Royal Ascot hats are now regulated by the Official Style Guide
Every year the Royal Ascot race meeting draws attention of thousands of people. Some are fascinated by the pageantry and some by the style and elegance of the event, but everyone would agree that the traditional highlight of the past years is the variety of Royal Ascot hats and headpieces.
The history of Royal Ascot takes us back to 1711, when Queen Anne went for a horse ride near Windsor Castle. She discovered a perfect spot for “horses to gallop a full stretch”, which eventually became a famous Ascot Race course.
Nowadays, over 300,000 people attend Royal Ascot yearly, making it Europe’s most popular and glamorous race meeting.
The Queen is a frequent guest at the Royal Ascot races, having numerous horses participating each season and has won 22 times. Her Majesty’s attire is always a hot topic and each year fashionistas are speculating about the colour and style of hat she will wear.
The absolute highlight of the Royal Ascot is of course the Gold Cup, commonly known as “Ladies Day”. It is unknown why the third day of racing came to be known as Ladies Day, but legend says that the third day was traditionally the most popular and attracted a big proportion of female spectators.
Through the years, the Royal Ascot Ladies Day fashion changed dramatically and for the past decade, more visitors started to turned up wearing kooky fascinators. Whilst wearing a hat at the race is an old tradition, as it was considered impolite to not have one’s head covered in the presence of the monarch, the crazy concoctions are not and recently started to attract too much attention. As a result, this year, the Royal Ascot organisers have issued an official Style Guide prompting their visitors to embrace elegance and modesty in their attire.
So, from this year, fascinators are not permitted; neither are headpieces which do not have a solid base covering a sufficient area of the head (4 inches/10cm).
We are saying goodbye to all crazy Royal Ascot hats and hat pieces, it was great to observe the creativity and fun all these years!