Sunday 23 July 2017

The heartwarming reason why Princess Diana changed royal protocol and stopping wearing gloves

Britain's Princess Diana arrives on October 4, 1990 for a charity gala at the Departmental Auditorium in Washington.
Britain's Princess Diana arrives on October 4, 1990 for a charity gala at the Departmental Auditorium in Washington.
Alec Guinness and Princess Diana at a gala dinner at the 40th Cannes film festival on the French riviera in 1987
Princess Diana greets patients and visitors while touring the Cook County Hospital pediatric ward in Chicago 05 June.
Prince Charles and Princess Diana pose together during their honeymoon in Balmoral, Scotland, 19th August 1981. (Photo by Serge Lemoine/Getty Images)
Prince Charles Prince Charles and the Princess of Wales at Caernarvon Castle during an official tour of Wales, 27th October 1981.
Princess Diana at a banquet given at Claridges hotel for King Khalid of Saudi Arabia, 11th June 1981. (Photo by Keystone/Hulton Archive/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Princess Diana
Princess Diana at a Royal Gala Performance that opened the Barbican Arts Centre in London, 4th March 1982.
Britain's Princess Diana greets visitors at the Bolshoi Theater in Moscow on June 15, 1995 before teh performance of "Silfida".
Princess Diana And Prince Charles watch an official event during their first royal Australian tour 1983 IN Newcastle, Austrlia. (Photo by Patrick Riviere/Getty Images)
UN Special Envoy to Angola Alioune Beye (R) and Princess Diana, during a campaign against land mines in Angola in 1997
Britain's Princess Diana shakes hands with Argentine President Carlos Menem 24 November at the presidential residence in Buenos Aires.
Diana, Princess of Wales, greets the crowd on a walking tour of the Northwestern University campus 04 June in Evanston, Illinois.
US President Ronald Reagan and his wife Nancy welcome 09 November 1985 in White House, Washington, D.C., Princess Diana and her husband Prince Charles
Caitlin McBride

Caitlin McBride

Princess Diana shunned the traditional royal practice of wearing gloves at official engagements in order to be seen as more approachable.

Before her tragic death in 1997, Diana, dubbed the 'People's Princess' was determined to eschew the protocol of the British monarchy in order to "convey approachability and warmth", which she expressed through her fashion choices.

According to Eleri Lynn, the curator of a new exhibition Diana: Her Fashion Story at Kensington Palace, the late royal wanted to shake hands directly with people and have the flexibility to hug any children that came to see her.

"When she was visiting hospitals for example she would wear cheerful clothes that would convey warmth and often chunky jewelry so that children could come and play with them," she explained to People magazine.

Diana, Princess of Wales, greets the crowd on a walking tour of the Northwestern University campus 04 June in Evanston, Illinois.
Diana, Princess of Wales, greets the crowd on a walking tour of the Northwestern University campus 04 June in Evanston, Illinois.

"She abandoned the royal protocol of wearing gloves because she liked to hold hands when visiting people or shake hands and have direct contact. She also stopped wearing hats because she said, 'You can’t cuddle a child in a hat.'"

Lynn explains that in the early days of Diana's career in the spotlight, when she was introduced to the world at Prince Charles' fiancée, she didn't have a royal wardrobe to match and often had to borrow clothes from well-connected friends.

"Her wardrobe was playful, and she borrowed a lot of clothes from her friends. But she quickly learned what would work in a public capacity. She had a great design eye and a real knack for fashion. Although she wanted to focus on her work, she wanted to use fashion to help that," she added.

In her later years, her style evolves with less clichéd princess ruffles in favour of more tailored high fashion pieces from designers like Catherine Walker, Paul Costelloe and Armani.

Prince Charles and Princess Diana pose together during their honeymoon in Balmoral, Scotland, 19th August 1981. (Photo by Serge Lemoine/Getty Images)
Prince Charles and Princess Diana pose together during their honeymoon in Balmoral, Scotland, 19th August 1981. (Photo by Serge Lemoine/Getty Images)
US President Ronald Reagan and his wife Nancy welcome 09 November 1985 in White House, Washington, D.C., Princess Diana and her husband Prince Charles

"The '90s you really see her fashion is pared back and simplifie. Following her separation from the Prince of Wales, those close to her recall she wanted to be known as a work horse, rather than a clothes horse, and she knew that to focus attention on her work she needed to simplify her daytime look," Lynn added.

Britain's Princess Diana greets visitors at the Bolshoi Theater in Moscow on June 15, 1995 before teh performance of
Britain's Princess Diana greets visitors at the Bolshoi Theater in Moscow on June 15, 1995 before teh performance of "Silfida".

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