all, most people want to represent themselves well. Personally, I’d like to see clothing that fit her better and which have a bit more color. She and a stylist (not her friends) should really look up the royal Houses in Spain, Jordan, Sweden and dare I say it . . . The House of Orange-Nassau for guidance. Those women are all modern, professional looking and royal. She should really take a page out of their books. Finally, in terms of cost, it’s going to cost to put all of that in place.

  28. perplexed says:

    Didn’t the guy in the article basically say she SHOULD have an expensive wardrobe? I only saw the excerpts, but they seem to be saying she’s allowed to spend on clothes. Am I missing something? The excerpts didn’t seemed slanted negatively towards her.

  29. Rainbow says:

    Right now she’s like a kid in the candy shop. She went from wearing Aritzia to bespoke Givenchy. The leap is way too high for her to be paying for bespoke pieces out of her own pocket. Why would she anyway, when she’s got access to taxpayers’ money via Charles?

    Most of her clothes since getting married are either too trendy or look dated: big buttons, blah colours, off-shoulder, assymetrical hems, etc. And that tragic Altuzarra striped jumpsuit? Cost $2000. Will she wear that again considering the negative feedback she got? And that de la Renta that cost $6000? Most likely never again. Money down the drain.

    Why are some people so outraged that we’re discussing her expenses? We’ve done it with Kate over the years, but now we can’t do it with Meghan’s expenses? What’s the difference? Meghan is liked here and Kate is not? LOL

    For the record, Kate has been criticized for everything since the beginning. She was never given the excuse that she was “building her wardrobe” because she wasn’t. Her endless lace dresses that were not worn again were proof of that. She’s been a disappointment for the majority of her time as a royal.

    The criticisms for Kate’s clothes and expenses then are the same for Meghan now: the clothes are too trendy and will likely not be worn again, the clothes don’t fit well, she should invest in a seamstress, etc. Kate’s laziness made the criticisms worse, but her work ethic wasn’t just the reason she was regularly bashed for her spending. She was criticized because she was a spendthrift at the taxpayers’ expense. Being lazy was just a bonus and made criticizing her so much easier.

    People need to stop being so sensitive about Meghan. Her work ethic (she has done 3 events since getting married so said work ethic isn’t event established yet) doesn’t mean wearing couture all the time. Doing events with the Queen doesn’t mean she should blow money over couture, either. An event that lasts 2 hours at most, and consists of shaking hands and making small talk should never require bespoke couture. People using the Queen as an excuse for Meghan to spend major $$$$ will be shocked to learn that the actual Queen of Spain wears Zara and Mango on a regular basis and has done well as a Princess with an annual clothing budget that was less than what Meghan has spent in 2 months of being royal.

    Letizia of Spain only had $70,000 for clothing budget PER YEAR for 10 years as Princess, wearing affordable Spanish brands 95% of the time, and she made do. She wore a foreign brand once and she was ripped to shreds by the media so she even had restrictions as to the brands she could wear and support. Yet she managed to pull off countless knock-out appearances over the years. Dressing for less but looking great can be done. Money never equals style.

    • homeslice says:

      Interesting info about Letizia…she is my fav dressed royal!

      • Rainbow says:

        I know! And she didn’t even have a stylist in those 10 years. She only hired one when she became Queen and she had more money allotted for clothing that she was finally able to wear Carolina Herrera and other pricier brands. If she could do it with 1/10 of a budget compared to other royals, there’s no reason why Meghan can’t do the same. Letizia had the smallest clothing budget out of all the future Queens but you couldn’t tell because her clothes always fit well and she mostly wore separate pieces that were recycled later. Her Princess of Asturias Awards dresses are so great.

    • Addie says:

      Amen to all you said. Perfectly stated and the truth.

    • Wowsers says:

      Rainbow you’ve hit the nail on the head.

    • magnoliarose says:

      My only issue with your statement is that the BRF are much higher profile royal family and they ALL spend insane amounts of money on everything. I like Letizia and when she went to the UK she really outshined Kate. It was a stark contrast and a worthy comparison since they are in similar stations. Both mothers and married to King/future King.
      Letizia comes from a different background though and she has been married for nearly 15 years. So I would hope she would be polished and looking great by now but I think her latest look was not good.

