17
Mar 11

Celebrating a greater meaning of life: Interview with Royal Photographer Steen Brogaard

SteenBrogaard2.jpgRoyal photographer Steen Brogaard taught himself the art of photography as a young man on the streets of Copenhagen “fighting for justice”. After several years as a “self-proclaimed ninja” and underground photographer, Brogaard landed a job as a press photographer for one of the most read Danish Magazines Billed Bladet. The young talented artist entered the Royal scene in 1992, when he became Crown Prince Frederik’s personal photographer. He later became Prince Joachim’s photographer of choice for private and public events. Other notable clients include, among many others, Danish National Television DR, Danish television TV2, Hello Magazine, Nordisk Film, LIFE Magazine, Unicef and WHO.

BB: Steen, why did you decide to go into photography? What’s your story?

SB: The time is the early 80s. It’s recession, no future, youth occupying empty houses and fighting in the streets, anti-apartheid demonstrations, the art into the streets not on museums.

In the center of Copenhagen I had established a darkroom in the basement of Greenpeace Denmark’s headquarters. The deal was that the rent be paid with photography.

I had my share of high speed inflatables. Working with wanna-be journalists, -layouters, -printers and -photographers who work to publish the weekly underground-paper “København”. Everything was very anti-establishment.

Imagine a tall, slender guy, always dressed in a black coverall and an earring of gold, glasses John Lennon-like. That was me, a self-proclaimed ninja from the provinces now fighting for justice and exposing the hypocrisy of the bourgeois. At least – this is how I saw myself, truly believing that my camera would take me to the epicenter of power, where the new world was born.

I had just quit university. A six week study to Sri Lanka, at the age of 20, had shown me the beauty of photography and made it impossible to return to the books.

The new world was never born and my friends all left “København” to become real journalists, photographers, and so on. Eventually I got an internship at the glossy magazine Billed Bladet. The internship taught me to tie a tie, and I got a few connections and a glimpse of a world of celebrities.

BB: Can you expand on your caption “Tales through photography”?

SB: I have always loved to tell stories. At school, my papers were always read to the class. I’ve just changed my tool from pen to camera. The catch-line is a promise that I try to have each and every one of my photographs to give a hint of a bigger story.

BB: Where is your photographic art exhibited?

SB: Right now I have my exhibition Tales From The Top Of Europe somewhere on the way to Brazil and a similar set on it’s way to Shanghai later this year. I just concluded a winter-depression-exhibition Sub-stans, currently exhibited in a gallery in Denmark. And of course the most current work is at show at my sister-site mosthigh.dk (named after a song by Jimmy Page and Robert Plant).

BB: At what point in your career did you become a photographer for the Royal family? How did they “discover” you?

SB: I first “met” the Crown Prince, when I was sent to Skagen (Danish jetset resort), when working for Billed Bladet in the late 80s, to cover his holiday. I remember his haunted look, when he saw us coming over the hill to spoil his volleyball-game. I didn’t feel comfortable by this invading of privacy and  promised myself not to do that ever again. Hmm.

I think he will say that I have haunted him a lot ever since :-) – but it has been by invitations! After my time on Billed Bladet, a friend of mine urged me to send my portfolio to the court, as she knew the Crown Prince was looking for his own photographer. I really didn’t want to get involved; it was too big, too frightening. But she didn’t take no for an answer – I sent my portfolio and next time I met the Crown Prince was in New York, making my first photographs of him with his consent.

BB: What about photography do you love most?

SB: To meet people, get in touch, talk – and suddenly you’re there, not exactly behind their masks, but you see somehow, who they really are. Or could be… To take that picture and to show it to them afterward.

BB: As a preferred photographer of the royal family, you presumably spend a lot of time with them. Is it pure business or did you get to know them personally during the process?

SB: I don’t think you can make personal pictures of people without getting to know them – or us getting to know each other. You give and you take. You deal with trust. Royals have cameras pointed at them everyday. The very least you can do is to try to make their time worth their while, have lot of laughs and get the job done.

BB: Do you use assistants when you take your photos?

SB: It depends on the job. At large, official photo sessions, such as a christening, where the whole family participate, I use a couple of assistants. Other shootings are more intimate. I try to keep it as simple as possible and prefer to work all by myself if it’s possible. My assistants have been photographers from my studio and interns. People I trust 100%, some of them well-reputable photographers themselves.

BB: What sort of techniques do you use when you take photographs of members of the royal family? Do you take a large number of photos and pick the best? Do you give them instructions?

