In her 65 years on the throne, Queen Elizabeth has established herself as something of a stealth fashion icon. Her outfits are always occasion-appropriate and eminently practical (because you can’t really walk the corgis wearing couture, after all), subtly supporting British craftsmanship at the same time through her careful choice of designers. And while she tends to stick to a very specific formula of colourful coat dresses and a Launer handbag, she’s not afraid to shake things up a little. She’s recently been ahead of the curve, after all, with two of the most ubiquitous trends of the past few years - the vogue for millennial pink (which has long been her go-to hue) and for horsebit loafers (hers are by Anello & Davide, rather than Gucci) – and she’s recently given the royal seal of approval to London designer Richard Quinn, who is known for his avant garde aesthetic.
At this year’s Garter Day service at Windsor Castle, Her Majesty once again proved that she’s the master of (you might even say, the queen of) balancing traditional attire with a flourish of personal style. Though she was dressed in full ceremonial regalia – we’re talking a plumed hat, a sweeping robe, a sash and traditional jewellery – for the event honouring the Order of the Garter, an ancient Order of Chivalry which recognizes important work for public service, she still managed to mix things up a little with her unexpected choice of metallic accessories: a pair of silver, T-bar shoes and an oversized envelope bag in the same shade. Perhaps Elizabeth II really was taking mental notes at the Richard Quinn show last season: the designer's latest collection featured similar metallic finishes.
While Her Majesty typically opts for plain black loafers, custom made to fit her measurements by Anello & Davide then broken in by a dedicated member of staff, further investigation reveals that these special silver heels aren’t a one-off choice: in fact, they are her Garter Day staple, and she’s also worn the same pair for the Royal Variety performance back in 2012.
Look back at Her Majesty's best millennial pink ensembles in the gallery below...
Arriving at the Chelsea Flower Show, 2018