Monday kicked off the widely-publicised U.S. State visit to London, and whilst we won’t be getting into the politics here, we will be taking a look at the fashion. Let’s look at a few style highlights.
The President and First Lady arrived Monday and were greeted by The Queen, who wore a Stewart Parvin coat in a gorgeous shade of pale jade green for the event.
Underneath, she sported a “pleated silk dress in shades of grey, jade and dusty pink” and a matching ribbon-trimmed hat by Rachel Trevor-Morgan, according to reporter Rebecca English. I haven’t yet found a shade that doesn’t look fetching on Her Majesty, but this colour was especially pretty in the June sunshine.
We got a better look at the dress once she removed the coat for lunch, and I especially liked the pleats at the bottom of the skirt.
The First Lady wore a smart white Dolce & Gabbana dress with navy trim and a matching hat by French-American designer Hervé Pierre. Melania’s outfit was widely praised on social media, and I loved the clean lines of this elegant look – it felt very My Fair Lady to me.
The Duchess of Cornwall looked summery in a simple white Anna Valentine dress with a subtle peplum detail at the sides, along with a matching hat by Philip Treacy, along with her favourite pearl choker and white accessories.
I always look forward to state banquets since they’re one of the few times when you see the royal family in tiaras and serious jewels. There was an impressive turnout to Monday night’s event so we won’t take a look at every outfit, but this was surely a stunning evening for royal fashion.
The Queen did not disappoint, bringing out the wonderful Burmese Ruby Tiara for the occasion. It was created in 1973 using diamonds from the Nizam of Hyderabad Tiara, a wedding gift from an Indian ruler. Some interesting facts about the Burmese Ruby Tiara from The Court Jeweller:
“The rubies used in the making of the new piece were also a wedding gift; Elizabeth received them from the people of Burma. The gift included precisely 96 rubies, all of which are now set in the tiara. The Burmese people believe that rubies help protect the wearer from the 96 diseases that can afflict the human body — they definitely wanted to ensure that Elizabeth remained hale and hearty. The rubies and diamonds were set in a series of rose motifs, and if you know your English history, you’ll recognize a heraldic rose that combines white and red petals as the Tudor rose.”
She carried out the ruby-and-diamond theme with a coordinating (and jaw-dropping) set of jewels known as the Crown Rubies, including a necklace, rings, and dangling earrings, and wore a long-sleeved white gown to better show off the jewels. The dress – an Angela Kelly creation – was covered in beautiful crystal floral embellishment.
The Duchess of Cornwall also went with white, wearing a repeat three-quarter-sleeve piece by one of her favourite designers, Bruce Oldfield. She opted for the Greville tiara, which is one of her go-to’s for these types of occasions, along with a topaz pearl choker and diamond earrings.
The Duchess of Cambridge delighted royal fans by wearing a new white gown by Alexander McQueen, along with her new Royal Victorian Order sash. Her sweetheart-neck gown, covered in rows and rows of ruffles, felt quite 1980s to me, but in a good way.
Unsurprisingly, the duchess selected Queen Mary’s Lovers Knot tiara (often incorrectly referred to as the Cambridge Lover’s Knot). This makes the seventh occasion she’s worn the tiara, which was favoured by her late mother-in-law, Diana, Princess of Wales. She paired the tiara with the Queen Mother’s sapphire fringe earrings; a perfect way to complement the blue hue of her sash.
The Countess of Wessex added a nice splash of colour to the evening, choosing to repeat a periwinkle Bruce Oldfield gown of hers with flattering draping at the top. She wore what looked to be a new tiara, but The Court Jeweller pointed out it was the same one she wore to her wedding, but re-worked. I have to admit I’ve never been a fan of the wedding tiara so it was a nice surprise to see it re-designed in a new style.
Finally, The First Lady kept the white theme going, wearing a sleeveless Christian Dior gown with a sheer panel at the top and flame-style detail, along with long white gloves. I have to admit I was expecting more of a wow-factor from her dress, but a more restrained look was probably the best bet for the occasion.
On day two of the state visit, the President and First Lady hosted a dinner for Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall at Winfield House. The duchess wore a gorgeous white evening gown by Fiona Clare, while Mrs Trump chose a Meghan-esque sleek red caped gown by Givenchy.
Camilla’s gown, which she wore on a visit to Greece last year, featured three-quarter sleeves and a sheer overlay embroidered with flowers. This is one of my favourite evening looks of hers, and I love the full, soft skirt and the floral detail. She accessorised with a statement diamond necklace and earrings along with gold bracelets.
I didn’t notice it at first, but The First Lady’s gown featured a subtle red sequin detail at the neckline, which made the dress more interesting than a basic solid red. I thought the cape on Melania’s dress looked especially pretty when seated, but I can’t say the same for Suzanne Ircha, wife of the US Ambassador. She chose a quite interesting feathered/caped ensemble that seemed a bit over-the-top for the setting.
Overall, it was fascinating to see the various events – and outfits – of the visit unfold. From afternoon visits to glittering banquets, we got to see a range of styles and jewels.