Archives for November 2015

November 30, 2015

The Princely Family Marches for the Environment

Yesterday, much of Monaco joined Princess Charlene and Prince Albert (and the babies!) for the Prince Albert II Foundation’s Marche Pour Le Climat. The groups congregated at the Princely Palace and marched for 3 km to the Stade Louis II. Since environmental consciousness is a huge passion of Prince Albert’s, his march yesterday promoted awareness for environmental sustainability and renewable energies. (Photos courtesy of Facebook.)

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The couple immersed themselves in the crowds, which were plentiful and passionate.

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To the delight of all those marching, the Princely couple decided to march with the twins! It’s wonderful that they chose to include the children in their support of environmental issues. Starting them early!

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Albert and Charlene were definitely dressed casually, but adorably matchy-matchy in their khakis and Prince Albert II Foundation jackets. I don’t know if it’s just me, but I think Charlene looks great in a baseball cap! Something I always envy, as I cannot pull off the classic look to save my life.

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Can we discuss the twins’ swoon-worthy outfits for a minute?! I mean, those little Uggs on Gabriella – I know they’ve been done a million times over, but anytime I see them on a child I think it’s the cutest thing ever. And I love how their jackets mimic their parents’ colors, too. Gotta appreciate a matching family!

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But back to Charlene. She also manages to look good in sneakers. Sigh.

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Her makeup, of which we got some small glimpses when a camera was able to see beneath the brim of her hat, was surprisingly bold for such a casual occasion. I love how she matched the bright red of her jacket with her lipstick shade, while maintaining a very low-maintenance look otherwise. It was quite balanced and looked fantastic.

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Of course, all the children fell in love with their princess, and she gave them ample hugs whenever possible. Much like she glows around water, Charlene seems to similarly light up when children are nearby – perhaps it’s her newfound motherhood that suits her so well, but it’s absolutely lovely to see her around kids. Everyone seems to have had a beautiful day supporting a wonderful cause.

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Until the next time, have a happy Monday!

November 26, 2015

Princess Charlene Addresses 30th Annual Vatican Healthcare Conference

My sincerest apologies for this incredibly late post, dear readers! I have been spending the last few days with my family, as my father underwent a heart transplant (any positive vibes you could send would be most welcome!) earlier this month and is now permitted visitors. Of course, upon my return, I found that Charlene had an engagement and that my write-up would end up being quite tardy. Long story short: sorry it’s late, but here it is! (Photos courtesy of Facebook.)

Charlene was in attendance at the 30th Annual Vatican Conference for Healthcare Workers, where she promoted the Princess Charlene Foundation and spoke out about the importance of water safety.

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The entire purpose of the Princess Charlene Foundation is to prevent drowning through water safety education and training. In her address, HSH described death by drowning as “one of those serious threats to public health worldwide,” and as a “terrible, silent killer.” The World Health Organization backed this up, estimating over 300,000 deaths by drowning per year. As the princess of a Catholic nation, her voice was definitely heard loud and clear at the Vatican Conference, and hopefully her concerns will be appreciated worldwide.

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However, in the past couple days I have noticed that most people have not been as interested in Charlene’s message as they are in her new hairstyle. And people are not enjoying it at all – frankly, the remarks I have seen out there have been downright unkind (not on this site, though, you guys are awesome). I am particularly surprised that this hairdo is meeting such intense criticism, firstly because I think it actually looks good on Charlene, secondly because she is certainly not the first fashion icon to sport a pixie cut, and thirdly because it wasn’t such a drastic change from her previous hairstyle. Her hair has been short for years now – certainly above her chin – and the pixie cut seems suited to her delicate features, much as it was for her predecessors who sported the cut: Audrey Hepburn, Twiggy, Charlize Theron, Emma Watson, etc. She might be the only princess out there to be daring enough to give it a try, but it’s kind of like her wearing leather pants to an engagement (like she did in this post). Different, bold, strong, modern, fearless, forward. I love her for that. But if people downright hate it, no need to freak: hair grows. Breathe.

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Aside the contentious hairstyle and your possible feelings about it, I certainly wish every American reader a Happy Thanksgiving and a wonderful start to the holiday season. Eat well and give thanks!

November 19, 2015

National Day in Monaco

Today is National Day in Monaco, and we got a lovely balcony appearance from the Princely family in honor of the occasion! Traditionally, National Day is held on the sovereign’s namesake-saint’s feast day (try to say that three times fast!), which for Albert would technically be November 15; however, Prince Rainier’s namesake saint’s day was November 19, and Albert just kept the tradition of having National Day on the 19th. In years past, the day was celebrated with fireworks on the evening before National Day; however, those festivities were understandably cancelled this year due to the atrocities in Paris. But the Princely family did keep the yearly Mass at the Cathedral, and followed that up with the usual balcony appearance, to the delight of the crowds. (Photos courtesy of Getty and Facebook.)

Princess Charlene looked sleek and stunning in a deep plum – or would you call it a plummy brown? – long-sleeved dress. I absolutely love everything about this dress: the mod, 60s style it evokes, the asymmetrical hemline (which I usually don’t like, but this time I do!), the dropped waistline, everything.

