Frivolous fashions! The most memorable fashion looks from Royal Ascot

It may be an esteemed horse race, but we all know the Royal Ascot truly is a five-day royal fashion festival.
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Royal Ascot may be the most prestigious English horse race, but it’s also one of the biggest fashion events of Britain’s high-society calendar.

Royals and socialites flock to the Berkshire green for five days of equestrian action and more importantly the fanciest fashions.

Ever since it’s inception in around 1711, Royal Ascot has set the scene for exquisite sartorial style, but it must be noted, one can’t just turn up in any old thing, there’s a strict dress code.

Traditionally, women were to wear dresses of an appropriate length, meaning just above or below the knee, dress straps must be a least 2.5cm thick (no spaghetti straps!), hats are serious business, no fascinators, however a headpiece which has a solid base of 10cm or more in diameter is acceptable.

Meanwhile, for the gents, socks are a must, as are black shoes, a waistcoat must be paired with a tie (no cravats) and a black or grey top hat is to be worn.

In recent years, the rules were bent slightly allowing women to wear trousers – though they must be full length and of a matching colour.

Now you’re clued up on the fashion dos and don’ts, we decided to take a look back at some of the most memorable fashion moments in the history of the Royal Ascot horse races.

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Zara Tindall Royal Ascot Day 3

Zara Tindall made a statement on the third day of the 2022 Royal Ascot in a cream coat dress with bright pink button detailing. This was paired with a vibrant green hat with a fuchsia rose.

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Sophie Wessex Royal Ascot Day 3

Sophie, Countess of Wessex opted for a colourful floral frock for the third raceday. The ankle-length dress with a V-shaped neckline was paired with a bright pink fascinator and a tan clutch.

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Princess Anne Royal Ascot Day 3

Princess Anne diverted from her traditional style on day three of Royal Ascot with this eye-catching metallic, ochre-hued dress with ruffles, paired with a white hat and pearls.

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Princess Beatrice Royal Ascot 2022 Day 2

Princess Beatrice looked like she just stepped off the most glamorous tennis court in this flattering cream number, paired with midnight suede pumps and a Laura Aspit Livens ‘Ratio’ hat.

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Sophie Wessex Royal Ascot 2022 Day 2

Royal fans fell head over heels for Sophie, Countess of Wessex’s blue outfit for Royal Ascot day two. With a frilly blue Suzannah London dress coupled with a Ginny clutch, Prada pastel blue suede pumps and Jane Taylor hat, the royal truly pulled out all the stops for race day.

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Princess Beatrice Royal Ascot 2022 Day 1

Opting for a flowy look for the first day at the races in 2022, Princess Beatrice stunned in this Zimmerman floral midi dress with pink satin pumps and a floral straw headband. Her husband, Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi, matched perfectly with a pink tie.

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Sophie Wessex Royal Ascot 2022 Day 1

Pink is her colour! Sophie, Countess of Wessex stunned at the first day of the 2022 Royal Ascot in a wide-brimmed maroon hat and baby pink dress with a pearl brooch.

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Zara Tindall Royal Ascot 2022 Day 1

Zara Tindall was a vision in this pastel watercolour print dress from Anna Mason in 2022. Featuring romantic puffed sleeves and a tiered hem, this may be one of the royal’s best Ascot looks yet.

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Princess Anne Royal Ascot 2022 Day 1

The equestrian loving Princess Royal beamed in a cream jacket with taupe embroidery on the lapels. The feather detail on her fascinator was a particular stand out.

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Prince Charles and Camilla Parker-Bowles Royal Ascot 2022 Day 1

Prince Charles’ blue tie complemented Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall’s 2022 Ascot attire perfectly. Accompanied by a pearl necklace and earrings, the duchess’ open collared outfit and fascinator will be one to remember.

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Kate Middleton wears a heavenly blue Elie Saab ensemble at the 2019 Royal Ascot


Sophie Wessex

Our royal style underdog Sophie Wessex was the first royal to utilise the change in women’s dress rules, absolutely rocking this blue pant-suit in 2019.


Sophie wessex 2

And in 2021, she returned with a vengeance in this stunning purple toned look. Sophie for president!

Meghan Markle’s first Royal Ascot look went down in the books as a royal success! She stunned in a belted Givenchy shirt-dress.

Sophie of Wessex

And Meghan was in good company! Sophie, Countess of Wessex also stunned in a light pink dress with black detailing. Lo and behold, the dress itself is a royal favourite – Princess Beatrice wore it almost a year later for the annual Trooping the Colour parade in London!

The brighter the better for Queenie! In 2018 the monarch donned a sunshine yellow coat-dress that only she could pull off.

An English rose? Danish fashion designer Isabell Kristensen, drew inspiration from the green’s floral surrounds.

Zara Philips went for bold colours and stripes in 2016.

Princess Beatrice opted to top her nude coat-dress with a statement hat brimming with exotic-looking feathers, in 2017.

A racegoer to day one of this year’s races took the theme very literally.

Prince Diana was so ahead of her time! The Princess of Wales wore a chic striped suit by Roland Klein and hat by Philip Somerville in 1987.

She’s the Queen of Colour! Fuschia was the hue du jour, for Her Majesty in 2017.

Duchess Catherine in a bespoke Alexander McQueen floral lace dress and a white topper adorned with pearls and a lace bow, at the Royal Ascot in 2017.

Princess Beatrice waves from underneath an interestingly shaped hat, 2016.

The Queen laughs off fashion faux pas in 2016, as she and a jockey notice they’ve couple-dressed for the occasion!

Queen Elizabeth with Princess Anne and the Queen Mother in pink at Royal Ascot, 1970.

Now that’s a fashion statement! Princess Anne stepped out in chic emerald ensemble in for day three of the races in 2017.

Princess Diana wore a suit like no other royal. In 1990, she opted for this Catherine Walker dusty pink and purple ensemble.

Perhaps one of Princess Beatrice’s more demure looks, 2015.

Gertrude Shilling, a stalwart of outrageous fashion at the Berkshire race course. In 1969 she wore a show-stopping apricot number with an enormous, matching, cartwheel hat.

Princess Michael of Kent was seen wearing a black and white outfit, including a large feathered hat and a post-surgery black velvet eye-patch, in 2016.

Kate loves wearing white lace to the races, and why not when it looks so stunning! Here she is having a laugh in 2016.

Diana poised in a polka dot day dress and matching hat designed by Victor Edelstein.

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