Kate Middleton dresses in white for her return to the public stage

On Saturday morning Catherine, Princess of Wales, tiptoed back onto the public stage for the first time since announcing her cancer diagnosis this year in her signature colour-coordinated way, joining the rest of the royal family on the balcony of Buckingham Palace for the traditional final flyover of King Charles' birthday parade. She wore a knee-length white Jenny Packham dress with a black-and-white striped belt and a jaunty bow around her neck, topped off with a Phillip Treacy hat, angled just so.

The nautical theme was reflected in the navy suit with a sailor collar and white trim worn by Princess Charlotte (who also wore white shoes to accompany her mother), along with matching navy double-breasted suits with gold buttons, white shirts and bright blue ties of Princes George and Louis, which made a perfect trio with the Union Jack with William's bright red military uniform, which in turn matched that of Charles and Prince Edward.

As a family unit, on the balcony, they created the image of a united front, unmistakably controlled and unmistakably harmonious, for a photo shoot around the country. Nothing worrisome to look at here, the image seemed to say. It's business as usual. It will all be fine.

It was a typical image-building by the princess, who is still recovering. Catherine has always been finely attuned to the attention paid to what she wears as part of a family whose job is to symbolize, rather than speak, and the communication opportunities built into it. From the beginning of her marriage, she has used her clothes to indicate a clear compromise between tradition and modernization. Her wardrobe often seems geared towards conveying a respectful sensibility towards the future, rather than, say, a royal in a gilded bubble, whether that's mixing high-fashion brands with high fashion, recycling her dress several times , rent an evening dress or support British designers. .

Instead Catherine chose white, in itself a color full of meaning: of new beginnings, rebirth, purification.

She chose Jenny Packham and Phillip Treacy, both brands she has often worn before, both mainstays of the British fashion establishment.

And she chose a dress that looked like it had been recycled: first worn in 2023 at Buckingham Palace before King Charles' coronation, and now revisited. After all, right now she has other things to think about than shopping. But dressing for a purpose is also part of the job.

Looks like he's getting ready to do it again.

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