Meghan Markle Brings Pleats, PDA, and Vintage Chanel to the Polo

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex at the Royal Salute Polo Challenge on Friday. Photo: Yaroslav Sabitov / PA Images / Getty Images

If you haven’t yet had the early days of the Trump presidency eternal sunshine-d from your brain, cast your mind back to May 2017, when Prince Harry and Meghan Markle sent royal watchers’ eyebrows flying up under their fascinators after getting caught holding hands at the Polo Challenge in Ascot’s Coworth Park. Seven years later, it’s déjà vu all over again this week, with the now Duke and Duchess of Sussex engaging in some light PDA at the polo in (quick Google)… Florida?

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex on Friday.Photo: Yaroslav Sabitov / PA Images / Getty Images

The sum total of my knowledge of polo amounts to one late-night viewing of Pretty Woman (key takeaways: wear polka dots, resist “Come on, Dover”ing, steer clear of Jason Alexander), so I won’t attempt to weigh in on what happened during the Royal Salute Polo Challenge match on Friday. What I will point out is that it raised funds for both Prince Harry’s charity Sentebale and every tabloid under the Murdoch umbrella thanks to photos of Meghan presenting Harry with both a kiss and what I’m fairly certain is the Triwizard Tournament trophy. (“You’re a Windsor, Harry.”) For what it’s worth, if you, like me, still don’t understand why ponies don’t get more credit for doing all the hard work in polo, there’s hope; as part of the Sussexes’—very underreported—deal with Netflix, Harry is making a docuseries intended to illuminate the sport once described by Sylvester Stallone as “like trying to play golf during an earthquake,” with cameras trailing the senior-but-“not-working” royal throughout his stint on the East Coast.

The Duchess of Sussex on Friday.Photo: Yaroslav Sabitov / PA Images / Getty Images

But back to Meghan, who may have been in Miami this week, but whose wardrobe still very much said: Why yes, I am the American Riviera Orchard founder, please do ask to try my jams and jellies, but don’t get them on my ivory silk-hemp. After years of wearing points-for-trying fashion, the Duchess has, in recent months, been switching things up, which some have attributed to her friendship with stylist Jamie Mizrahi (Jamie being the woman responsible for putting the Vuitton in Adele’s Vegas residency and taking Jennifer Lawrence’s wardrobe from “Kentucky-raised everywoman” to Kendall Roy baseball caps and cashmere swaddling).

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex on Friday.Photo: Yaroslav Sabitov / PA Images / Getty Images

Meghan’s divot-stomping attire for the match came courtesy of Heidi Merrick, specifically the “California lifestyle” brand’s Ginger dress and its Santa Barbara sunglasses (precisely zero points to anyone sensing a theme here), paired with accessories that have become Markle mainstays: Aquazzura’s Purist pumps and a studded Valentino Garavani bag. It’s her vintage Chanel earrings, though, that lifted the look into “diet quiet luxury” territory thanks to their lack of a CC logo. Let’s hope that, in further appearances, this aesthetic extends further than Meghan’s earlobes; if I’m going to learn what a “chukka” is, I’d at least like to look at some archival Chanel while I’m at it.

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