      • Rainbow says:

        The BRF being high profile is exactly why they should tone it down, though. Asking for more money from the government for dubious “renovations” and being secretive about their expenses do not generate positive PR. The Spanish royals are the way they are precisely because they are kept in check by the media and the public. The BRF should be leading the way when it comes to making monarchies lighter on the public purse. But the Queen would never do so. She is as tone deaf as they come. It’s just hidden because she has been reigning for more than half a century already and people respect her. That’s why it’s a free for all when it comes to spending for the Windsors. Doesn’t mean it’s right and should be kept that way.

        The Danish monarchy gets a big allowance from the government but even they had been made to make some cuts. The Queen’s grandchildren will not be supported by taxpayers when they grow up, except for the heir.

        All royal families are a drain on the taxpayers. Even in Norway, the Crown Princess is so lazy, lazier than Kate, yet spends a ton of money on Valentino and Pucci dresses and gets rightfully criticized for it. High profile or not, royal families and their expenses should be scrutinized.

        Letizia was a journalist and her earlier style as a royal reflected it. But she adapted. She was criticized a lot in the beginning for only wearing suits and always looking “too made up”, “too royal”, and out of touch. So she changed her style and opted for simpler, affordable clothes (also due to the Spanish royals’ salary being frozen for several years by the government as part of austerity measures). She has had many hits and and lots misses but when she hits it, nobody can compare. As I said, dressing well for less can be done. Finding your style doesn’t have to mean running for the couture houses right away.

      • Addie says:

        @Rainbow – again, perfectly said. The lack of transparency of the BRF permitted by successive governments is a significant problem and needs to be addressed. I suspect the public would turn on them as one if the true state of royal spending was known. I get the impression they are feathering their nests while they can. They are a drain and need to be heavily trimmed to State engagements by the monarch and heir. The charity work is padding to give them visibility and relevance but it can be done in their on time and on their own dime if they are that keen.

    • DizzyLizzy says:

      This is a GREAT comment. Hadn’t thought of it that way. One of the reasons I love this board.I agree that as the less restricted RF wife, Meghan could set an example by wearing more accessible fashion and more British fashion.

      They could also maybe change the rules so that Meghan/ Kate are allowed to accept free pieces up to the value of say £250. That way they would strongly consider wearing more affordable and hughstreet brands.

      Letizia is pretty hit and miss (I’d say 25% hit), but if Meghan were to channel her hits with more affordable clothes (i.e. her previous price range) it would set an amazing example and advertise our hughstreet across the world. Something we will need post Brexit.

      • Rainbow says:

        I still miss her pastel skirt suits from 2004-2005, though. And the perfectly coiffed hairstyles. Sigh. Those were so elegant and pretty. Too bad the media said it made her look pretentious and cold and like her mother in-law.

        But Letizia was smart and listened to media and public sentiment. They can make up lots of gossip about her, but one thing they can’t accuse her of is being a spendthrift. There were times when she’s looked like she dressed in the dark and there are times when she looks like she’s going to the market than an official event. But lwhen she pulls out all the stops…La Reina de Espana is in a league of her own.

        That’s what I’d like to see from Kate and Meghan. I don’t expect them to dress like they hunted the bargain bin, but there’s a lot of area in between cheap clothes and bespoke, top-tier couture.

    • ladida says:

      I found your comment very articulate. I personally remember criticizing Kate even before the marriage for what seemed like constant shopping and exorbitant spending to me, though it pales in comparison to Meghan. For those who claim Kate spent just as much, she certainly did but she mixed in a lot of high street. Her first two events with the queen were not designer. The only issue I take with Mango and Zara is that, while it hasn’t stopped Kate or Letizia, some of these brands have shady reputations for how they treat factory workers abroad. In many ways, it’s somewhat risky for high profile individuals to wear such mass market brands.

      • DizzyLizzy says:

        Good point. Pre Harry, Meghan was known for her love of ethical brands, hence why I expected Stella McCartney to be her go to, especially as she is huge pals with Amal. I think she really needs to speak to Stella to do her couture stuff and use proper fabrics.

        @Rainbow I am still surprised by Letitia’s budget. That figure seems awfully low as she does actually wear A LOT of designer like Caroline Herrera. I think that might be her official budget and then maybe the rules are different for Spanish Royals so she gets a ton of freebies.

    • Rainbow says:

      DizzyLizzy – Letizia didn’t wear Carolina Herrera until she became Queen in 2014. That was the time she started expanding her wardrobe to include pricier items as her budget also increased. She finally got to wear a pair of Prada shoes in 2016, 12 years after becoming royal.

