Friday, January 4, 2013

Luxarazzi 101: Royal Recycling and Clothes Sharing

Photos: Semana (left) / SIP (right)
The outfit of the groom's mother was one of the most talked about subjects at the recent wedding of Archduke Christoph and Archduchess Adelaide of Austria as Archduchess Marie-Astrid's suit bore a striking resemblence to the outfit that her mother, the late Grand Duchess Josephine-Charlotte, wore on the day of the enthronement of Grand Duke Henri back in 2000. (Note: The picture of Marie-Astrid was taken outside in broad daylight while the picture of her mother was taken inside the palais, thus the difference in colour.) Even if it wasn't the very same suit - which I doubt - it was at least cut in the very same way.

The wedding of her second son wasn't the first time Archduchess Marie-Astrid recycled an old outfit for an important event. The pictures below show the born Princess of Luxembourg at three different weddings.
Photos: Tom Wagner (left), Belga (middle), Hola (right)
On the left Archduchess Marie-Astrid can be seen wearing a brown and white edition of the aforementioned outfit at the wedding of her cousin Prince Philippe of Belgium, the Duke of Brabant, in 1999. Four years later, she wore the same suit for the wedding of Prince Philippe's younger brother Prince Laurent (middle) and finally on the right picture you can see her at the wedding of her oldest daughter Archduchess Marie-Christine in 2008 repeating the suit once again though always with different accessories.

There are a couple of more examples of Archduchess Marie-Astrid repeating outfits to different events, she is the Luxembourgish Queen of Recycling so to speak, which just shows us that good taste never goes out of fashion.

But clothes sharing certainly isn't a new thing within the Grand Ducal family - nor limited to the oldest daughter of Grand Duke Jean and Grand Duchess Joséphine-Charlotte - and sometimes it even crossed the border to neighbouring Belgium.
Photos: SIPA (left), AGIP (right)
For a state visit of the Italian president in 1980, Queen Fabiola, sister-in-law of the late Grand Duchess Joséphine-Charlotte wore an evening gown by French designer Pierre Balmain, who is best known in Grand Ducal Family for designing the wedding gowns of Grand Duchess Maria-Teresa, Princess Marie-Astrid and Princess Margaretha. For the latter's wedding in 1982, her older sister wore the same Balmain dress as Queen Fabiola two years earlier.
Photos: Guyaux
But Queen Fabiola wasn't the only Belgian queen who lent a dress to one of her Luxembourgish nieces. Above you can see Princess Margaretha and Queen Paola wearing the same dress with a floral print.

Especially during the early years of Princess Tessy's marriage we could observe a similar clothes sharing phenomenon.
Photos: Tom Wagner
They were light hat-sharing moments like National Day 2009 that saw Tessy wearing the very same fascinator that Grand Duchess Maria Teresa had worn for her daughter-in-law's wedding a few years earlier.
Photos: Getty Images (left), Luxemburger Wort / (right)
A year earlier there was some heavier clothes sharing going on on National Day. In 2008, then Tessy de Nassau wore the very same dress and blazer combo including the very same hat that the Grand Duchess had worn four years earlier at the Spanish wedding of the Prince of Asturias and Letizia Ortiz.
Photos: Corbis (left), Cour grand-ducale (middle), Oreste-Schaller (right)
The evening of National Day 2008 saw another gown repetition: this black and white number was first worn by Grand Duchess Maria Teresa for an event in Berlin in 2000, in 2007 it was worn by Princess Alexandra for a private celebration of her aunt Princess Margaretha and uncle Prince Nikolaus of Liechtenstein and finally in 2008 by Princess Tessy for her very first tiara appearance at the National Day gala.

Already the newest and soon-to-be newest members of the family are incooperated in the clothes sharing business of the Grand Ducal Family.
Photos: Semana (left), PPE (right)
For the wedding of Archduke Christoph, Hereditary Grand Duchess Stephanie wore the same Natan suit that her sister-in-law Princess Alexandra had worn for Grand Duke Jean's 90th birthday celebration in January 2011.
Photos: Semana (left), Luxemburger Wort / (right)
Meanwhile, Claire Lademacher, Prince Felix's fiancée, did an easy lection of clothes borrowing by taking a fur wrap from her future mother-in-law's wardrobe to top of her Zara coat.

Other clothes sharing examples at the wedding included the gala outfit of Princess Maria-Anunciata of Liechtenstein. Seems like Anunciata rummaged in her aunt's clothes closet to bring out this pea green and purple taffeta monstrosity from 2003. Well, to each her own, or better have a look at the muted section of the wardrobe next time. Also, Archduchess Marie-Christine wore a fur-trimmed cape that looked strinkingly similar to one also worn by her mother.

[Also check out Luxarazzi 101: Royal Recycling and Clothes Sharing Revisited!]


  1. Let's face it - these are expensive, often designer clothes. They are well made, with good fabrics, and probably decent seams and such to allow for alterations. And, for the most part, they are fairly classic. Why shouldn't they pass them around to the various female family members? They aren't in the Monaco-level in terms of disposable income. Besides, these ladies have lots of other interests than being clothes-horses. More power to them! And what fodder for research and posts . . . .

    Thanks for the many great examples of royal recycling!

  2. Indeed it shows that there is more to being a princess than the clothes, which a lot of people (and especially the media) seem to forget. Classic cuts never really go out of fashion.

    In fact I would love for Anunciata and her female cousins to have a look at the old wardrobe - if it still exists - of Grand Duchess Josephine-Charlotte from the 1950's and early 60's; there are so many beautiful ball gowns that would look stunning on them and not an inch out of fashion.

    Though there are some of the recycled outfits above I'm not particularly fond of (Anunciata's skirt because of the colours or Marie-Christine's because it doesn't fit her age IMHO), I really like that they are doing it.

  3. wow, these Lux ladies sure know how to recycle! As Sarah says, these are quality clothes, and I'm glad that they are reused by the GDF, just like any other person does.

    I wonder what's the name of the model of the coat worn by Claire at the wedding? (Zara coat in bordeaux colour)

    I'm glad the pea and purple dress got retired from MT wardrobe. At least Annunciata wears it much better as a skirt. Well done to her!

    I had never seen before this picture of the gala ( I wish Alex had chosen something more young and fun. Does anyone know who the lady in red is? Maybe one of MT's nieces?

  4. It is indeed one of the daughters of MT's sister Catalina. All the cousins of MT and Henri's children are very close even though they are not technically related.

    Sorry, I don't know what the name of Claire's Zara coat is but here is a picture of it on a model: