STYLE EVOLUTION

Revisit Princess Diana’s Best Style Moments on What Would Have Been Her 58th Birthday

Diana And Harry Highgrove
Tim Graham

Princess Diana‘s legacy may forever now be dominated by her death in a car accident in Paris in 1997, but she’ll forever be known as a royal, a humanitarian and, of course, as a style icon—even and especially to this day, which would have been her 58th birthday. More than two decades after her death, the princess has been back to dominating headlines in large part thanks to another unexpected—and immediately beloved—adopted royal. We’re talking of course, about Meghan Markle, who married Diana’s son Prince Harry last year in a ceremony that saw the pair pay tribute after tribute to his late mother. Wherever you stand on whether or not Markle has been “channeling” Diana ever since, there’s no denying that she’s so far strayed from mimicking the moppy head of hair that Diana, née Spencer, had prior to marrying Prince Charles in 1981, nor the much more era-appropriate feathered look that came after it, prefacing her reign over the rest of the shoulder-padded decade as the ’80s’ leading style icon. Still, she never let hot pink get in the way of her devotion to the bright red that she wore on occasions ranging from state dinners to Prince Harry’s first day of school (and which Kate Middleton recently explicitly paid homage to). Pay your own homage to Diana with a look back at that day and the ’90s moments of skin-tight spandex shorts and glamorous Versace that followed, here.

1
December 1980

Princess Diana outside her flat in Coleherne Court, London, December 1980. Photo by Jayne Fincher/Princess Diana Archive/Getty Images.

2
February 1981

Princess Diana in a dress by Cojana with Prince Charles in the gardens of Buckingham Palace on the day they announced their engagement, February 1981. Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images.

3
May 1981

Princess Diana with Prince Charles at Craigowan Lodge on the Balmoral Estate, May 1981. Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images.

4
June 1981

Princess Diana at a polo match in Windsor after the Ascot races, June 1981. Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images.

5
April 1982

A pregnant Princess Diana during a trip to the Isles of Scilly, April 1982. Photo by Kypros/Getty Images.

6
June 1983

Princess Diana wearing the colors of Canada during a state visit to Edmonton, Alberta, June 1983. Photo by Bettmann/Getty Images.

7
June 1983
Princess Diana Archive

Princess Diana in a Smith’s Lawn sweater with Prince Charles at a polo meeting at Windsor, June 1983. Photo by Jayne Fincher/Princess Diana Archive/Getty Images.

8
October 1985

Princess Diana at the Melbourne airport, October 1985. Photo by Jayne Fincher/Getty Images.

9
1985

Princess Diana on holiday in the south of France, 1985. Photo by Anwar Hussein/WireImage.

10
May 1985

Princess Diana in a Bruce Oldfield dress during a visit to Venice, May 1985. Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images.

11
July 1986

Princess Diana outside Highgrove with her son Harry, July 1986. Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images.

12
August 1987

Princess Diana on holiday in Majorca, Spain, August 1987. Photo by Georges De Keerle/Getty Images.

13
November 1987

Princess Diana at a Berlin Opera House gala performance in a gown by Catherine Walker, November 1987. Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images.

14
November 1987

Princess Diana and Prince Charles at the Munich Opera House, November 1987. Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images.

15
October 1988

Princess Diana at a state reception in Melbourne, October 1988. Photo by Jayne Fincher/Princess Diana Archive/Getty Images.

16
November 1988

Princess Diana in a Catherine Walker gown at a dinner at the British Embassy in Paris during her official visit to France, November 1988. Photo by Georges De Keerle/Getty Images.

17
March 1989

Princess Diana in a Catherine Walker suit and a Philip Somerville hat in Kuwait City, United Arab Emirates during her official tour of the Gulf States, March 1989. Photo by Georges De Keerle/Getty Images.

18
March 1989

Princess Diana at St. Mary’s Hospital in Paddington, London, March 1989. Photo by Georges De Keerle/Getty Images.

19
July 1989

Princess Diana in a dress by Catherine Walker at the London Coliseum for a performance of Swan Lake by the Bolshoi Ballet, July 1989. Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images.

20
July 1989

Princess Diana at Claridges for a state banquet, July 1989. Photo by Julian Parker/UK Press via Getty Images.

21
September 1989

Princess Diana with her sons William and Harry at Wetherby School on Harry’s first day, September 1989. Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images.

22
May 1990

Princess Diana in Budapest during her official visit to Hungary, May 1990. Photo by Georges De Keerle/Getty Images.

23
July 1992

Princess Diana and her son Harry at Windsor Chapel for the wedding of Lady Helen Windsor and art dealer Tim Taylor, July 1992. Photo by Jayne Fincher/Getty Images.

24
June 1994

Princess Diana in a gown by Christina Stambolian at the Serpentine Gallery in London, June 1994. Photo by Jayne Fincher/Getty Images.

25
September 1995

Princess Diana with her sons William and Harry on the day Harry joined Eton, September 1995. Photo by Anwar Hussein/WireImage.

26
November 1995

Princess Diana in a Virgin Atlantic sweatshirt at the Chelsea Harbour Club in London, November 1995. Photo by Anwar Hussein/WireImage.

27
October 1996

Princess Diana at the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute dinner dance in Sydney, October 1996. Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images.

28
May 1997

Princess Diana at the Chelsea Harbour Health Club in London, May 1997. Photo by Antony Jones/UK Press via Getty Images.

29
June 1997

Princess Diana in a Jacques Azagury dress at the English National Ballet performance of Swan Lake at the Royal Albert Hall in London, June 1997. Photo by Anwar Hussein/Getty Images.