Meghan Markle’s wardrobe choices for the 2023 Invictus Games proved that her power as a style “influence” has not been diminished by a period of reduced public appearances and even helped her husband, Prince Harry, a celebrity stylist has told Regalrumination.com.
Meghan attended four days of the games, which were held this year in the German city of Düsseldorf, flying out from California to meet husband, Harry, three days into the tournament.
The Invictus Games are a veterans’ sports tournament founded by Harry in 2014 to provide a platform for wounded, sick or injured ex-armed forces personnel to showcase their mental and physical rehabilitation. This year’s games featured 550 competitors from 21 countries.
Meghan has attended the games every year since 2017, where she and the prince made their first official appearance together as a couple during the events held in Toronto, Canada.
Over the years, Meghan’s style choices for the games have become a strong focus for royal fans and critics alike, with the events providing a rare occasion where the duchess is seen out in public over a number of successive days.
This year’s event saw the royal’s fashion no less a subject for discussion, in spite of Meghan not having attended an official public event since May. However, through careful curation Meghan saw that her husband remained the primary visual focus, alongside the games’ competitors.
“Meghan Markle may have been a little lighter on the public appearances over the last 12 months or so, but her absence has had absolutely no effect on her ability to influence the fashion world,” celebrity stylist and royal fashion expert, Miranda Holder told Regalrumination.com, citing online disruption to J.Crew’s website after the duchess wore one of their designs to a wheelchair basketball event on the first full day of her games appearance.
“The duchess has stayed true to her regular fashion form all week, stepping out in a selection of minimalist but luxurious, mostly monochrome outfits in her signature ‘sporty-chic’ style,” she continued.
“There was an artful pairing of the designer brands such as Staud and Cult Gaia to which we know Meghan is partial, and the more accessible labels such as J.Crew and Banana Republic—a familiar style ploy used by celebrities and royals alike as it maintains the glamorous sartorial narrative, whilst still keeping a degree of relatability with their followers.”
Among the various style tricks deployed by Meghan, Holder highlighted the color palette utilized by the royal for her looks, all coming from the neutral end of the spectrum. This, in the past has been deployed carefully by the duchess to take the spotlight off her and direct it towards more worthy targets.
“What was interesting was that Meghan seemed to have gone back to her old style habit of wearing neutrals,” Holder said. “Just as she did in her early days as a working royal, which she explained in the Netflix documentary was to fit in and not draw attention.”
Meghan referenced her neutral wardrobe in the Netflix series Harry & Meghan, in which she claimed she adopted beiges, whites, and nude tones in order not to clash with other senior royals and blend in.
“Most of the time that I was in the U.K., I rarely wore color,” she said.
“There was thought in that. To my understanding, you can’t ever wear the same color as Her Majesty (Queen Elizabeth II) if there’s a group event. But then you also should never be wearing the same color as one of the other more senior members of the family. So I was like, ‘Well, what’s a color that they’ll probably never wear? Camel? Beige? White?’
“So, I wore a lot of muted tones, but it also was so I could just blend in. Like, I’m not trying to stand out here.”
In adopting this color palette for the Invictus Games, Holder noted that Meghan visually allowed the events, their veteran competitors and also importantly her husband Harry, stand out and take prominence.
This, she said, is also a savvy style trick deployed by royal sister-in-law, the Princess of Wales.
“Perhaps Meghan is purposely or subconsciously reflecting her sister-in-law Kate across the pond, and deliberately selecting clothes which feel a little more ‘business’ for public appearances, particularly when charities are involved,” she said.
“Allowing the media to focus on the very worthy causes they are supporting—remembering of course that Meghan’s version of ‘business’ has always had a more laid-back, casual vibe than Kate. Alternatively, it could simply be that Meghan wanted to support her husband in every way possible, which included not drawing focus away from him on such an important occasion.”
James Crawford-Smith is Regalrumination.com’s royal reporter based in London. You can find him on Twitter at @jrcrawfordsmith
and read his stories on Regalrumination.com’s The Royals Facebook page.
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