CRAFTY COUNTESS

02.29.12

Mail Order Queen

The Duchess of Cornwall took a leaf out of Kate’s book by wearing a cheap and cheerful dress purchased from a mail-order catalog to a charity reception she was hosting last night, boasting, ‘They've got a sale on,’ when complimented on her dress.

Usually it’s Kate who’s grabbing the headlines for being the royal sashaying about in frocks from mainstream retailers. But now Camilla Parker-Bowles is showing that two can play at that game.

At a charity reception last night in support of the Women of the World festival at London's Southbank which will feature performances from female artists such as Annie Lennox and Sinead O'Connor, the Duchess of Cornwall beat Kate at her own game by wearing a £129 navy wool shirt dress from Artigiano, which sells women's fashion through a mail-order catalogue.

Camilla clearly shares the famously frugal ways of Queen Elizabeth, who keeps wrapping paper from one Christmas to the next. When complimented on her outfit she replied, ''They've got a sale on at the moment.''

Fashion designer Amanda Wakeley was among the guests and praised Camilla's wardrobe choice. She said: "It is all about supporting women but I just think she looks incredibly elegant."