Skip to Content


The Middleton double standard

2 June 2014

8:21 PM

2 June 2014

8:21 PM

I imagine there are very few people who haven’t heard about the Duchess of Cambridge’s clothing catastrophe in Australia. And, of course, this isn’t the first time that the duchess has had clothing issues. The wind has caused her to come a cropper at a variety of events – and who could forget the furore when the French edition of Closer ran pictures of her walking around topless while on holiday in the South of France.

But can you imagine what people (and the press) would be saying if, rather than it being Kate, it was her sister, Pippa, whose pants (or lack thereof) had been on show for the cameras? Rather than arguing that the pictures were a gross invasion of her privacy, it’s far more likely that the complaints would be targeted at Pips rather than the paps. Talk of the heir to the throne’s aunt being ‘tacky’, or not knowing how to behave, would be rife. Which, by my reckoning, is a pretty unreasonable double-standard. Why should two sisters provoke such different reactions, simply because of who they have (or haven’t) married?

More to the point, I can fully appreciate that a weighted hem might ruin the line of a dress, but at the same time, I think in this case it might be worth it.

Subscribe to The Spectator today for a quality of argument not found in any other publication. Get more Spectator for less – just £12 for 12 issues.

Show comments


The Spectator Comment Policy

Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.