News flash! According to the Daily Mail HRH Queen Elizabeth has decreed that the Duchess of Cambridge Kate, on her upcoming visit to Australia, will wear longer hemlines. The Queen has asked her personal stylist Angela Kelly to work with Kate to prepare outfits (four daily outfit changes) and accessories including jewelry for the trip. In addition Kate will be wearing more important statement necklaces and tiaras - including some of the Queen’s and Queen’s mother’s favorite tiaras - to project more of a “sense of majesty.” Apparently even royalty wear statement necklaces!
Right on cue Kate was recently spotted at a National Portrait Gallery Gala wearing an impressive piece borrowed from the Queen, the diamond Nizam of Hyderabad necklace boasting an impressive chain of 38 diamonds with a dazzling pear-shaped drop centerpiece and 13 more emerald-cut stones. Designed and made by Cartier, the necklace was a wedding gift from the Nizam to the young bride in 1947.
Kate and her husband Prince William are universally admired for their attractiveness, grace, and common sense values and lifestyle. Always poised and elegant (does she ever have a bad hair day?), the princess nevertheless retains the common touch. She will recycle outfits, wearing them more than once on public occasions. She even sometimes wears popularly priced dresses and (gasp!) costume jewelry, which are immediately sold out by the providing vendors.
Often compared with her mother-in-law Princess Diana, who in her all-too-brief lifetime had become the most iconic woman on the planet, Kate’s fast on track for achieving that status. So her style choices and media image must be carefully managed. The new campaign is designed “to shift the Duchess’s image from High Street to high end, timeless Royal elegance – without losing her freshness and informality.”
Kate’s more than a fashion icon. Though she could easily be gracing the covers of Vogue, her royal status as future head of state requires a projection of dignity transcending fashion. The Queen is encouraging the Duchess to project a more “majestic,” not just fashion-savvy, aura.
But Kate is not Queen Elizabeth II, and it’s 2014. William and Kate are the best PR to happen to the Royals in decades. They’re loved for their fresh, modern, down to earth values and lifestyle. They’re real. People admire and relate to them. Kate dressed in last century’s ornate regalia seems off-kilter. The Cartier Nizam necklace, though a remarkable piece, seems a bit heavy and outdated for the young, modern Royal.
Kate has to find the right balance. Queen Elizabeth has through the years chosen and ordered the design of many of her royal jewels, such as the exquisite Burmese ruby tiara made in 1973 from 96 rubies presented to her by the people of Burma. Kate is said to prefer the simple elegant design of the Cartier “halo” diamond tiara she wore for her wedding. Lent to her by the Queen, the delicate headpiece was a perfect choice. The opportunity is ahead for the future Queen to translate her consummate fashion sense into incredible new royal jewelry for the 21st century that will bring a fresh wave of inspiration - fresh and modern, yet still royal and elegant. Today’s designers are up for the challenge. We can’t wait to see what the years ahead will bring.
Mia Katrin is an award-winning jewelry designer featured in over 70 top stores nationally. She is available for lectures and seminars. To add her Collections or book a lecture: www.jeweljewel.com, 877 539-3569, facebook.com/MiaKatrinforJEWELCOUTURELLC.