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Elite British Fashion
June 18, 2012
With this year not only being William and Kate’s first wedding anniversary, but the Queen’s diamond jubilee and the Olympics, Britain is high in the talking point stakes, and patriotism is everywhere. Despite Her Royal Highness hardly being at the top of the list when we think of modern fashion icons, no one can deny that she is always immaculately turned out. She has a team of designers on hand to make sure she looks her best at all times, armed with a budget that would make women everywhere turn green with envy. With this in mind, I thought I’d take a few styles that the Queen frequently partakes in, and show how they have been inspiring various designers recently.
The Queen is a fan of the two piece suit, and it is a trend that is gaining in popularity amongst women for everyday wear rather than just in the office. Design houses such as Dolce and Gabbana, Vivienne Westwood, Tom Ford and Stella McCartney have all featured suits in their catwalks, in materials varying from simple plain white cotton (Tom Ford) to the more bulky tweed (Stella McCartney) to black brocaded fabric at D&G. Suits are no longer restricting and uncomfortable, but can be sexy, by incorporating a pencil skirt with a risqué slit, or add a bit of edge as was achieved with grey designs at Vivienne Westwood, which were worn with ruffled shirts.
For The Queens’ trips to the countryside, she is often seen in the more muted shades of brown and green, donning a hat or thick woollen coat. We have already witnessed a rise in people clamouring for Barbour jackets and Hunter wellies over the past couple of years, and rural chic has now spread to other garments, with tartan, felt and tweed becoming more common fabric choices among designers such as Burberry and Ralph Lauren, and riding boots making a comeback. Quilted and belted coats were worn by models on the Mulberry catwalks, and tailored trousers paired with knee length riding style boots and trouser clips were on show at Gucci, where dark purple and navy blue gave the trend a gothic twist.
Obviously Her Majesty is not short of a gem or two, and deep jewel tones have been on the colour palette for the past few seasons. Recently though, a more simple approach has been taken, with silver and gold shades appearing on catwalks for Marc Jacobs and Diesel Black and Gold, using gorgeously shiny fabrics to create an ethereal shimmer like that of metal. Gold coloured jewellery is also top of the list of things to buy ready for the summer, the chunkier the better.
These are just a few trends that nod towards Britain’s monarch in the style stakes, showing her surprising influence on the fashion world; and together with more old-fashioned British traditions such as crocheting being revived ready for summer, it is clear we are a nation not to be ignored.