Fashion guru Mary Portas has sparked controversy today with her scathing appraisal of the way female cabinet members choose to dress. “If I were PM," she said, "I’d bloody restyle all those women. I mean, the female cabinet, what an ugly bunch. I would restyle them.
"Do you know, I could not look at them. I couldn’t look at them! I go in for meetings now and they do dress up for my meetings, but I just want to go, 'Pleeease. No. Not that necklace. Not that skirt.' ”
Home Secretary Theresa May, who is known for her daring leopard prints, and Conservative Party Chairman Baroness Warsi - once snapped in a pink and purple shalwar kameez - might want to take cover under a one-sized poncho today, as the full interview is published in heat magazine. But they at least have the right of reply. As the newest member of the Royal family, Kate Middleton is more likely to have to grin and bear it. Her status as a fashion icon is also torn to pieces by Portas.
“Is that fashion?” she questioned. “I think she’s done an incredible job globally, but I do not know how you can say she is a fashion icon. I just don’t get that.”
However, there is one high-profile woman whose sense of style gets the Portas stamp of approval: Dragon's Den newbie Hilary Devey. "In a really camp way," she explained, "it slightly borders on caricature and ’80s glamour and power dressing."
Evidently, both women have an obsession with shoulder pads, which for Portas may prove the basis of a beautiful friendship. “Funnily enough, someone said to me recently, 'Oh, Hilary Devey would really love to meet you.' I just think we’d have a really good laugh.”
Who needs the Ab Fab Christmas special with this double-act?