      But from 2004-2013 most of her clothes were cheap. Her State events clothing were mostly from Varela who knew how to dress her but also designed really repetitive stuff.

      The budget of $70K was when she was still Princess of Asturias for 10 years. There was a report published as part of royal house transparency that Letizia, unlike other future Queens, did not receive her own allowance. Rather, her money came from a lump sum given to Felipe wherein everything in their household was to be taken from that budget. The amount was about $400K a year, covering expenses from Letizia’s wardrobe to Felipe’s clothes, to their daughters’ clothes as well as school tuition fees, and even the salary for their staff must come from that $400K.

      To put that into perspective, Maxima of the Netherlands used to have $300K for her yearly allowance for her own use only. That was when she was still a Princess. When she became Queen that amount even doubled. As I said, these royals are kept in a lap of luxury so a bit of criticism doesn’t even touch them. Haakon and Mette-Marit of Norway made news before for asking the government for more money, which was funny since neither of them work hard or do anything significant, and Mette-Marit makes Kate look like hard worker as she is even lazier than Kate.

      Meghan is not alone in the criticisms when it comes to clothing and expenses. But like Letizia, I hope Meghan will develop a balance between affordable clothing and high fashion. Save the show-stoppers for State Visits and other big events. It can be done without being tone deaf.

      • RoyalBree says:

        I agree with most of these posts. I really want to like Meghan but so far all she has done is hit the ground … spending. What happened to her ethical stance? Her humanitarianism? The optics of her extravagant clothing spending, even this early on, are very bad right now. Yet surprisingly, most of her couture clothes have been ill-fitting. And as many have said, it doesn’t take a $10,000 outfit to be stylish. Do people remember a couple of years ago when she used to do ads for Reitmans, a low-end Canadian clothing chain? Have you seen those ads? Have a Google! She made their cheap but nice clothes look awesome! I’d love to see her wearing some Reitmans. Imagine the press if she wore Reitmans! She’d have so many people talking, but in a good way.

  30. MrsK says:

    No, she does not. I think all the young royals should go off-label for their working day clothes, and stick with tailor-made and perfectly-fitted ensembles that ensure their clothes are not the main headline.

    Having said that, I can totally understand why someone would get giddy when she first gets access to true couture. But I hope she reseizes the focus from the clothes that too often look like they are wearing her, instead of the other way round.

  31. Sv says:

    I don’t have a problem with people criticizing the cost of Meghan’s clothes if it is done honestly. Most of the recent media attention to the cost of her wardrobe has not been honest. It’s been click bait with inflated prices for the clothes she’s worn. I see comments here where people are still acting like see actually paid $75K for the engagement dress. People are attacking like Kate still reguarly wears high Street to engagements with the Queen. Meghan enters immediately as a full working Royal with a decade of public work behind her where she reguarly wore expensive clothes. Meghan is entering the Royal family where Kate is now, not the Kate that joined the Royals years ago having never held a full-time job before.

    • Vanessa says:

      i don’t believe that Meghan has spent as much money as being reported by some of this experts i don’t remember if the added Kate wedding dress as part of her first year as a working royal. So I don’t why their adding Meghan wedding dress as part of working royal wardrobe those three or four events has nothing to do with her wedding dress . and I honestly don’t remember anyone complaining about the amount of money Kate spend on her wardrobe in the first month It’s not intill seven years and Kate last baby that people really started to complain about how much she spending and it’s still being excused as she will be queen one day so it’s ok for her to have expensive clothes

    • Addie says:

      Meghan doesn’t have a decade of public work behind her. She’s done literally a handful of appearances since 2014-2017 : 2 x appearances at the One Young World conferences and the UN speech, organised by her PR company, plus the visit to Rwanda and India. All were one-offs. Meghan looked nicely dressed pre-marriage and had the benefit of clothing loans from the Suits wardrobe and that of others. No shame in that and it seems to be the done thing. Meghan is bearing the brunt of criticism because Kate spent so much money and no-one wants to see a repeat of that level of profligacy. So when the engagement dress came along, people went ballistic because it was a “Oh no, here we go again” moment. It wasn’t helped by some expensive choices from the wedding onward. Wear the expensive stuff for high profile occasions; for everything else, modest and appropriate is fine. that goes for all royal women, not just Meghan.

