Celebrity Style

10 Queen Elizabeth Looks That Show How Her Style Has Evolved

From 1947 until today.

Queen Elizabeth's fashion transformation over the years is rooted in her evolving approach to color.
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Queen Elizabeth II just celebrated her 95th birthday. Born into the Royal Family, she, herself, has held the seat at the head since 1953. That’s nearly 70 years in power. And almost seven decades of public events. She’s been known to stick to the Royal dress code to-a-T. What that means, on most occasions, is a pair of tights, low-heeled pumps, a mid-length dress, and a matching hat.

Though the Queen sometimes wears prints, it is the solid bold colors for which she is best known. Often matching her dress, coat, and hat, to splice together her looks over even a week’s time is to create a stunning rainbow.

When it comes to jewelry, Queen Elizabeth II keeps it simple. She is known for her brooches (many of which contain a hidden meaning or important story), and largely sticks to pearls by day and gems by night when it comes to her bracelet, necklace, and earring combination. And, of course, for special occasions the tiaras are everything.

Over the years, though she’s more often opted for long sleeves over off-the-shoulder gowns, lowered her heel height, and incorporated more of her signature hats into her everyday looks, her style has remained largely unchanged. In short, the Queen is just as much of a style icon today as she ever was.

From her adolescence to today, here are Queen Elizabeth II’s best looks, in color.

1

June 1, 2020: Prince Philip’s 99th Birthday

Courtesy of Buckingham Palace

In one of their final public appearances before his death in April 2021, Queen Elizabeth II celebrated her husband’s 99th birthday at Windsor Castle, wearing a gray and yellow floral dress and her go-to single strand of pearls.

2

June 19, 2018: Royal Ascot

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Queen Elizabeth II chose a sunny look for the Summer celebrations at the Royal Ascot in 2018, slipping into a blue and yellow floral dress that matched her buttoned-up yellow lapel coat and hat (dressed with matching blue flowers).

3

December 25, 2017: St. Mary Magdalene Church, Sandringham, UK

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On this occasion, the Queen chose a green and orange printed floral dress, from which she took the bright citrus hue to which she matched her single-breasted coat and hat.

4

1980: Sandringham, UK

Anwar Hussein/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Even for a relaxing day with her corgis, the Queen chose to slip into a buttoned-up bright green coat that matches her printed dress that is only slightly visible at the cuffs.

5

July 1979: Safari in Zambia

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On one of the few photographed moments where the Queen wore trousers in lieu of a skirt or dress, she chose a pair of khaki-colored pants and a printed jacket for a safari in Zambia in 1979.

6

February 1975: Mexico

Serge Lemoine/Hulton Royals Collection/Getty Images

In a rare showing of print from head-to-toe, Queen Elizabeth II chose a bright yellow polka-dot dress, belted at the waist, with a matching turban on a Royal visit to Mexico.

7

December 10, 1962: Premier of Lawrence of Arabia, London

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This gown was designed by Norman Hartnell and made of Peau De Soie taffeta, trimmed with Duchess satin. It was famously worn to the 1962 London premiere of Lawrence of Arabia. Nearly 60 years later, it would be the gown that her granddaughter, Princess Beatrice, would borrow for her wedding day.

8

June 5, 1961: President and First Lady John F. Kennedy and Jackie Visit London

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In 1961, for a visit from President and First Lady Kennedy, the Queen chose a blue tulle gown and white opera gloves, perfectly nipped in at the waist in a true Princess-style, dressed-up silhouette that was popular for evening events at the time.

9

June 2, 1953: Coronation

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For her Coronation in 1953, the 25-year-old wore a gown that took eight months to research, design, and create. It featured not only the floral emblems of the countries of the UK, but also those of the other states in the Commonwealth of Nations. It was designed by Norman Hartnell, crafted of satin, per the Queen’s request. She has worn her Coronation gown on a handful of occasions afterwards as well.

10

July 10, 1947: Official Engagement Photos

Hulton Archive/Hulton Royals Collection/Getty Images

In Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip Mountbatten’s official engagement photos, the Queen chose a pale pink dress with subtle bow accents that she paired with slightly open-toe pumps.