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 Diana Couture--"The Crown: Season 4" vs. the Real Princess Diana...and her fashion

"The Crown" Season 4 follows the life and reign of Queen Elizabeth II during the tumultuous 1977-1990 years including Margaret Thatcher's premiership, Prince Charles and Lady Diana, the ongoing and torrid affair between Prince Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles, and much more. Naturally, as a Fashion and Costume aficionado--who grew up during this era and literally "lived" these times along with the royals--I am fascinated by the outstanding costumes beautifully done by Emmy Award-winning costume designer Amy Roberts. Knowing that so much of the fashion worn by these famous people have become so iconic and made an indelible mark in our "Fashion Brains", I wanted to do a "Visual Recap" of "The Crown" Costumes vs. the Real Thing, particularly with Princess Diana, Prince Charles and lastly, Margaret Thatcher.

Princess Diana:

1981, The Engagement--The story goes that Lady Di went shopping and stopped into the Belville Sassoon boutique and received snobby treatment from the sales associates so...she walked over to Harrods and bought the famous royal blue suit (to match the sapphire engagement ring), recreated here for "The Crown".

The Wedding Gown--In "The Crown", the iconic Lady Di Wedding Gown made a brief appearance (too brief for me!) but we got enough of a glimpse to see that the show's costume designer reproduced it to the last detail. As it is the work of costume designers, they normally use "artistic license" with some costumes (when working on a show or film where the characters were real), but with such an iconic dress as this, it was wise to copy it just as is. Amy Roberts (the costume designer) collaborated with David Emanuel (one half of the gown's original designer duo) to replicate the dress. The design was made in-house at Elstree Studios and they had SEVEN fittings. The lace was a copy of the original one made in the same Nottinghamshire factory.

1981 Peruvian Sweater/Jumper--Lady Di wore this brightly colored sweater (or "jumper" as it is called in the UK) with llamas, stripes, and Peruvian lady details--for a pre-honeymoon photo op at Balmoral (photo, right). In "The Crown", the sweater made an appearance as well, with Charles' character also costumed in the same look the actual prince wore. 

Black Sheep Sweater--Designed by Joanna Muir and Sarah Osborne, co-founders of "Warm & Wonderful", the jumper style was made famous by Diana as it was emblematic of her standing within the royal family--as the "black sheep". 

Yellow Overalls--The real Diana is seen (right) wearing yellow overalls with a fruit-printed top. In "The Crown", the costume designer used the same look of the yellow overalls and the shirt, plus addED a comfy hand-knitted looking sweater. 

Pink & White Checked Pants with Pink Sweater--The real Princess Diana wore this look comprising of pink-and-white plaid cropped pants with a white shirt and pink cardigan. "The Crown"'s Diana was seen rollerskating her way through the palace wearing a similar look only the checked pants had a larger print and the sweater went from a cardigan to a v-neck.

1983 Blue Dress, Australian Tour--Princess Diana wore this blue dress to meet the Australian Prime Minister and his wife in Canberra in 1983. In "The Crown", the dress, as well as the hat, were recreated for the same scene. 

1981 Tartan Dress--Princess Diana wore this tartan plaid outfit (it is a jacket and skirt) originally to the Braemar Highland Games in Scotland a year after her marriage to Prince Charles (right photo). On "The Crown" (left photo), she wore it before her wedding.

1981 Wedding Rehearsal Printed Dress--In reality, Princess Diana wore a printed dress with blouson 3/4 sleeves for her wedding rehearsal (right photo). On the show (left photo), the costume designer chose to recreate it for the same occasion.
Photo-Op Dress with Prince William--This printed dress was so iconic, featuring billowy sleeves and an exaggerated pilgrim-like collar. Originally, Diana wore this dress for a photo op with her son Prince William (right). Roberts recreated it as shown above in comparison (left photo).

1983 Visit to Ayers Rock (now called Uluru) Australia--Roberts perfectly re-created the exact looks for both Diana and Charles. The safari shirt on Charles and the white button-front cotton dress on Diana were almost exact matches.

Flower printed vest and matching skirt--Roberts recreated this look for a scene at Buckingham Palace but in reality, Diana wore it for a polo match.

1981 Belville Sassoon Red and Gold Gown--Princess Diana wore this chiffon dress for the "For Your Eyes Only" James Bond movie premiere in London. The dress is from Sassoon's 1981 "Trousseau" collection. In the series, a different necklace and tiara were added to the look.

1988 Victor Edelstein White Satin and Sequined Jacquard Ballgown with Matching Bolero--Diana wore this beautiful late 80's gown to a banquet at Elysee Palace, Paris France. The look featured a strapless drop-waist gown with a box-pleat Duchesse satin skirt and a sequined jacquard bolero jacket.

1983 Wentworth Ball Australian Tour "Cinderella" Gown--The original was designed by Bruce Oldfield. It was a shimmering blue gown that featured ruffled layers and a gold waistband belt. It was impeccably recreated by "The Crown" costume designer. This one is really a stand-out!

Prince Charles:

The Double-Breasted Jacket--Prince Charles is famous for his sartorial style and in particular, his love of double-breasted jackets. On "The Crown", costume designer Amy Roberts stayed true to the stylish royal and his penchant for the double-breasted look. The fit, design...even the size of the lapels were true to the late 70's-early 80's styles of those aristocratic jackets. Also, yes, the hands-in-the-pockets air of if this custom Savile Row $5,000-costing jacket was like...a common cardigan. Hardly.  

Margaret Thatcher:

The Iron Blue Lady--Margaret Thatcher was famous for a lot of things, but style-wise, it was her blue suits. On "The Crown", we saw actress Gillian Anderson take the role and run with it. And we also saw...that blue suit!

Click below to watch "The Crown" Season 4-Costumes of The Crown:

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