SB: Actually there’re not many instructions to give, as the royal family is very professional in their attitude towards photography.

I talk a lot, and I try not to stumble over any cables! The time schedule is often very tight and I honestly don’t think of how many exposures I make, I move around a lot. Some sessions are more formal than others – usually I want the session to go with the flow, so to speak.

BB: Do you think it is more difficult to be a photographer for the Royal family than being a photographer more generally?

SB: Every time you make a photo of the royal family you make a photo of an icon. So you’re well ahead even before you start shooting. The surroundings and your models are beautiful, so why getting stressed? Hmm.

Each photo I make is a battle, like catching a ball. You never know from where the ball will come. Will you still catch the ball? If not – thousands of people will see your mistake, including all your customers. And your mother. Thus the pressure of expectations is much worse compared to on a normal session. Still, I find myself enjoying the fuzz more and more during the years. The fear isn’t that overwhelming anymore.

BB: What has been one of the most rewarding photo sessions with the Royal family?

SB: Waiting with newborn Princess Isabella. She’s sleeping, and I have been there for hours. There’s no one around. Suddenly she awakes and looks right into my camera. It’s like she sees the world for the very first time. And I am not out of film…

BB: You have taken pictures of the royal twins and their older siblings. Is it difficult to take pictures of babies and children?

SB: There is no such thing as an easy picture! The thing with children is you can’t rush them. You have to play by their rules.

BB: Most of your photos of the Royal family appear to be portraits and non-action shots. Do you also take action shots of the Royal family?

SB: I have always tried to work action and the unsuspected into my formal shots. From time to another I follow the royals abroad, where I work in the field together with my coll
eagues from the press. Apart from the adventures of being on the road this gives great pictures, where the unsuspected element defines the decisive moment.

BB: Can you give an example of a photo you are especially proud of or happy with?

SB: I made a shot for a book, where the Crown Prince is getting dressed. I feel it’s a photo of a man taking on his destiny.

BB: What do you think countries, like America, that are not a monarchy are missing out on? What’s the great thing about monarchies? Are the members role models for the country’s families?

SB: The Danish royal family is a carrier of Denmark’s history through 1000 years. It’s about continuity and heritage. One must remember that the royals can only be royal, if they understand that balance between intimacy and distance. If not, then they are vulnerable in the role they should play. They should be role models, despite not having the same terms as we do. They can not choose their religion, their job or their spouse (without permission of the government), these three things is something we all take for granted. The royals are actually extras in a theater, where the population sets the stage, and if we ask them to go left and jump, they are expected to ask: How high?

BB: Other Danish-Americans are frequently emailing me to share the fact that they, too, are big fans of the Royal family. Why do you think the Royal Danish family is so popular?

SB: I think the Danish Royal family manages to keep a balance between being formal and informal. Perhaps in this fast changing world it’s comforting to know, that some things remain the same. I remember the Crown Prince saying in an interview that the Crown Prince is forever, meaning that his title isn’t bound to him as a person. In celebrating the royal family we somehow celebrate a greater meaning of life. Life that goes on for generations even though we as individuals all have to pass.

BB: What are your dreams for the future?

SB: I just started reading Susan Sontag’s book On Photography. I can’t really tell yet if it is discouraging me or if it makes my passion for photography grow. I don’t believe my camera will change the world or take me to the epicenter of power anymore. Instead I focus on making pictures, saying – Look – this is also part of our world, isn’t it great/sad/fantastic/ depressing? Or saying – look – what if the world is like this?


14
Jan 11

The royal twins meet the world

danish-babies.jpgThis afternoon the world finally saw the Danish royal twins. At 3:35 pm Crown Prince Frederik and his wife Crown Princess Mary entered the foyer of the Danish National Hospital, Rigshospitalet, with the babies in their arms.

150 reporters and press photographers from all over the world met the happy couple with well wishes, questions and flashing cameras. The 38-year old Australia-born princess proudly carried her sleeping baby prince through the crowd of admiring onlookers. The little sleeping beauty rested comfortably in the arms of Mary’s husband.

Frederik told the press that after the baby prince was born, he was put on his mother’s tummy. Mary held his little hand while she gave birth to his sister, who saw the light of day 30 minutes after her brother. Since the twins were born, the young royal family, which is now a family of six, has been in a bubble of happiness, Mary said.

