Let's be honest. Life is hard right now. Sometimes all we want to do is escape for a little bit and watch the offspring of some of the most famous people on the planet strutting their stuff on family outings.
And one thing’s for sure: the children who make up the toddlerati and teenerati of European royals have already developed a distinct style.
Some are traditionalists, some are tomboys, some are trendy, some are chic. And together they make up mini fashion tribes delighting royal-watchers everywhere.
"It seems the royal kids around the world mimic the style of countries which they're from," UK fashion expert Simon Glazin says. "And they're really flying the fashion flags high."
Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis
Parents: Prince William and Kate, Duchess of Cambridge
When the future king and queen of England are your parents, only traditional threads will do. William and Kate have played it safe and stuck to the tried-and-tested style adopted by royals for decades – nothing over-the-top or out-there for the Cambridge tots.
This was evident once again when George and Charlotte made their debut at the royals’ annual Christmas Day outing.
It’s tradition for members of the Firm to walk from Queen Elizabeth’s Sandringham estate to St Mary Magdalene Church for the morning service, and the public brave the mid-winter weather from sunrise to see the passing blue-blooded brigade.
George and Charlotte were deemed old enough to join their mom and dad for the first time, much to the crowd’s delight. George walked with his father, the little boy solemn and smart in a navy blue coat that matched his dad’s. Completing the look were formal pants – only the second time he’s not worn shorts in public – and dark loafers.
Charlotte, who held her mom’s hand, wore a natty green double-breasted coat over black tights and buckle-up shoes – and as usual the pint-size princess stole the show.
When Charlotte dropped to a cute little curtsey in front of her great grandmother the queen everyone’s hearts melted.
The Cambridge kids’ Christmas Day outfits were typical of their style. George sticks to the royal staple of collared shirts, shorts and typically British shoes – either buckle-ups, loafers or plimsolls. Charlotte has yet to be seen in public in pants or shorts: dresses and skirts are the order of the day teamed with coats and cardigans in winter.
As for little Louis (20 months), he’s following in his big brother’s footsteps: button-up jerseys, shorts and typically British shoes.
The siblings also toe the line during appearances on the Buckingham Palace balcony at the annual Trooping the Colour ceremony.
Charlotte was pretty in a pink smock dress at last year’s event; George added a pair of gentleman braces to his collared shirt, while Kate pulled a royal-child staple out of the archives for the baby: Louis wore the same blue and white top his uncle Prince Harry wore on the palace balcony decades ago.
The kids’ outfits are usually a mix of pieces that favour British designers and high-street buys from the likes of Zara and H&M.
“They’ve chosen a traditional look because they’re a traditional family,” says designer Rachel Riley, who’s dressed George on several occasions. “The duke and duchess go for clothing that’s classic and timeless, rather than clothes that draw attention to them.”
And of course, Kate is a big fan of wardrobe recycling. During a trip to Poland in 2017, Charlotte wore a pair of red patent-leather shoes that once also belonged to Harry.
For the 2016 Trooping the Colour, George wore the same blue-trimmed Peter Pan collar shirt his father wore to Harry’s christening in 1984.
Tradition, thy name is Cambridge.
THE COOL KIDS
Princess Gabriella and Prince Jacques
Parents: Prince Albert and Princess Charlene of Monaco
Top marks for being on-point go to the trendy Monaco twins, who are often seen in colour-coordinated yacht-chic outfits or edgy leather jackets and jeans as befit their existence in Europe’s playground for the rich and famous.
“Gabriella and Jacques – the cool kids of France, very Dolce & Gabbana indeed!” UK fashion expert Simon Glazin says.
But the twins can also do traditional when the occasion demand it.
On Monaco Day, for example, Charlene dressed her daughter in a patriotic red dress and matching beret while her son donned a mini replica of his 61-year-old dad’s military outfit. The result: cuteness overload.
Mia & Lena Tindall and Savannah & Isla Phillips
Parents: Mike and Zara Tindall and Peter and Autumn Phillips
When your dad is a former rugby player and your mom is a top equestrian, running around a field in fancy clothes just won’t do.
Thankfully Mia and Lena, daughters of Mike and Zara – Princess Anne’s daughter – love a bit of rough and tumble and can be spotted hanging out at horsey events in shorts and T-shirts.
The practical style is also favoured by their cousins Savannah and Isla, whose American mom, Autumn, is also a horse-lover, as is their dad, Peter – but then he’s widely believed to be the queen’s favourite grandchild, and you can’t be that without loving horses and dogs.
The Tindall and Phillips kids are perfect replicas of their parents, fashion guru Simon Glazin says. “They take a more hands-on, outdoorsy approach – so it’s durable denims, practical shorts and sturdy trainers.”
THE PREPPY KIDS
Lady Louise Windsor and James Viscount Severn
Parents: Prince Edward and Sophie Countess of Wessex
She may only be a teen but Louise appears to be taking style cues from the older royal women including her mom, who’s known for her smart, sophisticated look.
During a visit to the zoo in Bristol, England, last year, Louise looked sweet in a pink floral skirt and white blouse, which she teamed with flats. Like her mom, she kept her sunnies perched on her head.
Louise is also said to be a fan of the quintessentially British brand Hobbs, known for its quality winter coats, which Kate also favours.
James favours preppy blazers and formal pants. During the zoo outing he channelled his dad in a pair of cream chinos, a smart navy jacket and blue shirt.
Edward (55) and Sophie (54) are determined to keep their kids as much out of the limelight as possible.
"They're going to have to go out and get a job and earn a living later on in life,” Sophie says. “And if they’ve had as normal a start in life they possibly can get, then hopefully that will stand them in good stead.”