Recently I flew across the world from Sydney, Australia to Copenhagen, Denmark.
I left behind my husband, with a long to-do list and a freezer full of heat & eat meals; my 2 little boys, with extra cuddles and silly love cartoons to discover; and my usual sleep-deprived nights, due to the aforementioned boys and their nightmares about the evil mummy in Scooby Doo.
All in a bid to have a chat with a Princess.
I was hoping to corner her in the Ladies Room while she powdered her nose, and ask her a few burning questions, such as:
What do you wear when you’re just hanging at home in the palace with the kids?
Exactly how many frogs do you have to kiss before you meet a Prince?
And what were you wearing the night you met Fredrick?
I wrote some of the questions on my hand before I left.
Alas, HRH and I didn’t get to chat. But I did learn a a bunch of great things that are well worth sharing:
1. You need to be overt about letting a fellow countryman know there is another Australian in the house.
I thought my chances of meeting her would improve if Princess Mary recognised me as a fellow Australian. So I donned a divine dress by Alex Perry – who designs arguably Australia’s most glamorous dresses, for some of Australia’s most glamorous women such as Miranda Kerr, Dannii Minogue and Megan Gale.
Looking like a teapot, but feeling like a princess in my Alex Perry dress.
Instead, she walked straight by me.
Princess Mary, not sensing the subtle Australian vibes I was sending out.
For someone to recognise another Australian, you need to be more overt. Calling out “Aussie, Aussie Aussie!” so they can then respond in the traditional manner of “Oi, Oi Oi!” might work.
2. A Princess does not powder her nose during an event.
Despite attending the event at the Copenhagen City Hall for over 3 hours, Mary never went to the Ladies room. Clearly bladder control is a prerequisite for royalty – probably to prevent the Princess from being cornered by a mum from Australia wanting to chat about beauty tips.
The tightly scheduled evening did not allow for Royal rest breaks.
3. The no-photos at the table rule
At home, we’ve got a ‘No toys at the table’ rule to keep the kids focussed on the task at hand – eating.
Yet Princess Mary has gone one better – a ‘No photos during dinner’ rule.
These helpful little cards were politely perched our linen napkins.
If you’ve ever been snapped mid-bite while eating a slice of pizza, you’ll know why this rule is genius. I’m thinking of creating my own version for our next BBQ, with the hashtag #eatinstyle.
4. You can drink red wine while wearing white
On the night of the ECCO Walk in Style Awards, Mary was wearing a chic white suit by Danish designer Marlene Birger, teamed with black Prada pumps and a Georg Jensen ‘Moonlight Grapes’ ring. Her suit was pristine.
Yet during the dinner, while I was
staring at her casually glancing in her general direction, I saw her take a healthy gulp of red wine, and a huge bite of her main course – a meal that could almost have been designed by a suit-staining ninja.
Veal, beetroot, cherries, chocolate… a menu designed by a suit-staining ninja.
Yet her suit stayed as white as the Northern European snow.
Princess Mary pictured with ECCO Walk in Style Award winner Hadassah de Boer, post-meal. Suit still immaculate.
It made me realise that maybe taking deportment classes like she did would be a good investment, and could counter-balance the cost of dry cleaning an Alex Perry dress with chocolate sauce on it…
The cost of cleaning this is making me cry.
And the most significant learning of all…
5. We should all use our voice – no matter how big or small it is – to raise awareness about women’s issues, and how to deal with them.
The Walk in Style Awards were created by ECCO shoes to increase awareness of the challenges faced by some of the world’s most vulnerable women.
ECCO, known for making some of the world’s most comfortable shoes, aims to “make the world a more comfortable place to live,” according to its CEO Dieter Kasprzak. So ECCO used it’s corporate resources to create the Walk in Style Awards as a way to raise the profile of some important charitable projects, and to recognise the efforts of the inspirational women who help promote them.
“We believe the ECCO Walk in Style Award
and the projects chosen by these remarkable women can help raise awareness of some
very important women’s issues.”
ECCO CEO Dieter Kasprzak
This year’s winner, Hadassah de Boer (pictured above with Princess Mary), will present her chosen charity, Stichting Vluchteling, with the massive AU$40,000+ prize.
Stichting Vluchteling provides humanitarian aid and social support to refugees in Africa, Latin America and Eastern Europe, with a focus on women and young children.
One of the other charities that really stood out for me, Fundacja Rak’n’Roll Wygraj zycie, is the only organisation in the world dedicated to supporting women with cancer during pregnancy.
For a complete run-down of all six award nominees and the charities they support, click here.
Fashion and Royalty used to highlight important issues.
Attending the event, which used a glamorous backdrop of fashion and royalty to highlight these important causes, made me realise how important it is that we are all well informed about the different issues facing women around the world, and in our own countries too.
The glittering catwalk show featured avant-garde versions of ECCO shoes, and a performance by Danish pop-sensation Aura.
Acknowledging the obvious – that it’s pretty bloody hard to ‘navigate motherhood in style’ when you’re sick, suffering or underprivileged – it’s made me want to do what I can to use the increasingly wide-reaching audience of Fox in Flats to share tips, ideas and inspiration for how we can support those who need it, and be better informed about our own health and welfare.
To that end – inspired by the ECCO Walk in Style Awards – on Fox in Flats we’ll be regularly highlighting organisations that aim to educate, inform, and inspire us about women’s issues.
Because while we don’t all have the influence and pulling power of Princess Mary, I reckon that by working together and spreading the word online, we can make an impact in educating ourselves and others.
Hell, if it helps just one person then it’s worth it, right?!
Thanks to ECCO shoes for sending me to Copenhagen to the Walk in Style Awards, and for the inspiration to do what I can to make a difference locally.
Know of a charitable organisation that aims to educate, inform, and inspire about women’s issues? Please let us know in the Comments section below.
And since I never got the chance to ask Princess Mary: what were YOU wearing the night you met your partner?