Monaco's Princess Gabriella Channels Her Grandmother Princess Grace in Floral Dress
Grace's iconic dress was a last-minute decision on what to wear when she first met her future husband
Aside from her lace and pearl wedding gown, Princess Grace of Monaco‘s famous floral dress may be her most iconic. After all, the movie star-turned-royal was a magazine cover girl in the outfit – which was also what she wore when Grace met her future husband.
Now, Princess Gabriella is taking a cue from her stylish grandmother.
The adorable 4-year-old royal stepped out with her parents, Prince Albert and Princess Charlene of Monaco, and twin brother Prince Jacques on Friday to open the “Princess Charlene walk” at the Monte-Carlo Complex. She wore a black floral dress, spicing up her outfit with a leather jacket and sunglasses.
The flowery skirt was reminiscent of Princess Grace’s well-known ensemble, which she wore on the cover of the March 1955 issue of McCall’s magazine.
She would wear the dress again for another special occasion – her first meeting with Prince Rainier III.
Oscar winner Olivia de Havilland previously told PEOPLE about how she met then-Grace Kelly on a train in France and her husband suggested that Grace and Rainier meet while they were at the Cannes Film Festival, to which the actress agreed.
However, the day of their meeting didn’t go as expected.
Waking late, Kelly washed her hair before discovering a labor strike had cut off the city’s electricity. No hair dryer, makeup lights or iron. With two cars waiting downstairs outside The Carlton hotel, Kelly pulled her hair back, arranged it with flowers, put on her one unwrinkled outfit (the thick silk taffeta “Easy To Sew” floral model she’d worn a year earlier for McCall’s Patterns) and of course, finding the elevators without power, rushed down several flights of stairs.
A fender-bender with photographers who had been following her delayed them and when they eventually arrived at the palace, Rainier wasn’t there. When he finally arrived, he invited Kelly to see his 225-room palace. She said she’d already had the tour. Undeterred, he proposed they visit his private zoo. They walked ahead, speaking privately, in the garden. Paris-Match photographers quickly recorded their meeting before Kelly hurriedly rushed back to Cannes. During the return, she described the prince as “charming.”
“I guessed things had gone wonderfully well by Grace’s manner upon returning from her presentation to Rainier,” said de Havilland. “When she took her place at the head of the receiving line at the American reception, instead of offering her hand for a handshake, Grace extended her hand as if offering it to be kissed. She was in a state of enchantment.”
After their initial meeting, Kelly and Rainier began a private correspondence. Despite rumors, they largely succeeded in keep their developing romance secret until Rainier sailed for America, proposing seven months later during Christmas.
And the rest is royal history.