Dressing the Queen: The Jubilee Wardrobe



Under grey skies, multiple million people gathered for the Thames River Pageant of the 2012 Diamond Jubilee. Huddled under a sea of umbrellas, some had even spent the night there to protected prime seats. But the wait proved worthwhile. As the parade passed, there atop the splendid Spirit of Chartwell stood the Queen, resplendent against the wind and rain in a smart crystal encrusted white coat and pashmina shawl. The effect used to be one of breathtaking beauty, and it struck just the right note with the rain-dampened crowd, reinforcing Britain as a noble maritime nation.

Dressing the Queen reveals the careful planning and preparation that went into the Queen’s wardrobe for the Diamond Jubilee, the first such celebration since that of Queen Victoria in 1897 and made the entire more momentous by London’s hosting of the 2012 Olympics. The name of the game to the Queen’s unfailing style is royal couturier Angela Kelly, whose team of dressmakers and milliners spent two years designing and bringing to fruition the creations seen in the events leading up to and all the way through the Diamond Jubilee, in addition to at the Olympics. Along with presenting the right image, the Queen’s clothing will have to address a great many practical concerns—and all of her garments will have to be pristinely maintained. Of course, no outfit is complete without the very best hat, and a chapter of the book is devoted entirely to their intricate and highly detailed creation.

Whether the day holds a historic state visit or an afternoon at Royal Ascot, the Queen commands attention wherever she appears. If you’ve ever wondered how she maintains such impeccable personal style, this well-illustrated book will answer that question and many more.

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