It was another magnificent display of tradition and pageantry at this year’s Trooping the Colour ceremony in London.
Although the Queen’s birthday was April 21st, this is the official commemoration of the sovereign’s birthday.
It is an amazing event to watch on television, I can only imagine what it’s like in person. I do know a few WKWers were planning on being there, perhaps they can share their impressions with us. Some history on the event from The Daily Mirror’s live blog:
Trooping the Colour originated from traditional preparations for battle.
Colours, or flags, were carried, or “trooped”, down the rank so that it could be seen and recognised by the soldiers.
More background on the day’s events from The Army in London:
There were more than 200 horses on parade, and more than 400 musicians from all the Household Division Bands & Corps of Drums marched and played as one. The famous Drum Horses of the Mounted Bands with their immaculately waxed moustaches were also on parade.
All the Soldiers paraded in the traditional ceremonial uniforms of the Household Cavalry, Royal Horse Artillery, and Foot Guards. Many more were working behind the scenes to ensure this, the most important parade of the year, went smoothly.
The Duchess of Cornwall and Duchess of Cambridge.
You can see the Queen at the bottom of the photo on the viewing stand. Back to HQ London – The Army in London:
The Sovereign’s Escort, consisting of troops of the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment and the Mounted Bands accompanied Her Majesty and arrived on the parade at 11am.
Her Majesty inspected the Guards on parade, the Massed Bands marched across the parade square in slow and quick time, and then the Colour was “trooped” through the ranks.
HM has taken part in the ceremony every year since 1947, when she was Princess Elizabeth. (There was a strike one year and the event wasn’t held.)
ITV News shows Prince Charles, Prince William and the Princess Royal.
The Queen was in a powder blue silk coat and dress, and matching hat, all made by Angela Kelly.
After activities at Horse Guards Parade, it was time to head for Buckingham Palace balcony to enjoy the RAF flypast.
This photo comes via the Royal Air Force.
Another dramatic sight.
The youngest of the senior royals looked like they very much enjoyed the flyby.
This one begs a caption contest: the Prince appears to be speaking into his wrist like a PPO/Secret Service employee.
In addition to the Queen and Prince Philip, others viewing the flyby included: the Princess Royal; Sir Timothy Laurence; the Earl of Wessex and Sophie, Countess of Wessex; Princess Eugenie; the Duke of York; Lady Helen Taylor & her 9-year-old daughter, Estella.
Moving to the fashion information, the Duchess was in a new suit.
The Palace did not issue the usual release with information about the Duchess’s apparel. They did share what the Queen was wearing as noted above; I believe they also released details on the Duchess of Cornwall’s ensemble as well, but for the life of me, I can’t locate that information.
At any rate, today’s suit jacket was reminiscent of a piece worn back in 2011 when Kate and William visited Darwen Academy, a navy Amanda Wakeley jacket and skirt. Below left we show the Wakeley jacket; in the center is today’s jacket; on the right, a discovery made by Carly from Kate Middleton Style blog: a past-season piece by Alexander McQueen.
Kate’s jacket certainly looks most similar to the McQueen ‘silk cotton jacquard Peplum jacket‘ Carly found at Browns. The Duchess had the garment’s more dramatic elements altered, removing the front cutout portion of the peplum and entirely eliminating the pleated back. It’s difficult to see if Kate is wearing a camisole, or if she has a dress on beneath the jacket, it is clear her garment has a more modest front opening, with the hook/eye closures coming up higher than on the original piece.
More details from the product description at Browns:
- Snow white fauna silk-cotton jacquard jacket with exaggerated peplum by Alexander McQueen.
- Short stand-up collar with thin V neckline.
- Long sleeves with four button cuffs. Concealed hook and eye closure.
- Peplum with cut-out front and pleated back.
- Darted front and back. Structural shoulder pads. Close tailored fit.
Kate’s jacket has just three buttons at the cuff, not four as shown on the OTR (off the rack) garment. The fabric used in Kate’s suit is heavily textured with a pebbled effect. An interesting tidbit on the material: Facebook friend Kristen Gauthier noticed that the iconic McQueen skull motif was actually visible in the pattern of the fabric.
(With apologies for the rather pathetic arrows I made, you can just about see the skulls.) It is also difficult to ascertain the jacket’s actual color, different lighting gives it different hues. Please forgive the cable dangling in this photo, I thought the change in color merited showing the photo, in this picture the material almost looks like an icy blue with grey.
I believe Carly is correct in saying this is the jacket Kate was wearing today.
The Duchess sported a new hat by Jane Taylor.
Our thanks to My Small Obsessions for verifying Kate’s hat was by Jane Taylor; it is a bespoke piece.
The Duchess carried her Alexander McQueen clutch.
Kate was also wearing a new pin or brooch. It appears to be two rows of oversized pearls. I do not yet have a good enough photo to share, as soon as I locate one I will get it posted asap.
If doubting Sarah Burton and Alexander McQueen’s status as Kate’s go-to designer for official functions, look below: Kate has worn the label three out of four times at Trooping the Colour.
It looked like a glorious day that everyone seemed to enjoy. The rain stayed away and temperatures were moderate.
We will see you Monday for the Order of the Garter. It’s not been confirmed that the Duchess will attend, at this point I expect we’ll see her.
- the HQ London Army in London Facebook page is filled with wonderful information and outstanding photos, click here to see the Trooping the Colour pages
- The Daily Mirror’s live blog coverage & photo gallery is here, The Daily Mail’s photo-laden coverage is here
- The Telegraph’s story is here, The Daily Express story and photo gallery can be seen here
- ITV‘s coverage can be seen here, an outstanding BBC story can be watched here, with more BBC coverage here & photo gallery here
- to see all the details of what Sophie, Countess of Wessex was wearing, click here