28 June 2011

Style watch! Charlene Wittstock: The New Grace Kelly?

What’s this? Someone trying to upstage Kate Middleton and Prince William? Grazia Daily is NOT best pleased; though we do have a bit of a soft spot for Charlene Wittstock, the former Olympic swimmer who’s set to marry Monaco’s Prince Albert this weekend and thus become the first woman to marry into the Monaco royal family since Grace Kelly in 1956.

There are a list of obvious comparisons between the two (arguably more obvious than the occasionally spurious comparisons between Kate Middleton and Princess Diana). Both Charlene and Grace are blonde, and beautiful, and elegant. Charlene favours classic designs by Armani, Ralph Lauren, and Michael Kors in muted colours – teal, grey, silver and off-white – for eveningwear, and tailored separates and suits for day. Grace Kelly, of course, was renowned for her super chic style and flawless appearance, opting for celebrated design houses like Hermes, Givenchy and Yves Saint Laurent alongside Hollywood designers including Edith Head and Helen Rose, who created her now-iconic wedding dress.

Where Grace Kelly and Prince Ranier’s wedding in 1956 was touted as ‘the wedding of the century’, the guestlist for Charlene and Albert’s wedding this weekend is nothing if not stellar, with Karl Lagerfeld, Giorgio Armani, Richard Branson, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Philip Green and the Earl and Countess of Wessex attending, according to a palace source. The wedding celebration will last for three days, with a concert by The Eagles and a cocktail reception on Thursday night, a civil ceremony on Friday and the main Palace-based ceremony on Saturday.

Wittstock’s dress for the Roman Catholic ceremony on Saturday afternoon will be by Armani, for whom she is an ambassador. In fact, from being a girl who turned up to her first Red Cross ball in 2007 wearing a green dress that she'd borrowed and believed made her look ‘like a Christmas tree’, Wittstock has developed into a fully-fledged style icon for Monaco, telling US Vogue that ‘Grace Kelly forged a link between Monaco and the movie world, and I would like to create a strong bond between Monaco and the fashion community’, and also that she would like Stella McCartney and Manolo Blahnik to open shops in Monaco. She’s EVEN suggested that she wants to start a Monaco Fashion Week. So what do you reckon, do we have a new style icon on our hands?

- Alex Butt


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