A look at the style of Queen Elizabeth II through the decades | show news

By LEANNE ITALIA, Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) — Queen Elizabeth II might have the hardest-working wardrobe on the planet.

“Each outfit worn in public is carefully calibrated to inspire or remind, to indicate gratitude or respect, to convey a sense of power or familiarity,” The Mail wrote on Sunday in 2015. “Her Majesty neither sets nor follows trends, but while he turns a deaf ear to the siren songs of fashion, he has his own unique style”.

From her Hermès tiaras, hats and scarves to her Launer London handbags and even her umbrellas, the queen’s style has been hyper-documented from her birth, her days as a young princess, her ascension to the throne and now, more than 70 years after her reign, as he celebrates his Platinum Jubilee at the age of 96.

Now known for her sparkly coats (to be seen by large crowds) with matching fedoras, the queen was a glamorous young princess and monarch in previous decades.

Political Cartoons

Some highlights of the queen’s style through the years:

Cotton or wool? The queen’s very birth sparked a style debate, writes Bethan Holt, fashion editor for The Telegraph and author of this year’s “The Queen: 70 Years of Majestic Style.”

Her wardrobe from the start was a subject of national fascination with a layette sewn by her mother and grandmother, and a little help from disadvantaged women across Britain. Declaring that wool-clad babies looked like “little gnomes”, Lilibet’s mother, then Duchess of York, opted for frilly cotton, rejecting anything too fussy.

When Sister Margaret arrived four years later, the princesses often twinned her, dressing alike until their teens. But the soon-to-be queen as a child “never gave a damn” about her clothes, according to her former governess Marion Crawford.

“She wore what she was told without arguing, apart from a long drab raincoat which she detested,” Crawford wrote in her controversial memoir, “The Little Princesses.”

With her uncle’s tumultuous abdication and her father’s rise to become King George VI, Princess Elizabeth became heir presumptive (absent any future male heir, which never materialized).

Enter couturier Norman Hartnell, according to Holt. While there were other designers, he was tasked with dressing the family as they emerged on the world stage, including the two princesses at ages 11 and 6. Her “bow-trimmed gowns and little capes signaled a return to the quiet reliability of the monarchy,” Holt wrote.

During World War II, the 18-year-old Elizabeth began to make more public appearances, training as a mechanic in early 1945 towards the end of the war. It was the only time she routinely wore pants (and overalls), according to Holt.

The queen was, and still is, practical when necessary, but also glamorous in sparkly gowns when the moment called for her. She and she often dressed with short sleeves or sleeveless, something that does not happen today. She posed for photos with Prince Philip in a simple light-colored dress with above-the-elbow sleeves and low heels in her size 4 (US 6) shortly before her wedding in 1947.

“People want to see their royals as royalty, but they also don’t want to think that taxpayer money is being wasted,” said Nick Bullen, editor-in-chief of True Royalty TV.

Hartnell transformed the florals of Botticelli’s “Primavera” into a gown of white crystals and pearls. But it wasn’t easy. There were diplomatic issues in the still miserable aftermath of the war, Holt wrote. Customs seized 10,000 seed pearls from the US, and journalists were assured that the origins of the silk produced in Kent and woven in Essex were worms from “nationalist” China and not “enemy” Japan.

Thousands of people in the UK sent in their ration coupons for Princess Elizabeth to use on clothing materials. That would have been illegal, so she saved hers and asked the government for 200 more, Holt told The Associated Press.

“It showed the thirst that there was in the country for this great moment of glamour,” he said. “In recent years, we’ve known the Queen and Prince Philip as this sweet old couple, but we have to remember that at the time they were this dazzling and glamorous new couple on the scene.”

The wedding was not without drama behind the scenes. Queen Mary’s Fringe Tiara, made by Elizabeth’s grandmother from a necklace Queen Victoria gave Mary, broke just before the ceremony and was rushed to Crown Jeweler Garrard for repair.

The dress and wedding offered “a real moment of hope,” Holt said.

Years ago she settled on skirts and dresses just below the knee, but their hemlines were sometimes a problem for older members of her family. In 1952, the 25-year-old queen brought her family in mourning at her father’s funeral in accordance with strict dress codes established during Queen Victoria’s reign, according to Holt.