  32. ladida says:

    I’m of two minds on this. It really bothered me when people criticized Hillary’s Armani during the campaign, it reminded me that women are constantly policed for what they wear, their bodies etc. etc. And certainly, royals are not priests or nuns, they don’t take a vow of poverty. On the other hand, I do find it ostentatious to spend so much money on clothing when most of the world is struggling to make ends meet. It sends the wrong message. There are occasions where royals must look the part, but for day-to-day events I think they can scale it back.

    • homeslice says:

      Yes, women will always be criticized no mater what. But Hill earned her money and paid for her Armani…
      Also, to the matter of ‘work”…neither Kate or Meg will ever do enough to earn the right to have such expensive clothing. They are simply lucky women who married rich princes.

    • Moonpie says:

      Criticising Kate’s and Meghan’s choice of clothes for public events is hardly “policing” because they are basically doing work they get paid for. The have professional stylists and adivisors and they are very expensive in the upkeep. They should deliver something for all that money that is lavished on them.
      Criticising Kate’s and Meghan’s thin bodies which got thin right before marrying into the Royal Family is hardly “policing” as everything the Royal Family does publicly is political. And apparently the highly political Royal Family who you would expect to stand up to wrong developments in society like anorexia doesn’t deliver because their two main female protagonists seem to have entered a contest for the thinnest thin body.
      Now what does that tell you about the Royal Family and their idea how to serve this country?

  33. bonobochick says:

    Hmmm. Lots of pearl clutching for like 5 events, most with Her Majesty, of outfits in less than 2 months.

    i am with Kaiser in that this reeks of tones / undertones of racism and wanting to police a Black woman’s body.

    This is a discussion being had ridiculously early for *reasons*… IMO it would make more sense to have this discussion in 6 months or a year when the newness has worn off & a CV of events attended has a bigger pool of events held to draw from but I guess some folks can’t wait to criticize, concern troll, or try their hand at sealioning all things Duchess Meghan.

  34. RoseMary says:

    I’m of a different opinion. I think she should wear exclusively bespoke. Diana did. Why shouldn’t Meg? Charles is paying for it. I may be looking too far ahead, but what happens when Charles dies? How much money do you think William will want Harry to have?

    • homeslice says:

      Diana was Princess of Wales, married to the heir. A better comparison for Meg would be Fergie…

    • MrsBump says:

      Because this is 2018, and the British economy isnt doing too well? The NHS is underfunded , people are living under austerity measures and noone knows what the impact of brexit will be, so spending millions of pounds outfitting the wives of William and Harry is pretty outrageous.

      • formerly known as Amy says:

        NHS funding has nothing to do with the duchy and has everything to do with the tories in power. If the govt wanted to fund the NHS they could, so take your case to the government not a royal blog. Remember constitutional monarchy.

      • MrsBump says:

        The monarchy exists as long as the public wants it to. The Marie Antoinette attitude to spending will not end well.

      • Moonpie says:

        The income from the Duchy of Cornwall belongs to the taxpayer because the duchy belongs to the taxpayer.
        It is just the case that the taxpayer graciously allows Prince charles to draw an income from the duchy. And that is how Charles finances his sons and their wives expensive outfits.
        So yes, every expensive outfit which Kate or Meghan do wear is financed by the taxpayer via the duchy.

        And it isn#t just the outfits. The Queen gets around Pounds 40 Mio a year and security cost is additional but not published.

      • Elaine says:

        @Formerly known as Amy. How familiar are you with the UK? Specifically what are called ‘The Crown Estates’? The Crown estates fund the Government, which then funds public services. They are not now *nor have they ever been* owned by the Queen.

        The Crown estates were created to pay for govt which in ye old times was defined as parliament, judiciary, army and the royal household and has now come to be defined as those things PLUS public services such as the NHS, police, emergency services.

        The Queen is given a cut of the Crown Estates to run the Monarchy. A year or two ago she was given an increase from 15% a year to something like 25% a year to fund the repair of Buckingham Palace.

        This means that money which would have gone to the Government (and thus to the people who pay for it) now goes to the Royal family.

        So that 10% means:
        10% less for the army
        10% less from the Police (fingers-crossed you won’t get stabbed in crime ridden London!)
        10% less for Parliament

        …wait for it cause you know you want to…

        10% LESS for the NHS.

      • ArtHistorian says:

        And it is the Queen’s fault that Buckingham Palace is in such a bad shape because it appears that there haven’t a continual upkeep and no one knows where the money earmarked for Buck Palace in her annual cut has gone.

