Royals are known for their modest dress code, so when Meghan Markle attended a gala performance of Hamilton on Wednesday wearing a tuxedo dress from Judith & Charles that showed off her bare legs, conservative royal fans questioned her fashion choice. But the Duchess of Sussex is not the first royal to wear a short dress—her sister-in-law Kate Middleton often exposes a little leg, too.
In 2017, the Duchess of Cambridge visited the new V&A Exhibition Road Quarter at the Victoria & Albert Museum in a Gucci tweed black and white dress with red accents. The skirts hem appears to touch Middleton’s leg just above the knee, and it is unclear whether she is wearing nude tights.
In 2015, Kate was also photographed outside of a charity event wearing a hunter green two-piece set by LK Bennett that, again, bared her legs.
She also sported a short hem in 2013 with a polka dot Topshop frock, which she wore during a visit to the inauguration of Warner Bros. Studios Leavesden.
Even during her Canadian tour in 2011, months after her royal wedding to Prince William, she wore white wrap dress by Reiss that seemed to fall a few inches above the knee. She still rocked the look with a bright red fascinator and matching pumps.
On Wednesday, what perhaps caught most people by surprise was the fact that Meghan decided not to wear tights with her ensemble. Nude stockings are a way for royals to give the illusion of bare legs without actually doing so.
“You never see a royal without their nude stockings,” Royal expert Victoria Arbiter told Business Insider. “I would say that’s really the only hard, steadfast rule in terms of what the Queen requires.”
However, the Duchess of Sussex did not break royal protocol even if she decided not to wear tights. (“There are no rules for royal women regarding pantyhose,” royal expert and historian Marlene Koenig told BAZAAR.com.)
Besides, no one seems to ever bat an eye when Prince George wears his short shorts, right?
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