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The Gloucesters

Behind the Scenes with Birgitte: meet the minimalist royal


Another day, another peek at the rooms the royals usually keep hidden. And it’s almost as if someone asked for an emergency delivery of chic. After seeing inside the somewhat cluttered cloisters of various Windsor residences in the past few weeks, thanks to the wonders of Zoom, the Duchess of Gloucester has injected some cool calm into the dynasty’s decor decisions.

Birgitte’s study was snapped during a video call to show her support for one of her charities, Asthma UK. And, like its chatelaine, it’s all about understated elegance. Here’s what we learned from our latest nosy behind the royal curtains.

Caged Ornaments

Previous peeks into royal parlours have revealed a perilously high number of ornaments crammed into rooms that, while big, still aren’t large enough for the amount of china figurines on display there. Birgitte has taken a different royal path. Not only are there far fewer ornaments on show, they’ve been herded up and locked behind glass. It’s rather calming and far less cluttered and also means they won’t get as dusty. Just call her Duchess Hinch.

Walls of Wonder

It’s clean, it’s fresh and there are no clashing prints. The colour scheme of this royal study actually works while retaining plenty of vintage charm along the way. Those eau de nil walls are set off by the racing green lightshade while the burnished gold wall sconces actually match the table lamp. It’s a royal room Zoom that doesn’t give you a headache.

The Duchess of Gloucester at home
(Royal Family Twitter)

A Matching Set

We’ve got used to royal studies with a mish mash of furniture. Our normal view is a clatter of tables and chairs that all appear to have begun their existences elsewhere with long forgotten pieces that matched before they wandered, dazed by decades of history, into one room to sit by one another in a state of exhausted muddle. Not chez Gloucester. The desk and all its accessories are clearly meant to be together. No wonder Birgitte looks pleased.

Peaceful Paintings

There are many advantages to being somewhat lower in the royal pecking order than others and it includes wall hangings. While the occupants of ancient royal residences are duty bound to spend their day surrounded by the works of Old Masters in gilded frames, others get to freestyle a bit more. What’s not to love about this duchess’ quirky but really rather royal watercolour?

A Subtle Nod to Home

The little collection of amber in front of the Duchess of Gloucester isn’t just a pretty contrast to the green and gold in the room. Denmark, Birgitte’s country of birth, is known for amber and these trinkets provide a subtle nod to home for the duchess.



About author

Lydia is a writer, blogger and journalist. She's worked in the media for over twenty years as a broadcast reporter, producer and editor as well as feature and online writer. As well as royals and royal history, she's a news junkie and podcaster.