Princess Diana: Breaking Barriers (Jordan Sellinger)

When going on tours of different royal palaces, passing through a museum of the countries national or military history is most obvious, a favored section by most people seems to be the fashion of the Royals. As the hall of dresses continue, each dress gives the onlooker a glimpse of what life was like at that time. Walking past each dress and noticing Princess Diana’s dresses of the 1980s were bolder than those dresses before her displaying her own glamour in the royal world. Her dresses embodied how she was not afraid to show skin or sparkle unlike the royals before her. While each of the dresses exemplify the favored designers and style at that time, they also represent Diana’s state of mind.



Diana is famous for sending messages through the dresses she wears. In the featured image, the little black dress has become an icon for the “revenge dress” as the news of Prince Charles’ affair had just surfaced. Instead of staying away from the spotlight, Diana showed her cheating husband what he was missing. The idea behind the revenge dress is still relevant today as it embodies a strong woman that gets back up after facing difficulty. It is messages like these that the Princess was seen as a more daring figurehead than the others previous her.



Like any leader of a country, royalty is the face of the nation. While most royals show up to events in a fancyskirt and blazer, Diana was always sending a different message with the clothes she choose to wear. Not wearing business casual attire to meet other countries diplomats is a very bold statement made by Diana. She would instead wear, for example, a red polka dot dress when visiting Japan to represent the country’s sun motif. While still attending events and acting as a powerful royal figure, she would wear outfits that would be claimed as her own.



While Diana was the one to break the barriers for many royals to come, Kate Middleton is not far behind. Her style is simple yet elegant. Diana and Kate have bridged the gap between the fashion world and royalty by placing their own twist on the clothes they choose to be seen in.  With Princess Di’s leadership, fashion became a message open for interpretation.


-Jordan Sellinger

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