10 June 2012

60 years of the Queen's Fashion: From flowing skirts to amazing hats

First of all I'd like to ask you, no urge you, no beg you to go check out my guest post at the fabulous Emily's blog. While she has jetted off to sunnier climes (with this weather who can blame her.) she has let me do a guest post hereYes ME! So pretty pretty please with cherries on top can you check out my guest post hereThe last two weeks have been full of Jubilee mania. You couldn't move for union jack bunting or Mummy Second Hand Rose's scones and cream, seriously they are A-mazing. Everyone in the country, in fact nearly everyone in the world has been celebrating 60 years of Queen Lizzie sitting on that gorgeous gold throne with all those fabulous jewels. I'm sure there was even a man in Outer Mongolia waving a union jack and eating some coronation chicken.
The woman is officially fabulous with a capital F. At 86 years old she is still a jet setter and travels around showing off her royal wave to the world. Yes she brings millions of tourists to the country, yes she is the leader of the commonwealth and yes she has seen twelve prime ministers come and go throughout her reign, but what is the most important thing. Yes ladies her fashion.
(clockwise) Queen Elizabeth II in 2005; models wearing the designs of Italian designers Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana for Dolce & Gabbana during the Autumn/Winter 2008/2009 women's collections at Milan Fashion Week in 2008
You may not think it, but she is an icon in the fashion world. Five years ago she was listed alongside Kate Moss, Claudia Schiffer and Naomi Campbell as one of the 50 most glamorous women in the world. She always has a certain style about her and has in fact influenced many designers, such as Dolce and Gabanna's 2008-2009 old English Tweed look. The models strutted their stuff down the runway with below the knee tweed skirts, headscarves and big boxy bags. Thankfully there wasn't one bit of corgy poop in sight. I can't really see the models accessory being a plastic bag, can you?
Six images featuring Queen Elizabeth II wearing a variety of hatsA number one rule for the Queen is that she has to have a handbag. Where else is she going to keep her Wherther's Original? She also always has a hat which is colour co-ordinated with her outfit and they have become something of a trademark.
She's hardly going to set out wearing one of Philip Tracey's butterfly creation, but her hats are always beautifully made and help her stand out from the crowd. Like the Duchess of Cambridge now, in yesteryears if an outfit was created that was similar to hers, it was snapped up as quick as a free pack of chocolate biscuits. Personally I'd rather have the chocolate biscuits.
The other main rules for dressing the Queen are that she always wears a two inch heel and hemlines must be well below the knee. I can't see her wearing 4 inch Louboutin's and a Herve Leger bodycon dress, can you? To stop her dresses blowing up and us seeing her knicerblocker glory, coins are sewn into the hemline of her dresses to weigh them down. The TOWIE cast please take note.
I have scoured an archive of the Queen's outfits from the last 60 years and found key ones representing her style in each decade. It is fascinating to see how it has changed over the years and how she has created her own unique look. For each decade I have put an updated look together with all the items available on the high street. Not all of us can afford a £2000 Net a Porter dress sadly.


I simply adore this look, with the fitted waist and the lace, it is Second Hand Rose heaven. This look is accessorised with a matching white lace parasol, which helped keep the Queen cool during her Australian tour in 1954.
Regardless of the heat she kept her signature gloves well and truly on, the woman is clearly a legend. With the mid heel and the T-bar shoes, this is iconic of the pencil skirt dress style look. In the 50's the Queen was a style icon and certainly had an influence on fashion. Norman Hartnell who had been designing for her since the 1940's created some incredible gowns for her throughout the 50's with nipped in waists and full skirts.
Heel sandals, £25Rare London box clutch, £20John Lewis pearl bangle, £18Jon Richard pearl drop earrings, £7Jane Norman pearl jewelry, £16Long glove, $19Lace tunic, $15Talullah Tu crystal hair accessory, £20White glove, $12Miss Selfridge waist belt, $21This lace dress is a perfect way to get the look. With the nipped in waist, midi skirt and cap sleeves, it is perfect to imitate her majesty's 50's style. Accessorise it with either long or short gloves and some pearl jewellery to be a royal copycat. To make your waist rival the likes of Kylie, you can add a white belt to clinch everything in. Matching a cream lace bag and a cream pearl hairband pulls the look together with some beautiful cream T bar shoes. Finally pull of the Queen's look with a gorgeous lace parasol, who cares if it's a miserable day outside.

