If you found yourself in an emergency fashion situation, do you have TEN royal-appropriate outfits of various “dressiness” in your closet? I do not. I barely have three outfits in my closet which would be appropriate for “a royal church visit” or “tea with the Queen” and I definitely don’t have anything for dinner with the Queen. But Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi found himself in a similar situation, and he apparently had enough ensembles in his closet for a two-day visit with the Queen over Christmas. Why didn’t he have time to shop for new clothes though? Because the Queen only allowed him to come to Sandringham at the last minute, because she changed her weird “no fiances, only spouses” rule. From the Daily Mail’s Talk of the Town column:
Princess Beatrice’s fiance Edo Mapelli Mozzi had just hours to prepare for his first Royal Christmas at Sandringham, I can reveal. It seems the Queen decided to break her rule – that only married couples and members of the Royal Family can attend the three-day festivities – at the very last minute. Her change of heart meant Edo faced a frantic time trying to prepare his wardrobe – no mean feat given that there are up to five outfit changes a day at the Norfolk estate.
Sandringham may be known as the least grand Royal palace but Christmas there is still carried out with military precision. Guests arrived on Christmas Eve in reverse order to their seniority within the family. As such, Bea and Edo, and Princess Eugenie and her husband Jack Brooksbank, would have been among the first people to arrive.
After a light tea, the Royals exchanged gifts at 6pm sharp. And in the evening, they sat down to a black-tie dinner. Christmas Day started with a service at St Mary Magdalene Church, before the party returned for drinks and then lunch. Edo would not even have had the chance to slip on an old jumper on Boxing Day because he would have needed his best tweed for the traditional shoot.
A source said: ‘Put it this way, if Edo were a woman there simply wouldn’t have been time to get a selection of different dresses, hats and coats together. He’s lucky it’s slightly easier to pack a variety of suits than it is to find as many as ten dresses. Still not that many men have more than ten different clean shirts hanging in the wardrobe, let alone that many different suits and a black- tie to hand at short notice.’
Guests are not expected to repeat an outfit during the break and some have been known to purchase new sets of underwear because suitcases are unpacked by maids – so no tatty socks or boxer shorts for Edo.
The only person to have previously attended Sandringham before marrying into The Firm was Meghan Markle, who accompanied Prince Harry in 2017. Even Kate Middleton wasn’t allowed to attend with Prince William before they married. When she did go for the first time, she reportedly buckled under the pressure over what to pack.
It is thought that property developer Edo got the call at the last minute because the Queen wanted to lend her support to her granddaughter Bea, who has faced significant strain in recent weeks. There has been constant wrangling over her wedding arrangements, including the date and venue. Sources say her patience has been tested to its limits and it’s only thanks to her fiance that she has been able to plough on. Luckily for Edo, he was able to accept the Queen’s invitation as his ex-fiancee, Dara Huang, took their three-year-old son Wolfie to Florida to spend time with her family.
So… Dara and Wolfie were already going to Florida, and Edo only found out last minute about being allowed to come to Sandringham, so… what were his original Christmas plans? Fly to Italy to be with his parents and not see his son at all? I have no idea. But yeah, I’m not surprised that Edo had enough suits and clean shirts for the visit. He seems like he’s somewhat comfortable in this royal world. Also, regarding Kate not being allowed to come to Sandringham when she and William were just engaged… I always thought that the Queen probably would have allowed it if William asked or pressed the issue, but that Kate actually wanted to spend one last Christmas with the Middletons at their family home.
Photos courtesy of Getty.