Should the DoC Be Wearing D&G?

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On Tuesday the Duchess of Cambridge carried out a solo engagement at Evelina London Children’s Hospital, a pretty straightforward outing if ever there was one. She was there to participate in an arts and craft session with children in her capacity as both the hospital’s patron and the National Portrait Gallery’s, which runs creative workshops for young patients throughout London.

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If there are three facets of life that Kate likes to promote for young people it’s athletics, time spent outdoors, and art, so this engagement was right up her alley. She happily joined the children at their crafts tables, and received a handmade wreath by two young siblings who had worked on the piece for Princess Charlotte. Kate promised that she would hang it up in her daughter’s bedroom.

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For the day Kate recycled yet another look she debuted in 2019, this time a black and white tweed skirt suit by Dolce & Gabbana. This was a hit when she wore it last year, and in fact I gave it a shout out when I did her 2019 recap earlier this month. As such, I cannot take credit for the question I’ve posed in the title, but I did see courtesy of Elizabeth Holmes that it’s apparently not wholly kosher for a member of the British Royal Family to be out and about in D&G these days.

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I think it won’t come as any surprise to all of you that I don’t make a big effort to stay on top of the latest fashion industry news 😉 As such, I have absolutely no memory of D&G autumn 2018 scandal, but I spent the other evening catching up. Essentially, there was an issue over an ad the brand ran in China, and with comments made by Stefano Gabbana on Instagram that were appallingly racist against China and its people. Gabbana, for his part, claims that his account was hacked.

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At the time, a major show was cancelled, fashion industry leaders and influencers boycotted the brand, and protests broke out near several of the label’s brick and mortar locations. For a while, celebrities were eschewing D&G on the red carpet, but that’s slowly faded away in the 15ish months since the initial scandal. Holmes, who some of you might know as she manages a royal blog and Instagram account, took issue with a member of the BRF wearing the label, arguing that royals should be held to a higher standard than run-of-the-mill celebrities.

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I don’t disagree with that statement, and I enjoy Holmes’s commentary. She noted on Instagram on Tuesday that when Kate first wore this look in February of last year it was entirely possible her team had missed the memo on the brand’s stumble, but that it’s a bit harder to make that argument now and she’s worn the label a few times in the interim. Indeed, D&G first debuted publicly in Kate’s closet in (I think) 2016 and has regularly cropped up in. And as we well know, royal women often use their clothing to make subtle (and not so subtle) signals – Kate wearing an independent, women-owned brand, for example, versus incorporating a host country’s flag colors. So, it stands to reason that Kate and her team know what happened with D&G in 2018 and have decided to forge on nonetheless.

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As far as arguments go, it’s hard to take issue with the stance it would behoove Kate and her peers to steer clear of brands that have offended such a large swathe of people – God knows, there are plenty of other options. On that alone, I’m inclined to agree that D&G should be left on the hanger for the time being. Still, I’m left with the fact that I had no idea this drama unfolded, so it’s hard to muster up too much outrage. Interested in hearing your thoughts.

4 thoughts on “Should the DoC Be Wearing D&G?

  1. Sue

    Given William is the next king and the King has a duty to be impartial – isn’t avoiding something without a verdict of guilty in law, a form of showing partiality?

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    1. Hi Sue- I’m not sure to what you’re referring. D&G? There’s no discussion that they’ve broken the law here. No, I don’t think considering optics and making a judgment call accordingly is showing partiality – in fact, I’d say it’s a big part of what keeps the RF going. As an aside, Charles – not William – is the next king. Let me know if I’m misunderstanding your question!

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      1. Sue

        Rebecca, my apologies I did muddle that up. Of course, Charles is next king, and William second in line, but he would also be in heavy training for the role and as such, the duty to remain impartial. So the issue with D&G is public – but not legal in terms of a court decision. Therefore it seems to me that William, and consequently Katherine would and should remain quite impartial and not bow to the public issue.

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      2. Ah, so I think the absence of D&G would be remaining impartial, while Kate wearing the brand is in fact promoting them. Put another way, Kate isn’t wearing Dior today. We can’t assume from that she dislikes the label; in fact, we know nothing about her opinion by not wearing them. While D&G is cleaning up their PR blunder (to put it mildly), it would behoove Kate to stay out of the conversation.

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