Turns out, it costs a pretty penny to be royal outing ready. According to one royal expert, Meghan Markle’s new wardrobe has cost approximately $1 million since she became engaged to Prince Harry. I, for one, can totally relate to the new Duchess of Sussex’s new lifestyle of having a complimentary work wardrobe. It reminds me of the three summers I spent working at the zoo as a teenager, except much more glamorous and a lot less khaki.
Entertainment Tonight calculated the cost of Markle’s outfits from her first one-on-one meeting with the Queen to her wedding gown, which proves that designer duds add up fast. Her wedding dresses are by far the most expensive items on the list, with her Givenchy wedding gown costing over $440,000 and the Stella McCartney gown she wore to the reception costing about $157,000.
By comparison, the rest of her bespoke wardrobe sounds like a steal – a very relative term when it comes to designer pieces. The Givenchy cape dress she wore the first time she and the Queen had a solo appointment was $18,000, the pale pink Carolina Herrera dress she wore to Trooping the Colour was $4,000, an Oscar de la Renta dress she wore to Prince Harry’s cousin’s wedding cost nearly $6,000, and the dress she wore to Prince Charles’ birthday party, a sheer dress by Goat, was just over $600. That’s not to mention a Prada skirt suit she wore to the Young Leaders Awards Ceremony, and several other events where she’s worn designer ensembles, frequently Givenchy, complete with shoes and accessories.
On Saturday, Duchess of Sussex attended the annual Queen’s birthday parade. A longstanding tradition, the event is so called because military units show their “colours,” or flags, and then troop (march) around. As many as 1,400 soldiers performed drills to honor the day, and thousands line the streets to watch the fanfare.
So who’s paying for this gorgeous, Givenchy-heavy wardrobe? Journalist and royal expert Kate Nicholl told ET that the bill was being picked up by her new father-in-law, Prince Charles, who gets the money from his $28 million yearly salary. Being a royal is a full-time job. Like her new sister-in-law Kate Middleton, Markle is likely working with an assistant who puts in requests with designers to send samples to choose from. Whatever she chooses is then paid for in full. Royals do not accept designer clothes for free, reports People. While they are allowed to accept certain types of gifts, the royals aren’t allowed to accept gifts intended for commercial gain, which includes clothing. Whatever Markle and Middleton wear quickly sells out, so giving them free clothing could be used as free marketing. Given Middleton’s knack for getting more than one wear per ensemble out of her own stylish wardrobe, Markle will more than likely be repeating at least a few of these outfits.