Most of the jubilee audience tuned in not to tripping the color, but to see the royal family observe the proceedings. As the high-stepping horses and pennants herald an official message of unity, the royal family’s viewpoint was closely scrutinized for what they tell us about the Windsor family dynamics, the 96-year-old queen’s health and the messages that “the firm” plans to broadcast during its weekend in the spotlight.
Watching the military flight from a Buckingham Palace balcony, the Queen wore blue and white, two of the three colors of the Union flag. At the Royal Windsor horse show last month, she had dressed for comfort in a woolen shawl instead of a coat, but here she was in her usual square, crisp, no-nonsense tailoring.
An ice blue gown designed by her longtime right-hand woman, Angela Kelly, was finished with a Wedgwood frosting of pearl and crystal embroidery, and was worn with a matching hat and formal white gloves. A cane was the only visible concession to mobility problems.
The first day of the platinum jubilee weekend had its equivalent of the moment that chief bridesmaid Pippa Middleton stole the show at a royal wedding, when Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, stood Close enough to the Buckingham Palace window. room where a family gathering was taking place to be captured in long lens photos.
Even with the addition of a diminutive Prince Louis in a miniature sailor suit, the formal lineup of straight-backed high-ranking royals on the balcony couldn’t compete, in intrigue, with the first sighting of the Sussexes in Great Britain. Brittany since her dramatic departure for California. The Duchess of Sussex was seen laughing and joking with children at the royal party, dressed in an off-the-shoulder navy blue dress and wide-brimmed white hat with a navy bow.
As a fashion choice, it was significantly similar in silhouette and style to the blush-pink outfit she wore for her first balcony photo shoot in 2018, when she was a newlywed on top of a brief honeymoon stint with her in-laws and with the British public. The navy blue color was in keeping with the blue and white color scheme worn by women and children of the royal inner circle. The Duchess of Cambridge wore white and the Duchess of Cornwall pale blue stripes, while the three Cambridge children also wore blue.
The message of Meghan’s outfit seemed to be that the Duchess is still royalty. The plunging neckline echoed the shape of her Givenchy wedding dress, while the elegant Audrey Hepburn-esque tailoring was a deliberate return to the way she dressed during her time as a royal in Britain, in contrast to the more relaxed appearance he adopted in California. . And whether by accident or design, her choice of blue placed her, at least visually, in harmony with her grandmother-in-law and her sister-in-law.
The Duchess of Cambridge’s style message was one of sustainability in fashion, with a repeated departure from an Alexander McQueen wrap dress worn for last year’s G7 summit in Cornwall. Until recently, an occasion as high-profile as the platinum jubilee would have merited a new dress. The Duchess of Cornwall also dressed from her existing wardrobe, in a Bruce Oldfield wrap dress and pearls.
Royalists critical of the Duchess of Sussex were quick to point out disapprovingly that her Stephen Jones hat overshadowed the saucer style worn by the Duchess of Cambridge. Before the jubilee, the two women were not believed to have been together since Oprah’s interview last year.
However, the sight of the Duchess of Cambridge wearing sapphire earrings that once belonged to Diana, Princess of Wales, as she rode beaming alongside Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall in the carriage procession, was a reminder that even the most tense family dramas can fade over time.