The Queen continued to be a style icon throughout the 60's with yet more beautiful outfits. She carried on wearing some beautiful nipped in designs with full flowing skirts, although she didn't follow in Twiggy's footsteps with a miniskirt. Now that I would like to see.
Patterns on dresses were very popular in the 60's which is shown in this print dress, that she wore during a royal visit to India in January 1961. She accesorised this outfit with gloves, pearls and another fabulous hat.

1960's Queen

Get this look with this striped colour block dress, complete with a nipped in waist and flowing skirt. Instead of white gloves, try continuing the theme of the dress with black scalloped gloves and some gorgeous yellow and black wedges. If you want to make your waist look even tinier, you can add the yellow heart belt over the waist black stripe. These gorgeous owl earrings go perfectly with it, along with the pearl circle necklace which was very popular of the time. If it's for a formal occasion, add this yellow fascinator, but if its just for posing around in Boots with add this yellow bow headband. Complete it with this great white bag with or without the chain, it will help show off the bright colours of the dress. If you want a bigger skirt you can add an underskirt, which you can find cheap on eBay. If you're a bit of a handy Mandy you can also get a piece of netting and make one yourself just by gathering the top. This whole look together is a great way to bring back the 60's bright colours and poofy skirts. Just find a Steve McQueen look alike and you'll be there.

1970'sEngland was full of hippyness with maxi chiffon dresses and tie dye. Vivienne Westwood was making her mark in King's Road with spikes and leather, but none of this was being reflected in good old Queenie's fashion. I can't really see her with spikes and leather or promoting free love, can you? This mustard and white dress was worn in Jamaica in 1975, wearing one of her most elaborate hats to date. Personally I'd happily wear that around Sainsbury's.
Mary jane shoes, £28Dorothy Perkins white handbag, $27Pearl jewelry, £20Warehouse white pearl jewelry, $21Beaded jewelry, £25Tahitian pearl earrings, $12ASOS knit hat, $8.70Leather glove, £11Warehouse leather belt, $81970's QueenThis Asos dress is perfect to replicate this style, with the print and the collar. The shorter skirt modernises it, but it still contains the Queen's trusty nipped in waist look. Turbans were popular in the 70's, so this knitted one will go perfectly with this dress along with the short peachy coloured gloves. The Queen always has a bit of bling including beautiful brooches. This one is great to add to the look and adds a hint of gold along with the necklace, bracelet and earrings. The white satin heels match the Queen's look along with the mid heel and the white clutch bag which completes it. It will go along with many outfits as well as this one. I bet the Queen is going green with envy right now.

1980'sThis look shows her pulling off her signature headscarf look that has become famous. She wore this blouse skirt combo which was worn at The Royal Windsor Horse Show in 1982. The Queen paired a cardigan with her trusty handbag and some sunglasses. She is wearing a patterned blouse that is a clash against her headscarf, kudos to Queenie.
Dorothy Perkins button up shirt, $49John Lewis purple cardigan, £18Jane Norman pleated midi skirt, £15Patent leather pumps, £30Mango shopping bag, £25Oasis white pearl necklace, $21Pearl jewelry, $25Plaid scarve, £13H&m sunglasses, £6.99Mint Bow Front Pastel Balarrina Pumps, £151980's QueenI love this look with the flared skirt and gorgeous bird print top. I've added a green tartan headscarf to the mix, which like the Queen's look clashes with the top but it isn't too over powering.You can wear this with mint coloured flats, which co-ordinate with the headscarf. You can take it up a notch and wear some nude patent heels, just like the Duchess of Cambridge does. The purple flowing cardigan goes well with all the colours and gives the look a modern twist by adding a big black bag and black sunglasses. Try the look with a pearl heart pendant and give a nod to the Queen with a crown ring. You can wear this look in the day and at night with the fabulous pastels updating the look to the modern day, perfect for walking the Corgi's with.

1990'sHere she is in the 1990's putting a twist on Tartan at a visit to Nottingham University. The dress is full of gorgeous purples and turquoises with yet another fabulous matching hat, gorgeous pearls and a trusty box handbag. I wouldn't expect anything less.
Motel t shirt dress, $24Black platform sandals, £30Dorothy Perkins black clutch handbag, $35ASOS quilted shoulder bag, $28Pieces pearl crystal jewelry, $21Dorothy Perkins white pearl jewelry, $27A Wear pearl cluster ring, £12Jon Richard cat brooch, £15Black hat, £181990's Queen

Okay I doubt the queen would go out with a bowler hat and killer heels, but remember she is in her late 60's here so is cleverly dressing for her age but with style. I love this tartan shirt, you can wear it so many ways. I've included the pearls due to her love of them and the pearl chain necklace looks great with the shirt. Black goes so well with red, so some black suede heels would go perfect with this along with the bowler hat cleverly placed on your head. I'm not saying you have to look like a banker from 1910, but it does add an edge to it. You could either wear this with a long chain quilted bag or carry a black clutch. The relaxed shirt depicts the grunge look of the 90's and all the accessories update it to the modern day.I'm definitely bookmarking it for my I can take on the world chick days.