      • formerly known as Amy says:

        I still don’t get what any of this has to do with what MM is wearing. If the public wants to get rid of the monarchy they can but that is still not a guarantee that the NHS will be funded.
        Also the monarch was the govt in “ye old time” as you put it.
        The monarch is given a percentage of the money from the crown estate coz that’s the deal that George III made with parliament. It’s not a freebie, it’s a contract.

      • says:

        It has everything to do with what they all wear because it’s bought with money that can be used for the good of the public. And it adds up pretty quickly. None of them should be entitled to such expensive clothes to do, well, not much at all. She doesn’t have to wear Prada to look beautiful and appropriate. There are many interesting British owned (designer) brands she can work with. Since people seem to care more about what she wears than anything else, she can use it to make a statement instead of whatever it is she’s doing now.

      • formerly known as Amy says:

        If the govt wants to fund “the good of the public” they can, that doesn’t depend on what MM or any other member of the RF wears. It’s got a lot more to do with govt and who is in power.
        I hate your type of thinking because it absolves politicians of the responsibility and that energy is wasted on the RF instead of actually trying to bring change.
        If the duchy does belong to the taxpayer, when in history has the money from the duchy ever been used for the taxpayer?
        The duchy has always existed as a source of funding for the PoW, a court of law would have to depart from precedence to show that the duchy belongs to the govt.

    • spidee!!! says:

      Charles may make sure that Harry is looked after in his Will

    • Aurelia says:

      Im old enough to remember when Di got dragged over the coals. She then started atlering existing pieces to get another wear out of them.

      • ArtHistorian says:

        Qeen Margrethe of Denmark has her clothes altered quite a bit – and has done so for decades. But she recycles a lot anyway – there’s a chartreuse green gown that she has worn repeatedly for almost a decade so I think that she mostly has her clothes altered for the creative aspects since she’s always worked closely with her designers. Then again, she is artistic and has costume design as a hobby.

  35. Elisa says:

    IMO the only good look out of these is the white dress she wore for the evening reception. It’s the ultimately irony that it’s a Stella McCarthy.
    All the other outfits are ill-fitted and look cheap, despite being expensive.
    And yes, Kate did/does the same and was called out for it, so I don’t get why Meghan should be treated differently? This is a gossip site and I am here for gossiping.

    • Lizabeth says:

      But was Kate called out for her spending when she’d been married for about 6 weeks @Elisa? I don’t recall that she was but I also don’t recall she made many royal appearances during that time period either.

      Kate’s relatively less expensive dress/suit for her first solo event with the Queen was criticized for being too tight and too short (too short esp when sitting) and she was criticized early on for repeated skirt flashings and near flashings when bending down to take flowers from children. But I think the criticisms of her spending came later…maybe about the time of the two kitchens at KP and Amner Hall but certainly not within the first 6 weeks of marriage.

      • Rainbow says:

        Kate was not criticized for her spending early on because she didn’t wear bespoke pieces. The clothes she wore to Canada in July 2011 were criticized for not fitting well and because she was so thin. Most of her clothes were off-the-rack, out of season pieces that she altered without professional help. She was criticized a lot for spending money on outfits that looked like costumes to match the event she was attending.

        There was a lot to criticize in between: her disinterest, her hair extensions, her empty-headed comments, her facial expressions, her not knowing when to curtsy to the Queen, her family’s thirst for fame, her eating habits/thinness, etc. Kate was criticized plenty before her laziness and spending became a big issue.

        She only started getting heavily criticized for her spending when the report came out that she spent £125K for clothes for the first 6 months of 2012…and that was the time she started wearing bespoke pieces as she went on an international royal tour and Jenny Packham was her go-to. She was criticized both for the cost and the designs. She didn’t wear McQueen exclusively until the Queen’s Jubilee celebrations.

      • magnoliarose says:

        Not in the first month to 6 weeks. That is the issue.

      • Moonpie says:

        Kate was called out before and during and immediately after the marriage.
        Before they called her Waity Katie and criticised her for being without career ambitions and even without moderate interests into anything like art or a career and for being William’s doormat.
        During the wedding preparations there were lots of critical voices who had issues about Kate’s workshyness and her lack of interest in everything and her sudden bony anorexic frame.
        After the wedding people still had issues with her lack of work ethics and lack of interest and lack of money ethics and lack of style. Her lack of public speaking skills and her lack of soft skills are still criticised heavily.