As Queen Mary bowed to her granddaughter and kissed each cheek, she warned, “Lilibet, your skirts are too short for mourning,” Holt writes. The new queen’s dress floated well above her ankles but respectfully below her knee, while her grandmother’s was floor-length. Everyone, including Queen Elizabeth II, was draped in black veils, as was Queen Victoria for 40 years after Prince Albert’s death in 1861.

“The evolution of the queen’s style, from a young princess to the longest-serving monarch in British history, makes her contemporary but not fashionable,” Bullen said.

The queen we know today wears block heels or brogues, usually handmade by Anello & Davide, a custom Launer perched on her arm, and a brooch on one shoulder. She goes with kilts and skirts in kilts and kilts like her country style. But the queen of the early 1950s wowed the world with cinched waists, pencil silhouettes and some gauzy, all-out experiments as the post-war fashion earthquake gripped the country.

“In the early years of her reign, she really embraced Dior’s New Look aesthetic, and women looked to her outfits as a source of inspiration, just like people do with the Duchess of Cambridge today,” said Kristin Contino, style reporter for Page Six. .

There was playful glamor in the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s, including a bold multicolored evening gown in 1999 for a Royal Variety Performance. Created by Karl-Ludwig Rehse, it featured a riotous diamond-patterned bodice of bright yellow, blue, green and pink sequins.

There were also some pants days and a turban phase in the ’60s and ’70s amidst a wide range of hat styles.

The queen learned of her father’s death on a stopover in Kenya on the way to Australia. Some reports indicate that she was wearing jeans to an encounter with a herd of elephants at the time her father died in his sleep at Sandringham, Holt wrote. She donned trousers on safari in Zambia in 1979 and a set of trousers in 2003 as she was leaving King Edward VIII hospital in London after knee surgery.

She was Margaret, the rebel, recognized as a fashion figure at Dior and other designers, and her influence on Elizabeth was tangible. The little sister helped the queen search for new British designers and introduced her to newcomers such as milliner Simone Mirman, according to Holt. Mirman created some of the queen’s most notable hats, including her Tudor-style “medieval helmet,” as she called it Hartnell, in pale yellow, for the investiture of Prince Charles in 1969.

“Margaret was really in tune with fashion. She would have been the one reading Vogue. And because of that, she would often go with the queen on dates to help inject a little extra flair into her appearance,” Holt said.

Usually attached to British designers, the queen has a great fondness for silk scarves from the French fashion house Hermes. The brand has issued several special designs in her honor. She did it in 2016 with a horse-themed scarf to commemorate her 90th birthday.

One doesn’t equate today’s queen with a mad dash to copy her style, but for a brief period in the 1950s, women were able to do just that thanks to their love of cotton dresses in delicate floral or abstract prints of cotton. Horrockses Fashions, a British brand. off-the-shelf brand, Holt said.

Another look at those early years is also highlighted. In October 1952, shortly after her accession to the throne, the queen was a sensation at the Empire Theater with a royal performance of the musical “Because You’re Mine.” She wore a black Hartnell tuxedo-style dress with a white front and wide lapels in a halter design, paired with long white gloves, a tiara on her head, and a diamond bracelet on one wrist.

She hit all the magazines and newspapers the next day. Manufacturers were quick to copy it. She was nicknamed Magpie and she never used it again.

The queen loves color coordination, and today she wears bright and pastel colors in floral coats and dresses.

That also goes for their unique clear birdcage umbrellas. They are made by Fulton Umbrellas and can be had for $30 or less, although the queen’s are custom made. She owns about 100 in a rainbow of colors but, contrary to reports, she doesn’t own 200 of her favorite Ella Launer bags, Holt said. Gerald Bodmer, who rescued Launer in 1981 after a period of decline, wanted to dispel that myth.

“He says he has various styles in various colors. He says 200 is way off the mark,” Holt said.

Launer extends the straps on her leather bags to make them easier to sling over your arm and makes them lighter to carry. And what is he wearing? Bullen said he’s heard there’s always lipstick, a scarf and a photo of Prince Philip, who died last year at the age of 99.

Irish designer Paul Costelloe, who dressed Princess Diana in the 1980s and 1990s, told the AP of the queen’s style: “She’s a bit like a school teacher, a good school teacher. She is never surprised. She does it well.

Follow Leanne Italia on Twitter at http://twitter.com/litalie

Associated Press writer Sylvia Hui in London contributed to this report.

Copyright 2022 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Leave a Comment