You know what a Pinterest fail is, don't you? BuzzFeed has a whole subcategory of posts that feature side-by-side photos of the perfect craft project on Pinterest and the less than perfect results when crafters try the project at home. Regrettably, Kate's ensemble tonight at the Royal Albert Hall was an analogous fashion fail.
The couple were joining the Queen for the annual Festival of Remembrance at Royal Albert Hall. Senior members of the BRF attend, as well as government dignitaries. New Prime Minister Theresa May is visible on the left of this picture. The performance is always a moving tribute to the fallen, so it is quite a somber evening and all the ladies wear black.
|Royal British Legion|
My first objection to Kate's ensemble is that the duchess never took the coat off! My Twitter pleas that someone at the Royal Albert Hall discreetly boost the heat fell on deaf ears, and Kate stayed bundled throughout the program. In recent years, she has moved away from her early habit of never, ever taking her coat off at events. Although I don't necessarily object to her keeping her coat on when the situation is appropriate, tonight was most certainly not one of those occasions. The Royal Albert is a plush and elegant venue. It is cozy and warm. Not the place to stay swaddled up as if ready to dash at a moment's notice.
All the ladies around Kate tonight looked perfect, in fact, they all seemed to be taking a leaf out of Kate's playbook from just last year. In 2015, on her Festival of Remembrance debut, the duchess wore a lace Dolce & Gabbana that suited the evening to a T:
Tonight, new Prime Minister Theresa May, Kate's aunt-in-law, Sophie Wessex, and the Duchess of Cornwall were all wearing lovely lace ensembles. (Those are Kate's Oscar de la Renta earrings)
When are we getting to the Pinterest fail, you ask? Now. This coat is drop-dead gorgeous. Look at it here in a product shot from Temperley. From the label's pre-fall 2014 collection, the coat is in a luxe black jacquard and features a retro styled mock-neck with pleats at the waist that give the skirt an almost balloon effect. It is oozing with the same class and sophistication as its namesake, Maria Callas.
It's breathtaking. Look at the back!
But, on Kate, all that perfection is lost. There were two primary factors to this fail. I know everyone loves her hair tonight, but when a coat is deriving quite a bit of character from the neckline, sweep those luscious locks up in an elegant chignon, or even a bold bun. Instead, with her bouncing curls loose across the front of the coat, Kate obscured the detailing and looked stuffy and suffocating.
The second problem is that the lighting just isn't good. This coat is black and all the details of the jacquard and the pleating blend together in the shadows of the Royal Albert Hall. It would be a more successful coat in the clear light of day, which begs the question, why didn't she wait and wear this tomorrow? It's like she got her calendar of ensembles out of order.
I was really hoping for a winner tonight, so it gives me no pleasure to say that the verdict is a miss. I hope this coat gets the recycle it deserves sooner rather than later, but tonight Kate kind of let it down. It just wasn't the right event. [Looking for ensemble IDs? See the Kate's Clothes entry here for full details.] To give you a boost before I say goodnight, this coat is named after Maria Callas, one of the most remarkable opera stars in history. Callas has a very unique voice, which is instantly recognizable in recordings. She is so moving and her voice so powerful, that she holds up against modern, high-definition albums. I love Callas's rendition of "Vissi d'Arte" from Puccini's Tosca. The despairing heroine...
Opera. Can anything else express human emotion so viscerally and yet so ethereally? Just stunning. I hope you enjoy this recording, have a wonderful night, and I will see you tomorrow! I know Kate will knock it out of the park... :)I lived for art, I lived for love,I never harmed a living soul!***I donated jewels to the Madonna's mantle,and offered songs to the stars and to heaven,which thus did shine with more beauty.In this hour of grief,why, why, Lord,ah, why do you reward me thus?