      • Lizabeth says:

        But @Moonpie I don’t think Kate was criticized for her spending on clothes within 45 days of her wedding. That’s what the original comment from @Elisa was about–that Kate was “called out” for her clothes spending so Meghan should be too. I agree Kate was criticized for the things you point out– especially her lack of work or charity experience. And as time has gone on those criticisms have appeared more valid. But it’s not as though the only criticism of Meghan has been over her clothes! And if she does what Kate has done—-so very few re-wears— I’ll criticize her too. (Kate wore lots of expensive bespoke or semi-bespoke outfits on the India tour over 2 yrs ago. I think the only repeat we’ve seen is the jeggings and boots worn to the monastery) At any rate 45 days seems an awfully short “honeymoon.”

  36. Moonpie says:

    The rules ARE different for Meghan. She married the 2nd brother who won’t inherit the throne. there is such a thing a hierarchy and Kate outranks Meghan. And that means as soon as Meghan threatens Kate’s standing she will be put down by everybody else in that royal “system” including the “grey men”.

  37. Tara Beth says:

    Answer: Yes.
    Now the she is part of the royal family, she needs to dress in expensive clothing.
    Another question on the minds of such philosophers: “Do I really need to get my hair cut to go to a job interview.”

  38. Gem23 says:

    I disagree with most of these comments because I agree with business analysts that Duchess Meghan’s style is a goldmine for the fashion and homestyle industries. I have no doubt that her “brand” is worth hundreds of millions to the UK economy. Now I do think the government’s guidelines about the royals being barred from loans of clothes from the fashion houses is ridiculous, especially given the Duchesses contacts in the industry and the public’s concern about costs. She should be allowed to navigate the business part of this as she always has.
    As for couture versus not, I trust Meghan’s instincts and she has always mixed high and low fashion. Fun for her, fun for me as a fan.
    Just believe the government should let her show them how she can negotiate with the designers.

  39. BegoneOrangeCheeto says:

    Look, I am a huge fan of Meghan. I think she’s a genuinely good person and great for the BRF. That being said, 18,000 dollars for a DRESS? That’s ridiculous. And, yes, if Kate did the same thing I would be equally as outraged.

    I know Meg is new to all this so I’m willing to cut her some slack. But she and Kate BOTH have to watch it with the optics. 18K for a dress that, to be honest, wasn’t all that great – is absurd.

    If she was closer in line to the throne, I might understand it a bit better. But, still. (And, again, Kate also had some MASSIVE issues with spending.)

  40. Bebe says:

    My sisters are twins. One is Meghan’s size, the other Kate’s. Obvi they aren’t identical. Anyway, short Meghan-like sister cannot wear anything cheap without looking cheap to save her life. Tall Kate-like sister is the opposite. I blame it on height and cheap clothes being made, well, cheaply.

  41. Brittany says:

    I love me some Meghan but the optics—they aren’t great. Not at all. I also don’t buy that all of the criticism is race related. I’m American but I follow a lot of pages over in the Europe and the UK. The criticism is because they aren’t doing so well over there, the NHS is in trouble, and she’s spending 10K on a few outfits. Again, it’s the optics. And this site is NOTORIOUS for going after Kate and her wardrobe (with good reason!) so this isn’t any different that we are criticizing Meghan. All that money and she has ill-fitting clothing and it’s way too trendy. I doubt she will recycle these outfits. Again, I love Meghan, I woke up at 3am to watch the damn wedding. But I’ve been underwhelmed with what she has been wearing and I’m wondering what kind of advice she is receiving to spend that kind of money so early on. She needs a stylist who can find her some nice classic clothing that isn’t going to cause people to have heart attacks when they see the price.

  42. Katebush says:

    I agree I’ve been underwhelmed and dissapointed in her style and the cost of all these bespoke items also. I think we thought she’d push the boundaries fashion wise, be a breath of fresh air and provide a sleek contrast to poor old Kate and her doily dresses.
    Many thought she would champion lesser known, more edgy British designers or show a more streamlined modern business style. Not so far… the last three or four blush pink monstrosities have made people rethink their Megan narratives.
    I do like her and her engaged friendly personality but hope she curtails her fashion spending and focuses on championing some lesser known British brands and designers.

