Has Meghan Markle Racked Up $1 Million In Clothing Costs Since Becoming A Royal?

Each week, we apply our smell test to the new batch of royal rumours to tell you what’s true and what stinks worse than rotten kippers.

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Meghan Markle attends The Prince of Wales' 70th Birthday Patronage Celebration held at Buckingham Palace on May 22, 2018
Meghan Markle at the Prince of Wales’ 70th Birthday Patronage Celebration. Photo, Chris Jackson/Getty Images.

The rumour: Meghan Markle has racked up $1 million in clothing costs since becoming a royal

Where you heard it: Entertainment Tonight
The report: This story came to ET by way of royal biographer Katie Nicholl, who took it upon herself to tally Markle’s post-wedding wardrobe expenses. More than half of the total was down to the $440,000 cost of her Givenchy wedding gown, plus an additional $157,000 on gown #2 by Stella McCartney. Another $18,000 on that white belted dress the Duchess wore for her first solo gal’s getaway with the Queen, $5,000 on that flowy blue Oscar de la Renta that made everyone think she is pregnant, $4,000 on the shoulder-exposing Prada — and we haven’t even gotten to the hats. Point is, per Nicholl, the Duchess’s taste for couture is adding up faster than you can say “Haven’t you ever heard of Zara?” But what’s even more interesting is Nicholl’s revelation on who would be fitting the bill: “It does fall, now that she is married into the royal family, to the Prince of Wales … to cover the cost of her working royal wardrobe.”
The smell test: Nicholl is a seasoned reporter known for meticulous research. So if she says a million, we’re not about to argue. The real question here is what does Prince Charles think of his daughter-in-law’s pricey sartorial preferences? Nicholl claims that the revenue gained via the global fascination with all things Markle more than covers the cost of a little couture. But that doesn’t mean this type of “let them eat cake” approach to spending won’t have consequences.
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The rumour: Prince Harry rejected Meghan Markle’s attempt to hold his hand in front of the Queen

Where you heard it: Express
The report: Remember last week when the Duchess of Sussex sat on a tuffet (okay, fine — a chair) and forgot to assume the correct leg positioning? Click back to last week’s rumour report for a full assessment of the Duchess Slant “scandal,” or just keep reading. Because if there’s one thing we know for certain by now it’s that every few days brings a new instance of alleged rule breaking by the newest royal. This week, Express is one of many pubs reporting on how MM “tried to reach out for [Harry’s] hand,” while attending the Young Leaders Reception at Buckingham Palace only to find her PDA attempt “abruptly rejected.”
The smell test: In the strictest sense, this rumour seems pretty sound. If you watch the video here you can see how she does seem to dangle her hand in an attempt to clasp his, and he does seem to kind of shut it down — in the most polite and loving way possible. Still, “rejected” (or rather “REJECTED,” as the Express headline states) seems like a pretty strong word to describe a pretty gentle interaction. More like: “Prince Harry subtly reminds his beloved wife that Granny isn’t much for hand-holding.”

The rumour: The royal PR chief is resigning … because of Thomas Markle

Where you heard it: The Daily Mail
The report: DM columnist/royal insider Charlotte Griffiths doesn’t quite come out and say that the royal family’s PR chief Sally Osman is leaving her post based on a massive botching of all things Thomas Markle (Meghan’s dad, for those who haven’t been following the year’s most royally adjacent trash fire). Instead, the veteran columnist intersperses details about Osman’s retirement (“a dramatic changing of the guard,” she calls it), with a series of Markle Sr.’s notable misfires (the staged paparazzi photos, the paid interview with ITV), and leaves us to connect the dots. “She has faced a difficult time as Kensington Palace tried to manage PR calamities around the marriage of Prince Harry to Meghan Markle,” Griffith notes.
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The smell test: It makes sense that someone’s got to take the fall for the complete botching of Meghan’s dad and the entire clan of exploitive, fame-seeking Markle relatives. And the timing of Osman’s departure does suggest that she is that person — particularly since we’re talking about a career publicist. Either Osman is out because of a failure surrounding the royal wedding, or she doesn’t understand optics, in which case she should be out anyway.

The rumour: Oprah was worried about upstaging Meghan Markle at the royal wedding

Where you heard it: Page Six
The report: This P6 story come straight from the latest issue of British Vogue, in which cover girl Winfrey dishes on hot topics from her rumoured presidential run (“it would kill me”), to the #MeToo movement (“Isn’t it remarkable that we’re waking up?”), to her attendance at the year’s most significant social event. Turns out the pink dress she ended up wearing was not her intended outfit, but instead a last minute sub-in after the cream dress she had commissioned came back looking more white than creamy. “I Googled, ‘Can you wear white to a wedding?’ Answer: ‘No, don’t risk it,’” Oprah told Vogue, noting how McCartney’s team worked “round the clock” to create the backup frock.
The smell test: Note that Oprah never uses the word “upstaged,” and probably never meant to imply it. What really stinks here though is a 64-year-old woman who doesn’t know the rules around white — sorry, “cream” — at a wedding.