Even though a Cesarean is the method of choice for many twin parents, Mary proudly announced that she never had considered a Cesarean. It was a completely natural childbirth, or actually two births, as the Crown Prince pointed out.

During the hospital visit, the royal couple had worked hard on synchronizing the twins. It is important for twins to have the same eating and sleep schedule, otherwise breastfeeding becomes an impossible task. The Australian beauty added that there are noticeable differences in the temperaments of the babies. The princess is calmer than the baby boy, she said and smiled.

A reporter recalled that Frederik had told the press that he was prepared to have more children. “Did I really say that?”, Frederik innocently asked and laughed. “We have our hands full now”, Mary added and laughed too.

At 3:52 the couple thought it was time to head home. Everyone had expected them to have a driver but the young couple fastened their babies on the backseat and then entered the driver’s seat and passenger seat in the front and took off to the castle.


14
Jan 11

The royal twins are going home this afternoon

RoyalFamily.jpgThis afternoon the world will be able to see the Royal Danish twins for the first time. The family of six, including Crown Prince Frederik, Crown Princess Mary, big brother Christian, big sister Isabella and the baby twins, will be united today as one big family when the babies and their mother, the 38-old Australia-born princess, return home.

Before disappearing behind the walls of the castle, however, the Royal family will make a media appearance in the foyer of the Danish National Hospital, Rigshospitalet, where the twins and their mother have been recovering since the twins were born Saturday morning. While the babies were big for twins, they were born a little too early and were therefore kept in the hospital slightly longer than usual. The only reported complication was jaundice, which is quite common in all newborn babies.

This is the first time since the middle ages that twins are born into the Danish Royal family. We also have to go several generations back to find a Danish Royal successor with more than three children. Frederik’s grandfather and his wife had three girls, Margrethe, Benedikte and Anne Marie. Queen Margrethe and her husband Prince Henrik were blessed with two boys, Crown Prince Frederik and his younger brother Joachim. In the 19th century Christian IX and his large flourishing family served as compensation in the mind of the Nation when Denmark lost a part of Jutland to Germany in 1864. Since then the Royal family has been the ideal role model for Danish families.

When the baby twins return home this afternoon, two small beds will be ready for them in their own room at Amalienborg, the castle where the Queen, her husband Prince Henrik and the royal couple live. With four children, the Australia-born princess and her prince will need a bigger car. Several companies have already offered the couple a free luxury family car. The company Andersen and Martini have promised them a Saab 9-4X. But the model is not released until August, so the company may provide the family with a Cadillac Escalade. All members of the Royal family have received free luxury cars as gifts. Prince Joachim and his wife Marie received an Cadillac BLS Diesel, and Crown Princess Mary was offered a Saab 9-3 Aero Cabriolet as a wedding gift.


08
Jan 11

Naming the Royal Twins

PrincessMaryWithFrederikPregnant.jpgWhen announcing the birth of his baby twins outside the Danish National Hospital, Rigshospitalet, on January 8, 2011, Crown Prince Frederik jokingly said that they hadn’t decided on a name for the little ones but since he had heard that his twin son was born on Elvis’ birthday, we could call him Elvis for now.

According to tradition, the names of royal babies are not announced until their christening, three months after their birth. So, the excitement will last a few months. It is, however, highly unlikely that the royal couple will name their baby son Elvis.

The couple’s oldest son, prince Christian, had to be traditionally named as he was first born and hence first in line of succession after his father. Tradition has it that boys who are first in line of succession are named Frederik or Christian in an alternating pattern. Thus far girls who are first in line of succession have been named Margrethe.    

As Crown Princess Mary grew up in Australia, it is likely that the royal couple will choose English or Australian names for their twin babies. In 2009 the most popular names for baby boys in Australia were: 1. Jack, 2. Lachlan, 3. Cooper, 4. William, 5. Joshua, 6. Thomas, 7. Oliver, 8. Riley, 9. Noah, 10. Max, 11. James, 12. Ethan, 13. Aiden, 14. Liam, 15. Jackson, 16. Lucas, 17. Alexander, 18. Oscar, 19. Charlie, 20. Connor, and the most popular names for baby girls were: 1. Isabella, 2. Olivia, 3. Lily, 4. Chloe, 5. Emily, 6. Charlotte, 7. Ella, 8. Ava, 9. Amelia, 10. Sophie, 11. Sienna, 12. Mia, 13. Grace, 14. Ruby, 15. Zoe, 16. Isabelle, 17. Madison, 18. Emma, 19. Matilda,  20. Georgia. The royal couple’s oldest daughter is named Isabella, which explains the popularity of the name in 2009.

