Oops – something Kate Middleton and I have in common

Rumor has it that Queen Elizabeth has stepped in to preside over Kate Middleton’s fashions to prevent more wardrobe malfunctions.

Grown-up image

The report by royal correspondent Katie Nicholl in the Mail on Sunday states that the Duchess of Cambridge will be wearing lower hemline dresses and not her usual frilled, girlish frock dresses “in case they detract from the newly grown-up image she needs to project and also to prevent any wardrobe malfunctions”.


These have been happening more frequently, starting in Calgary when a gust of wind caught the skirt of the Duchess’s short dress and flashed her underwear to the world. (Photos above from Daily Mail)


I agree that many of Kate’s fashions are a bit “girly” and she looks best and most sophisticated in more tailored dresses. When it comes to her wardrobe malfunctions, they have not been caused so much by her skirts being a tad short but rather her preference for “floaty” fabrics in fuller styles which allow even the slightest breeze to lift them.

Who hasn’t had a wardrobe malfunction? The queen apparently

Why is it that the Queen has never had a public wardrobe malfunction? She does tend to stay away from short frilly skirts. It is believed that the hems of her dresses have been weighted down (or regally commanded not to flip).


As a female speaker I have to be aware of stage sight lines and especially if sitting down at a panel. An embarrassing wardrobe failure happened to me once. I had purchased an oh-so-soft cashmere knit skirt and wore it proudly to deliver a presentation. But following the presentation, I decided to go shopping.

As I walking around a store, I felt a draft on my behind. When I turned around to see if the door had been left open, I noticed this woman’s face register a look of shock.


I looked down and my skirt was gone. It was down around my ankles. I turned beet red and swiftly hiked my skirt back up to my waist and I didn’t let go of it. When I got home I discovered the waistband was made of knitted material and didn’t have enough structure to stay in place.Thank my lucky stars it didn’t happen while on stage delivering my presentation. That might have ended up on YouTube.

Fashion tips learned the hard way: try new garments on at home and anticipate wind gusts before venturing out.

Stuff happens

Wardrobe malfunctions happen to all of us, they rarely kill you… but they sure can embarrass you. My advice, choose your looks and fabrics carefully.  What’s more important is how you recover from them and learn from them so you don’t repeat them (hopefully). My motto is expect the unexpected, but like the scouts, be prepared.

So what about you? Feel free to share your experiences and tips with us so we can all have a laugh and know we’re all human (even the royals).

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Posted by Joanne Blake – Canadian corporate image consultant and reformed wardrobe malfunctioner

About the author 

Joanne Blake

Canadian speaker, corporate image consultant & business etiquette expert. If you're interested in booking a presentation, keynote or coaching, contact me. Based in Calgary / Edmonton, Alberta in western Canada.

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