A guide to the royal christening fashion

PAULA JOYE
Last updated 14:11 24/10/2013

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The Duchess of Cambridge wore an ivory Alexander McQueen dress suit to the christening of Prince George on Wednesday. The soft ruffles of her ensemble referenced the delicate lace folds on her three-month-old son's gown, a replica of the robe Prince William was christened in 31 years ago.

The Duchess looked luminous in a full skirt and matching peplum jacket that was edged with a waterfall of dramatic crepe ruffles. The bespoke ensemble was created by Sarah Burton, creative director of iconic British fashion house, Alexander McQueen. Ms Burton is the design genius behind many of Kate's most significant public outfits, including her bridal gown and the beige lace shift dress she wore to the Queen's diamond jubilee.

Kate paired the elegant suit with a fascinator from one of her favourite milliners, Jane Taylor. The delicate pill box hat featured a soft organza rose and subtle veil trim. The Duchess opted for a pair of nude patent leather pumps from popular UK retailer Russell & Bromley. The classic "Park Ave" court shoes cost $NZ317 a pair.

Prince William carried his son into the chapel cutting a dapper figure in a chic navy suit, white shirt and printed sky blue tie. Prince George was christened by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, in the Chapel Royal at St James's Palace. The third in line to the throne, wore a reproduction of the intricate satin christening gown made for Queen Victoria's eldest daughter in 1841. The original dress was worn by more than 60 royal children including Prince William and Harry. The antique was too fragile for the infant Prince George to wear, requiring a replacement to be painstakingly recreated by the Queen's couturier Angela Kelly.

Pippa Middleton complemented her sister's neutral colour theme wearing a French navy lace shift dress under a cream trapeze coat. British designer Suzannah Crabb reportedly spent hundreds of hours researching royal christenings to ensure she created an appropriate outfit for the Duchess's popular sibling. Pippa topped off the look with a beaded pillbox hat from Edwina Ibbotson, nude suede shoes from Emmy and a simple clutch. Both grandmothers looked attractive with Carole Middleton choosing a floral-print navy and cream dress coat while the Duchess of Cornwall wore a stunning cream boucle coat with a strings of pearls.

Kate's style is often compared to that of her late mother-in-law, Princess Diana. The Jenny Packham polka-dot dress she wore when she left the hospital with baby George was an affectionate nod to the print Diana wore when she left hospital with William three decades earlier. However, her cream outfit was a vastly different and much more restrained than the bright pink smock Diana chose for the christening of The Duke Of Cambridge.

"The dress suit is 'signature Kate'," said the fashion director of Sunday Life, Penny McCarthy. "The Duchess is developing true, individual style. She knows which designers and silhouettes suit her and she's sticking to them. She loves dress coats, shift dresses, denim and blazers and she loves Alexander McQueen. I expect we'll see her in more and more of Sarah Burton's creations."

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- Sydney Morning Herald

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