The Crown Prince and Princess, however, are also unlikely to pick their names from the popular lists. One factor that may play a role when choosing a name is whether the name has occurred in the English royal family. If forced to guess, I would say that Canute, Geoffry, Oliver and Timothy, traditional British royal names, may be on the list of names the couple considers for their baby prince, whereas Anne, Caroline, Catherine and Victoria, also traditional British royal names, may be on the list of potential names for their youngest daughter.

The most likely name for Mary’s little girl, however, is Henrietta. The Crown Princess’s mother Henrietta “Etta” Clark Donaldson died on November 20, 1997, when Mary was only 25 years old. Her mother never knew that her youngest daughter would become a real princess. Naming the new little princess after her grandmother would be a beautiful tribute to the memory of Mary’s mother.

The Danish Royal family does not have a last name. When a last name is required, royal women go by Regina, which means queen, and the royal men go by Rex, which means king. When Frederik met his princess during the Olympics in Sydney in 2000, he modestly introduced himself as “Fred”. The now 38-year old royal beauty says that she had no idea that the handsome young man before her was a real prince.


08
Jan 11

Crown Princess Mary has given birth to twins, a boy and a girl

MaryRed.jpgCrown Princess Mary gave birth to her twins babies this morning on January 8, 2011. The first little baby to meet the world was a little boy, who weighed in at a grand 2674 grams and measured no less than 47 cm. Then a little girl saw the light of day. She weighed 2574 grams and was 46 cm tall. Very impressive measures for twin  babies. The 38-year old Australian beauty had been admitted to the hospital early this morning. Her husband Crown Prince Frederik was sitting by his wife’s side throughout the labour.

Frederik announced the arrival of the new prince and princess outside the Danish National Hospital, Rigshospitalet, in Copenhagen. Both mother and children are doing well, he said. Journalists and press photographers from all over the world were present to interview the happy father. The press had literally been waiting by the phone for days to be ready for the birth.

During the Crown Prince’s official appearance in front of the hospital, the press asked if the royal couple had thought of any names for the two little guys. Frederik responded that they were still considering names but that he had heard that the birthday was also Elvis’. “So for now, we can call the little Prince Elvis”, he added with a smile.

The royal twins will be fourth and fifth in Denmark’s line of succession after their father, their brother Christian, five, and their sister, Isabella, who is three.


17
Sep 10

The creation of a princess: hair styles

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During the last ten years Crown Princess Mary has had a lot of different hair styles. How you wear your hair and your choice of hair color signal a lot about your personality and your particular mood on any given occasion.

The princess has changed her hair color on different occasions from her natural dark brown to chocolate brown and copper red. She also changes its style, frequently.

At official functions European royals dress glamorously, complete with sashes and tiaras. The Australia-born princess is seen wearing a short-sleeved silver-hued satin gown and one of her favourite evening hairstyles, in which most of her hair is beautifully gathered up at the nape of her neck.

This particular hairstyle conveys elegance and high-class. It also creates a sharp contrast to the Danish royal’s everyday look, with her hair falling straight over her shoulders.

Though Mary is rarely seen with curls, it does occasionally happen.

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Curls convey warmth, sweetness and openness.

They can also signal a classic look, as is seen in the picture above right, in which Mary’s face is surrounded by Forties-style cascading soft waves, with a side parting.

The Crown Princess’s sculpted hair is reminiscent of the favourite hairstyles of Ava Gardner, Lauren Bacall, Deanna Durbin and Marlene Dietrich in the Forties and early Fifties.

Mary’s hair, which is naturally straight, is in a perfect starting condition for the sculpted waves of that time period. In the picture above, Mary’s mocha-shaded makeup and golden-hued outfit nicely match her chocolate brown hair and fair skin tone.

To avoid frizz, Forties women with natural curls often needed to straighten their hair to achieve this sculpted look. Straightening and sculpting hair was a time consuming job. “I can’t go out tonight. I have to wash my hair” used to be a legitimate excuse for not going on a date. Washing and styling one’s hair every day would quite simply be too time consuming.

Starting from straight hair, modern women can achieve the crown princess’ Forties look with hot rollers and hair spray.

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The ponytail is one of the Danish royal’s favorite hairstyles for official visits, work and outdoor activities. Mary’s ponytails are usually set slightly higher than the traditional Fifties girly ponytail. This is also known as the “half-up, half-down” ponytail.

