The global children’s wear market is about to get another big boost.
Yesterday as Britain’s Prince Harry and wife Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, kicked off their official royal visit to Australia, Kensington Palace announced the exciting news that the couple is expecting their first child. Undoubtedly, the queen’s newest great-grandchild — due in April and poised to be seventh in line to the throne — will mean big money for kids’ fashion brands.
We’ve already seen the serious sales-boosting effect of cousins Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis (the children of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge), who turn everything they wear into retail gold as royal fans strive to emulate their style. Indeed, valuation consultancy Brand Finance estimates that Charlotte will boost the U.K. economy by a staggering $5 billion over her lifetime, while brother George will contribute a healthy $3.6 billion, and Louis will add about as much.
Several footwear brands have benefited in a big way from the royals’ favor, among them Papouelli. The London-based label just had a major moment in the spotlight last week at Princess Eugenie’s Windsor Castle wedding to Jack Brooksbank. Three-year-old Charlotte and her five fellow bridesmaids paired their classic white dresses with Papouelli’s white leather Siena Mary Jane shoes.
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George, meanwhile, has been spotted quite a few times in Papouelli’s preppy navy blue Barnie loafers, including while posing for his family’s 2017 Christmas card photo and attending his brother Louis’ christening. When George first stepped out in the shoes during a 2016 visit to Canada, Papouelli co-founder Nicole Robinson described it as “an amazing boost that puts our brand on a world stage.” She said the publicity blitz was instantaneous. “My phone started bleeping madly with people worldwide wanting to know about Papouelli and all of our shoes. It was very exciting. The support and endorsement that the Duke and Duchess [of Cambridge] give to British brands is immensely valuable.”
Sales of Crocs’ colorful clogs skyrocketed after a then-toddler-aged George wore a navy blue pair to a charity polo match in 2015. Amazon’s U.K. site reported a 1,500 percent spike in purchases of kids’ Crocband shoes since photos of the young prince at the event were beamed across the internet.
Considering the Duchess of Sussex’s tremendous popularity, glamorous style and willingness to relax the royal fashion rules a bit, her future baby will certainly be a major trendsetter. Her U.S. roots might also mean that more American brands make their way into her child’s wardrobe. And perhaps the newest royal tot will inspire a few adult designer labels to introduce their first kids’ collections. Let the royal baby countdown begin.
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