  43. Nina says:

    It kind of reminds me of Eliza Doolittle. She seemed to be fine dressing herself before this and now someone (Harry) or someone else is advising her to wear ultra conservative clothing that costs a fortune. I think she could probably mix in more items from mid priced brands but now after thinking about this, I am wondering who is helping her make these choices that are very expensive. Maybe she should just mix in some less expensive pieces. I wrote a post earlier in which I was pretty critical. I still think the engagement dress was a poor choice for optics and because it was pretty over the top, but if she bought it herself, that is clearly her discretion to do what she wants with her money. I am shocked at how ill fitting some of her clothing has been. Saying that, I think the Givenchy dress she wore on the train was actually very nice looking because it was modern and clean. I did not like that white shirtdress she wore to Ascot. I think it just a matter of her finding her way regarding clothing in this role. I still think anyone besides the Queen should probably be mindful of their clothing budget. Just my opinion.

  44. okay_then says:

    Kate doesn’t wear couture for everyone who keeps comparing the two.

    • Lizabeth says:

      Huh? When Kate wears a design–whether it’s by McQueen, Walker, Wickstead, Chanel, Erdem, Packham– and that exact design is not made available as a regular offering for purchase by anyone else, isn’t that couture? It may not always be “pure couture” in the sense that some (hardly all) of Kate’s outfits begin with an upper-end design available to others and then change it with different sleeves, a different neckline, different waistline, longer hemline, or other elements altered (ruffles, pockets, lapels, cuffs changed) Those aren’t simple “at home” alterations and IF Kate was charged for the changes by the designer they would likely significantly increase the cost of the already pretty pricey outfit. May not make a 4K outfit cost 10K but I’m not so sure the true costs of MM’s bespoke outfits have been reported accurately either.

      • okay_then says:

        The designers you mentioned were all bespoke or made to measure (designs already available to buy but altered to your tastes) clothing, not couture. Are her bespoke pieces expensive? Of course, and they probably run into the thousands too… but they aren’t couture prices which start at a higher price point. Meghan’s go-to Givenchy is an official couture designer, Kate has never worn a couture design from one of the couture houses. The Chanel outfit from last year was a pre-existing design from the Spring line and it was altered for her. Hopefully, that explains it well. There’s a difference between bespoke and couture.

      • okay_then says:

        All of that being said though.. the Ralph and Russo PR blunder was a huge misstep. They are a British couture house and they make gorgeous elegant outfits. If Meghan wanted to go couture on the big occasions, they would have been perfect.

      • Lizabeth says:

        You and I have different definitions of the word couture then @Okay_then. Mine is what appears in the Oxford Dictionary and fits much of Kate’s wardrobe IMO. The Chanel design was so altered it didn’t even appear to be the same dress! And yet Meghan’s Givenchy cape dress, a design that others have previously worn in a different length and a different fabric is couture but Kate’s Chanel was merely bespoke?

        “The design and manufacture of fashionable clothes to a client’s specific requirements and measurements.”

      • okay_then says:

        The Chanel wasn’t a bespoke commision. Honestly, they look fairly similar, the extra fabric was removed and it was fitted around the waist.

        Everyone can commission bespoke pieces with different designers, but for your outfits to be couture, they have to be designed by one of the couture houses. Take Sheikha Mozah as an example, I think she exclusively wears couture. My definition is the French definition of couture. I know many designers use the word couture and they make beautiful pieces with quality fabrics/intricate designs but they aren’t really classed as true couture. Givenchy and Ralph&Russo are.

    • Brandy Alexander says:

      @Lizabeth, I looked this up when I was reading Crazy Rich Asians, and as best I can tell, couture is strictly hand made, but bespoke is not.

    • OneLumpOrTwo says:

      This is very interesting. I never looked up the definition for each, but for some reason I always thought that bespoke was just the English word for couture. I didn’t understood why one word was used instead of the other, but never bothered to look it up. Now it makes sense, thank you for sharing!

  45. geneva says:

    I am amazed at how many public events the new Duchess has been involved in..but I have to say that being older I was turned off by the recent pictures of her rooting on her man at a polo match. I feel like that is the go-to British photo opp..and has been for every new woman in the life of the men of the royal family. As a woman the same age as Fergie (and a red head too) I remember Diana’s first shots at a polo match rooting on her man, then Fergie, and on and on.

    It all seems like Markle really does work for the firm now and the courtiers are in the back ground saying “put her here next” and “place her there after”…meanwhile someone like Angelina Jolie then dons some gloves, a suit and a fascinator and waves and she is like royalty too. It has a Stepford-wives quality to it that makes me uneasy.