Ponytails send off a signal of self-composure, grace and serenity. The slightly higher setting conveys energy, youthfulness and fortitude. The higher the setting, the younger the look. A super-high ponytail can literally make you look 10 years younger.

The ponytail is a newer phenomenon. Before the 20th century, it would be rare to see a grown woman outside the house with a straight ponytail. Now, this ponytail is more popular than ever. You can wear it on the treadmill and then later that same day go to a posh restaurant without changing hairstyle.


17
Sep 10

The creation of a princess: the Danish language

One of the hardest tasks that awaited Australia-born Mary Donaldson was learning the Danish language. While French has been the language spoken in Frederik‘s childhood home, tradition dictates that new royalty from foreign countries must learn to speak Danish.

Mary has excelled at this difficult task. She no doubt deserves an A+ for her language skills. Her Danish pronunciation is impeccable, and her Australian accent is almost unnoticeable.

All of the members of the Danish Royal House who grew up speaking a different language have done extremely well in this respect. Alexandra, Countess of Frederiksborg, the former wife of Frederik’s younger brother Prince Joachim, and Princess Marie, who is now married to Joachim, both speak the Danish language fluently.

Queen Margrethe II‘s husband Prince Henrik has a strong French accent but his vocabulary is impressive, showing that he is nonetheless a fluent speaker. “It’s not pronunciation or accent that shows how well one knows a language but vocabulary”, said Princess Marie to the Danish television station DR1, “his vocabulary is impressive, very impressive”.

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France-born Princess Marie (left) and Crown Princess Mary (right), who are strikingly similar in appearance, defended their father-in-law’s Prince Henrik’s knowledge of the Danish language in the Danish television program DR1′s documentary The Royal House.


17
Sep 10

The creation of a princess: the sun campaign

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The always lovely Princess Mary’s healthy lifestyle has also given rise to changes in the princess’s skin. When the crown prince and the Australian beauty first met, Mary’s skin was quite normal and tanned.

Now a healthy lifestyle and good skincare have made her skin stand out as perfectly clear and snow white. Mary’s  complexion is not simply a fairytale fashion statement, but also one of the ways in which she speaks up in support of the Danish Cancer Foundation & Society, an organization which aims to support the prevention and treatment of cancer. She is furthermore a patron of The Danish sun safety campaign ‘Reduce Your Sun between 12 & 3 pm’.

The Australian-born princess created the foreword to the movie I Want to Live. The film tells the story of the struggle eight cancer patients went through to survive. In the future every cancer suffer will receive a free copy of the movie from Danish Cancer Foundation & Society.

In May 2010, the princess helped kick-off the foundation’s Anti-Sun campaign, right in time for bikini season. Being Australian born, Mary knows the importance of protecting one’s skin from the sun. Cancer of the skin is the most frequent form of the disease in Denmark, affecting 80,000 Danes every day and killing one person every two days.

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Over the years a tanned image has become a trend in Denmark, and many Danes have enjoyed years of unprotected exposure to the damaging rays of the sun, which has caused a radical increase in incidences of skin cancer over the last 30 years. Over 8,000 Danes are diagnosed with malignant types of skin cancer every year. The trend is now changing. Sunburned skin is out and natural skin color is in.

The UV rays are most dangerous in Australia because Australia is located right under the hole in the ozone. Mary says she uses a factor 20 sun lotion. “Of course it’s nice to get a glow, but if it results in serious illness and ultimately death, it’s not so beautiful”, said the Danish royal to the Danish newspaper BT. “I haven’t gotten sunburn since I was 16 or 17 years old,” she added.

The Australian SunSmart campaign inspired the Danish campaign and the the Danish Cancer Foundation & Society and the Australian Cancer Societies maintain an ongoing, close connection.


17
Sep 10

The creation of a princess: body changes

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Besides having gone from an Australian business woman with little interest in fashion to a style icon reminiscent of Jackie Kennedy, Crown Princess Mary of Denmark has undergone many other changes. Since her first visits to Denmark from 2001 to 2003 she has shed several pounds.

The Australia-born princess is here seen above taking a stroll in 2002. Her style is classic and accentuates her beautiful female curves.

Mary’s body now shows signs of regular exercise. It is well-balanced and toned.

The Australian beauty is seen below enjoying a summer day at the sea with children and friends. Her body is admirably lean and athletic.

