Pick a lady, pick a royal family, no matter who you choose there is no doubt to be some debate about how much she is spending on her wardrobe. The Duchess of Cambridge is a favourite for people to gawk at, yet why do we do it? It is her money to spend on the clothing she wishes. Are we envious of her good fortunes and wish we could have the same? Her outfits aren’t coming from the taxpayer, so other than lusting after the last pair of nude pumps she wore, the cost should not concern us.
Yet, here we are again, as 2017 ended costs of not only the Duchess of Cambridge’s outfits were tallied, but so were those of many other royal ladies. Kate didn’t even come in first, Queen Rania of Jordan had that pleasure. Even more so, hers are the only numbers that anyone should be worried about as it is believed Jordanian taxpayers fund her £ 237,549.16 (267,238.00 €) lavish closet.
UFO No More took the painstakingly difficult task of calculating all the total costs which all have exclusions due to custom outfits and some unidentified pieces. Queen Rania wore a total of 191 new pieces in 2017, with an average price tag of £1532.58 (1,724.12 €). To put that in perspective, an article in The Jordan Times put the average monthly salary at £471 plus the 7% tax rate. A three bedroom flat runs around £416 a month.
It would take the average Jordanian over three months to earn enough for just one piece if they had absolutely no expenses.
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The Duchess of Cambridge did come in second at £115166.97 (129,560.51€), beating out Crown Princess Mary of Denmark at £81663 (91,869.22 €). The difference with these two ladies is that the Duchy of Cornwall pays Kate’s clothing costs and Crown Princess Mary’s are funded by “personal savings” of Crown Prince Frederik from the family’s estimated $3 billion land holding worth and a parliamentary-approved allowance which does come from taxpayers. Meaning Prince Charles’ organic biscuits are paying for Kate’s love of LK Bennett compared to citizens trying to make ends meet.
The average monthly salary in Denmark is significantly higher at 24315 DKK or £2907. Crown Princess Mary’s average piece came in at £654, so it would take the taxpayer under a month to afford one of her items compared to the over three months in Jordan.
Queen Rania’s husband, King Abdullah II, has an estimated net worth of around $750 million from stocks and investments including a soccer team, his own vodka, restaurants and a Star Trek theme park. The Jordanian Royal Family is a constitutional monarchy, so the government will fund them, but why are no personal expenses used for the finer luxuries?
Information on how the Jordanian Royal Family spends their money is limited, but through research it is believed that taxpayer funded allowances pay for most, if not all, of personal effects like clothing. On 29 August 2011, “Jordan’s media commission prohibited local press outlets from publishing any news about the king or the royal family other than information circulated by the royal court” writes the Human’s Rights Watch.
The coverage may be few, but in a state where families struggle to pay for a roof over their head, education for their children and food, not to mention all the smaller costs, how is it that a Queen who prides herself on her work with the Jordanian and Palestinian people, then uses that money to pay her fashion obsession?