Princess Diana Refused to Wear Chanel Heels Because She Really Was the Queen of Revenge Dressing

Princess Diana is regarded as the queen of revenge dressing — a style-savvy attitude she embraced from head to toe after 15 years of marriage to Prince Charles. They divorced in 1996 amid tabloid reports of Prince Charles’ relationship with former girlfriend Camilla Parker Bowles (whom he married after Diana died in 1997).

Fresh out of her divorce, Princess Di abandoned her fusty, conservative wardrobe and transformed into a fashion icon — eschewing puffy sleeves, padded shoulders and high-neck collars for sleeveless figure-hugging dresses, power pumps and an overall sexy-trendy image. It was then that her post-divorce, self-confident makeover became known as her signature take on “revenge dressing.”

Princess Diana, australia, 1996
Princess Diana attends a hospital event in Australia, 1996.
CREDIT: Rex Shutterstock

It’s a philosophy she incorporated into her wardrobe for high-profile appearances. In fact, in 1996 as she got ready for a hospital charity event in Australia, designer Jayson Brundson, who helped her get ready, revealed why she declined to be seen in a pair of Chanel heels.

Brundson recalled the moment in a May interview with Harper’s Bazaar when he helped Diana find accessories to match her Versace dress, and he presented her with some options.

Princess Diana, australia, 1996
Princess Diana attends a hospital event in Australia, 1996.
CREDIT: Rex Shutterstock

“I found a pair of Chanel shoes, and I said, ‘Well, these would look great with the Versace,’ and she said, ‘No, I can’t wear linked Cs, the double C,'” he said. “So I asked why, and she said, ‘It’s Camilla and Charles.'” Previously, Diana had worn the French label many times.

Princess Diana, australia, 1996
Princess Diana in Australia, 1996.
CREDIT: Rex Shutterstock

Brundson added, “I think for photo optics, people would have homed in on that considering it was so fresh after the divorce as well.”

Instead, Diana wore Gucci heels to the event — smartly avoiding tabloid fodder during the height of her self-empowered stage.

princess diana, kitten heels, slingback heels
Princess Diana in 1997 wearing powder blue slingback kitten heels with a matching dress and clutch.
CREDIT: Rex Shutterstock
Princess Diana outside London’s Japanese embassy in 1986.
Princess Diana outside London’s Japanese embassy in 1986.
CREDIT: REX

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