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Soon her slim look will temporarily change, as the royal couple are expecting twins. On March 17 last year the Danish magazine Billedbladed reported that Crown Prince Frederik and his wife had been seen making several secret trips to the Danish national hospital Rigshospitalet, where the couple’s two younger children Prince Christian and Princess Isabella were born. They were seen leaving the part of the hospital that hosts the Juliane Marie Center - the hospital’s birth clinic - smiling and hand in hand.

Scandinavia’s largest bookmaker Unibet was so convinced that the crown princess would give birth before January 1, 2010 that they offered 1.5 odds. Now it has finally been confirmed that the 37-year old is pregnant. She is due in January 2011.


19
May 10

The making of a princess: 2000-2010

The fairytale began on September 16 2000 when Mary Donaldson, an ordinary Australian girl, met Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark at Merivale’s Slip Inn in Sydney during the Summer Olympics.

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Three years later the Australian beauty and the crown prince decided they wanted to spend the rest of their lives together. On October 2003 after a long-distance relationship, a short stay in Paris and a number of private visits to Denmark, Mary and Frederik got engaged.

During the ten years from the couple’s first meeting until today, Mary underwent a drastic change from a sporty, sun-tanned sales director to crown princess, fashion icon, mother of two and charity activist. She is director of the Mary Foundation, an organization focused on improving the lives of children, adults and families who are socially excluded.

The changes the princess has undergone during the ten years are astonishing. Her hair has been coloured and restyled, she has undergone a body and skin transformation, her posture is more regal, and her clothing has become more classic and elegant with a clear historic influence.

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The Australia-born princess’ overall look is now reminiscent of the designs of Jacqueline Kennedy, Yves Saint Laurent and Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel. She is no longer the neighbour’s sporty daughter but a fashion icon. “It is important that I look smart and elegant and appropriately dressed for every occasion. I’m still developing my style to fit with my new role”, Mary said in an interview with fashion magazine Vogue.

At official functions members of the Danish royalty are dressed glamorously, complete with sashes and tiaras. But they also go to work, to the gym, and the park.

When Mary leaves the Kancelli house to go work she wears clothes worth a total of 25,000 Danish Crowns, or approximately $5,000, says stylist Mette Louise Just Kryger, and this doesn’t include the costs of her fur coats. The Danish royal is frequently seen wearing Louboutin shoes, Gucci sunglasses and Prada handbags.

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Over the years Mary has developed her own style. Like other royals - such as Crown Princess Letizia of Spain, Princess Alexandra of Greece, and Monaco’s Charlotte Casiraghi - the Australian fashion-icon has featured on best-dressed lists the world over.

A team of stylists helps Mary choose clothes, accessories, hair style and skin products. Mary’s stylist and friend Anja Camilla Alajdi gives her advice about clothes and accessories and make-up artist, hairstylist and friend Soren Hedegaard gives her advice about make-up and hairstyles. Meanwhile facialist Ole Henriksen advises her on skin care.

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All three are highly sought-after fashion stylists. Anja Alajdi is a partner of jewellery-designer Marianne Dulong, Soren Hedegaard has worked on numerous television projects as a make-up artist, and Ole Henriksen, who lives in Los Angeles, has a world-renowned spa and skin-care line. Besides royalty his clientele includes celebrities such as Renee Zelweger, Cher, Kylie Minogue and Charlize Theron.

Though fashion houses frequently send new pieces to the Danish royal palace, Mary’s favorite designers are Danish. The names she turns to include By Malene Birger, Heartmade, Stories by Rikke Mai, and jewellery by Marianne Dulong.

When choosing her outfits she often takes inspiration from the past. On the day she announced her engagement she wore a simple and elegant dress - no doubt inspired by the designs of Yves Saint Laurent. She could easily have been mistaken for a young Jacqueline Kennedy.

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Mary’s style is characterized by pointed shoes, tailored suits, wide-brimmed hats and stockings in a natural shade. Mary’s engagement shoes were pointed and accompanied by transparent stockings.

The layered look is also one of the staples in Mary’s wardrobe. Mary is seen in one of the above pictures in a light pink silk top and a long dark blue shirt in the characteristic layered look. Her long hair is elegantly tied behind her neck to make the top and her beautiful face stand out.

At Frederik’s 40th birthday party (bottom photo) Mary wore a Sixties-style dusty-red dress with sequin flowers and open-toe stillettos. The dress was designed by Matthew Williamson.

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