The hat complemented the fashion throwback, and it was a bold move in that it covered 100% of Charlene’s new haircut. We saw absolutely no hair today, and that was a daring choice. While not the same at all, this hat reminded me greatly of Princess Grace’s hat from National Day way back in the 60s:

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Like I said, they’re definitely not the same, but Princess Grace’s hat covered her entire chignon, which struck me as the same bold choice. It seems that Charlene has inherited her predecessor’s willingness to take sartorial risks. I wouldn’t be surprised to find that the choice today was a subtle nod to Princess Grace, though it would be a stretch.

Once again, she could be walking a runway. The woman looks like a model, people. The only part of this outfit that I’m not loving – get ready, I’m going to surprise you – is the footwear portion. These shoes don’t do it for me. It may be my love of a much higher heel, which a tall woman like Charlene obviously doesn’t need, but these just seemed too short with the outfit. What do you think?

I think my favorite part of this, though, is the color. As mentioned earlier, I can’t quite place it. I think maroon would be the closest match if I were looking to name it, but who cares. Whatever it is called, this color is dynamite on Charlene. It is rich, textured, deep, and eerily reminiscent of frosted blackberries. A total home-run! In addition, I mustn’t neglect mentioning one of the more recent members of the family, who also dresses impeccably:

Beatrice Borromeo. Holy cow, she was perfectly poised and polished. I loved the elegance of her ensemble, and though she doesn’t have the daring spirit of Charlene when it comes to her fashion, we must acknowledge that she has exquisite taste. Another win!

On to the cuter portion of the day: the balcony appearance included the adorable Princely twins! Prince Jacques and Princess Gabriella faced the crowds once again, this time bundled in charcoal-gray peacoats and leggings. They were doted on lovingly by their parents, who were beaming and obviously delighted to share the special moment with their children.

At 11 months old, the babies are probably now close to walking, and they both seemed particularly thrilled to push his feet up against the balcony rail. I think all mothers out there, including myself, let out a collective gasp at the sight of the babies with their feet teetering near the edge; however, we exhaled again quickly upon remembering that their parents’ arms were fully encircling them. Whew.

An absolutely beautiful family, and a perfect family day. Happy National Day to Monaco and to the Princely family – wishing everyone a wonderful year ahead!

November 18, 2015

Princess Charlene Debuts a New Haircut at the Red Cross

In anticipatory celebration of Monaco’s National Day, which will be tomorrow, Princess Charlene and Prince Albert went to the Red Cross to partake in parcel distribution. They met and spoke with several Monégasque people who arrived that day, and as part of their gift, the Princely couple included a photo from the twins’ baptism this past May. The weather was crisp and chilled in Monaco, as it usually is over National Day, giving the nation the perfect start to the Christmas season.

But on to the fashion! In keeping with the black theme she started the day prior, Charlene chose a very smart, black wrap dress with brown side clasps and a matching, wide-lapelled black coat. She paired the look with sheer black hose and very surprising, light-brown power heels.

I was teetering on the edge of disliking this ensemble at first, but after looking at it for awhile, I think I have gone to full-on loving it. At first the shoes gave me pause, but they won me over in the end – a daring way of adding an edge to an all-black look. It’s not like they’re hot-pink or anything; they’re very classy and neutral while still giving some pop to the outfit.

At first, again, I wasn’t enamored by the sheer black hose: I probably would have pulled for nude hosiery instead, but I would have been wrong. The only reason these shoes work as well as they do is because of the black hose. It was a stroke of genius. She looks like a supermodel:

Stunning!

But more striking than her outfit (or her neutral, perfect makeup: swoon) was the most obvious stand-out feature of this appearance: Charlene’s new haircut. Wow! Would we call this a pixie cut? I think we would. I like it! I’m a bit saddened by the loss of her sleek bob, but I respect her willingness to make such drastic changes to her hairstyle. In an interview with Prince Albert, he shared that she didn’t have any reservations – or particular interest in his opinion one way or the other, ha! – in regards to this decision. I love her for that. My official statement on the hair is that it is chic, stylish, and that Charlene is probably one of the only princesses on the planet who could – or would – be daring enough to pull it off.

A lovely way to start the National Day festivities in Monaco! I will be back with updates as the week progresses. Here’s hoping we get to see those babies in all their 11-month cuteness!

November 16, 2015

Monaco Supports Paris with Ceremony and Moment of Silence

It comes as absolutely no surprise that Monaco was shocked and devastated by the recent attacks in Paris. Being that the two nations share so much culture, land, and history, the Monégasque people have understandably been reaching out to their French neighbors all weekend. Prince Albert wasted no time in expressing his and Monaco’s solidarity with France – as so many nations did – and today the Princely Palace held a service surrounding a moment of silence for the victims of the tragedies. (Photos courtesy of Facebook.)

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Charlene was entirely appropriate in her expression of grief for those who lost their lives, in a plain, black ensemble. Obviously, this is no time to discuss the intricacies of her sartorial choices, but in case you are curious to see what Charlene wore, here is a close-up photo:

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Charlene looked respectful and dignified. Choosing slacks over a dress was an interesting move, one that I fully admire and appreciate. I feel like everyone looks to the Princess of Monaco for her dresses, and there really isn’t anything wrong with that, but Charlene’s choice to go with slacks seems (to me) to be a deliberate attempt to halt any focus on her fashion, and keep the focus on the tragedies in Paris. To that end, I will cease discussion on her wardrobe and simply join Monaco in expressing grief and continued support for Paris, the deceased, and their mourning families.