2000'sHere is the Queen in November 2010 aged 84 rocking the pastel trend. She is at the Al Alam Palace in Oman in Asia. I love her hat and how her whole outfit yet again co-ordinates together. Her white bag, shoes and gloves go well with the lovely lilac.

This oh so gorgeous dress is a perfect match to the Queen's. It may have more shape to it then hers does, but it reflects her early signature style of the nipped in waist and flowing skirt. I've added a collar to this design, which are very hot in the fashion world right now and the pearl design continues the theme of her love of them, along with the bracelet and the ring. I love these shoes as they are subtle, yet full of design with polka dots and the glittery belt adds a hint of glamour to the dress, whilst clinching in the waist even more, Dita Von Teese watch out!

2000's QueenIf it is a special occasion you can add the purple flower to your hair, but if it's just for everyday the pearl bow headband will go perfectly. And finally to represent the Queen's signature white gloves and bag these satin ones and the white clutch would make the Queen want to go down the shops herself.So there we are six decades full of fashion. Over the years her style has evolved and has changed as she got older.

She has definitely developed a stronger style over the years and has become well known for her colour blocking with bright and light colours and her love of print.I just love how well co-ordinated she is, there isn't any brown and black worn together in site.
After looking and drooling over all her outfits, I think her love does belong in the era of when her dresses were designed by Norman Hartnell with his full skirts, sumptuous silks and duchess satin. The Queen is definitely not a slave to fashion and I somehow doubt she spends her time in fluffy pink slipper scouring over Vogue for an outfit to find for her next occasion.
The main thing to take from her outfits is that she dresses for herself. She doesn't care two hoots what Grazia or the Daily Mail say about her latest outfit. Anwyay if they did say something bad about her, she could always lock them up in the tower of London for 100 years. What we can learn from her is not to dress for anybody but yourself.Now where's my credit card?
Second Hand Rose


  1. these are wonderful outfits! i'm not british (i wish i am though, haha!), but i definitely think that the queen is an awe-inspiring woman! 60 years on the throne couldn't have been that easy. ;)

    <3, Mimi
    $100 Shopbop Gift Card Giveaway -- Open internationally!

  2. I cannot tell you how much I LOVE this post! I'm a big fan of our Queen Marge, and threw myself into the jubilee celebrations last weekend (aka drank far too much whisky and found myself hurling round on a ferris wheel at a midnight funfair...)!

    I've said it before and I'll say it again. She always looks immaculate, and it's a shame her fashion gets so overlooked, because jay zeus, while it's not my cup of tea, the tailoring and attention to detail in every single outfit is quite something! Thank you for showing the world a slightly less expected fashion icon! I can only hope that I'll look as good as her when I'm 86!

    Love the blog, love YOU!! xXx

  3. Wow this is an AMAZING post!!!! I just adore the fact that the queen is always so immaculately turned out and is not afraid of wearing colour or Hats! The image of her in the 50's lace dress is just stunning so easy to see why she's a style icon!

  4. I love this post! The outfits you've put together are brilliant- I also love the way you explain how to get certain looks for those of us who are a little more clueless! Absolutely brilliant. Thank you! Xxx

  5. Amazing post dear! Great blog! Following! Follow back? <3

  6. very elegant and very stylish!
    your blog is lovely.
    Also if you come and visit my blog I'll be happy :)

  7. What a wonderful post, dear! I love how you depicted the fashion of each decade with a picture of the queen and a similar look put together by you! Love it! Will surely check out your guest post!

  8. such an interesting and hardworked post! congrats!
    loved it!

  9. Oh yeah! I nailed another good blog to follow :). I'm following. I hope you can check out my site: http://theproverbs.net and Follow. In the meantime, I will browse through your blog again. Hope to hear from you soon.

  10. This is the best post I've read in ages!
    I love the Queen's style, look how tiny her waist was back in her youth! She always looks amazing I think. Long live Queenie =)

  11. Thank you so much for your sweet comment, dear! I'm so flattered!

  12. The outfits you put together are great!


  13. Love you're blog, dear.
    I follow u. A lot of kisses.


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