With Royal Ascot just a week away, we’re sure your outfit preparations are in full swing! Seen as a major fashion event, there’s a lot to consider from worrying about how to style your hair and whether to take a jacket (cue check weather app for the millionth time), not to mention choosing the right hat!
We know the rules for this traditional event can be pretty confusing; do hats need to have brims, can you wear a knee length dress, what about a trouser suit? Don’t worry we’ve got you covered with the dos and don’ts in our simple Royal Ascot guide.
Wear a hat, headpiece or fascinator at all times.
If you are in the Royal Enclosure you must ensure that your hat has a solid base of 4 cm (10 inches) or more in diameter.
For the Queen Anne enclosure fascinators are also permitted and your headpiece can be any size.
Dresses and skirts should fall just above the knee or longer. Trouser suits can be worn – they should be full length and of matching material.
If you are in the Windsor Enclosure you are encouraged to wear smart clothes but no formal dress restrictions apply.
Wear strapless, off the shoulder, spaghetti straps or halter necks.
Wear fancy dress.
Expose your midriff.
How to Choose the Perfect Hat
First things first, make sure you have chosen your dress, skirt or suit colour before you decide upon the hat. This way you know the base colour of your outfit and can build from there in terms of which blowdry style, hat and accessories to go for.
Consider how often you will be wearing your hat. If you have a wedding every other weekend this summer perhaps you’re looking to double up on some of your outfits! Neutral colours for your hat such as navys, creams and blacks would be the best bet.
If you don’t wear hats often and this is a one off event for you, consider hiring your hat instead! Check out The Hat Club based in Fulham, London.
It seems obvious but always try on your hat before purchasing it! Remember things can look totally different on you than to that of the model. What suits someone else’s face shape, skin tone and hair style may be the opposite for you.
Shop around, ensure you do your research and seek inspiration from other milliners before choosing your hat. We understand that we are now only a short time away from Ascot so if you wanted to make a bespoke order you would have been required to leave more time to place this with your milliner. For future reference it is advisable to allow at least 4-6 weeks before the occasion, the earlier the better due to the popularity of Ascot, as you may be required to go for several fittings during the process.
Some of our favourite milliners to check out include;
Jane Taylor London, a favourite of the Royal family including the Duchess of Cambridge and Princess Eugenie.
Rosie Olivia Millinery, on sale in Fenwicks, Bond Street.
Gina Foster Millinery, based in Portobello Road, Gina’s hats have been featured in Vogue Russia, Tatler, Brides, Grazia and Style to name a few.
Stephen Jones Millinery, considered one of the world’s most iconic milliners.
Philip Treacy London, the famous Irish milliner Philip Treacy has made hats for everyone from Elizabeth Taylor to Lady Gaga.
Emily London, we love Emily’s beautiful feminine designs, her website is gorgeous!
Fenwicks Bond Street branch have a fantastic selection of hats and headwear.
If you’re wearing your hat at an angle be sure to work out which side of the head you wish to wear it, this can affect your blowdry style and make up options.
Consider how the hat will be attached- by comb, headband or elastic? If it is elastic you must ensure that the colour matches your hair. All of these will affect the way you style your hair and will need to be thought out beforehand.
If you’re having a blowdry with us don’t forget to bring your headpiece to your appointment, our stylists at our Kensington salon are happy to advise on blowdry styles. ‘The Maui’ blowdry featuring tropical waves from our new Spring/Summer 2016 styles would be a great look to show your hat off. Or why not try one of our summer up-dos (see previous blog post)?
Remember you are going to be wearing your hat all day so you need to feel comfortable and confident. If you like veiling make sure it doesn’t obscure your vision or irritate you during the day. The same applies for larger hat trimmings such as feathers or quills. Having said this, embrace the opportunity to make a statement, it is rare that we get to wear hats everyday and it is a chance for you to be creative and try something new, so go for it!
Ensure you have a hat box to store and protect your hat before and after the big day.
And finally don’t let the rules stop you from enjoying yourself. The most important thing is that you feel confident and comfortable and have a wonderful day.
Give us a call now on 020 7244 9499 to discuss your blowdry preferences and book in for race day, we hope to see you soon!
For more info on Royal Ascot or to book tickets go to: