Charlene Wittstock has a lot going for her: she?s beautiful, athletic, set to marry a prince. But the South African native tells Vogue that transitioning into her new life in Monaco wasn?t always so easy. ?Finding my fashion feet has certainly been the biggest challenge,? she says, recalling a self-proclaimed fashion mishap at Monaco?s 2007 Red Cross Ball. ?I thought I looked great at the time, but looking back, I realize that my debut into Monaco society should have been better executed!? Despite any initial missteps, the bride-to-be has come into her own recently, receiving styling tips from Karl Lagerfeld (who gave her one of his very own smoking jackets) and Giorgio Armani, who designed her wedding ceremony dress. ?I?ve reached the point where I know what I like and what works,? she says. ?I?m starting to play with fresher, bolder, and more daring looks.? To help share that style with her newly adopted country, Wittstock hopes to establish a fashion week in Monaco. ?I want to make Monaco one of the fashion capitals of the world,? she says. ?Grace Kelly forged a link between Monaco and the movie world, and I would like to create a strong bond between Monaco and the fashion community.? But despite her passion for fashion, fianc� Prince Albert loves her most when she?s dressed down. ?I fell in love with her sense of humor, her simplicity, and the natural way she relates to people,? he tells Vogue. ?To me, Charlene never looks more beautiful than when she is natural ? without makeup and her hair pulled back.?
Mario Testino for VOGUE
Edited by Melissa Liebling-Goldberg