Royals

From Royal Rebel to Style Icon: the Legacy of Princess Margaret

Image credit: Legion-Media

Here is the reason why Princess Margaret was the royal family's biggest celebrity.

Princess Diana is considered to be the main rebel in the history of the British royal family — she was famous for breaking all possible rules and protocols.

But she had an equally famous predecessor, who broke all stereotypes about royalty long before Lady Di. Her name was Princess Margaret. We will tell you everything you need to know about Elizabeth II's younger sister.

The queen's sister

Princess Margaret is the daughter of King George VI and the younger sister of Queen Elizabeth II. Members of the royal family were always very friendly, and as children, the girls spent almost all their time together. However, even at a young age, there was a significant difference in their personalities and behavior.

Elizabeth was always more reserved and serious, while Margaret was cheerful, boisterous and easygoing. It is unsurprising, since the future queen was destined for an honorable but difficult mission, while her younger sister always knew that she would be relieved of much of the royal duties. Their differences were noticed even by their father, who called Elizabeth his "pride" and Margaret his "joy".

The royal rebel

The princess had a style unusual for her status. It made her a favorite of newspapers, a sort of celebrity among the royal family. Everyone knew that she loved men, parties and alcohol and that is why she was more likely to be found in a nightclub than at a formal reception. Before her marriage to Antony Armstrong-Jones, she actively pursued affairs with noble and wealthy bachelors.

According to rumors she had about 30 men in her "lover's list". And she did not abandon her habits after marriage. One of her lovers, Baronet Roddy Llewellyn, at the time of their meeting was 17 years old. The information about their relationship alarmed the press and officials. After the details of another affair hit the press, Margaret and her husband filed for divorce, which was scandalous at the time. In addition, the princess was also a heavy smoker and even earned herself a serious lung condition because of this.

Fashion icon

She was remembered not only for her scandalous reputation but also for her outstanding sense of style. She was one of the most fashionable women of her time, especially in contrast to her more reserved and conservative older sister. She loved bold bright colors, trendy designs (she was one of the first in England to wear New Look) and non-trivial accessories — especially long gloves and original hats.

And, of course, furs and jewelry — she had an impressive collection of coats, capes, necklaces, tiaras and brooches.

Each of her public appearances was discussed as much as the appearances of Hollywood actresses. All British women dreamed of being at least a little like her. Princess Margaret's style was so unique and recognizable that in the 1950s it was secretly called "The Margaret look".

A fan of Dior

An important part of the princess' life was dedicated to Dior. Margaret was a passionate admirer of Monsieur Dior — she fell in love with his New Look style as soon as she saw his debut collection.

For all her public appearances she ordered dresses from Dior — despite the fact that the royal etiquette dictated her to wear clothes of British manufacture. She was, as we would say now, a kind of Ambassador of Dior in Great Britain.

Her biggest dream was to hold the show of her favorite couturier in her country — and she succeeded. Twice! First in 1954, and then in 1958, but this time with a young Yves Saint Laurent. Both events were held for charity purposes — to raise funds for the British Red Cross. It helped Princess Margaret to strengthen her bond with her favorite fashion house and Dior to strengthen its position in the British market.