The Queen looks out onto the water with Prince Philip. All flowers were from the Queen’s gardens.
The garlands had a patriotic colour theme.
Today, Queen Elizabeth II led a flotilla of more than 1,000 boats along the River Thames to mark her Diamond Jubilee. This is only the second time in history that a monarch has celebrated a 60-year rein on the throne (The Queen’s great grandmother Queen Victoria celebrated the same achievement back in 1896.)
The River Pageant:
Onboard The Spirit of Chartwell, at the centrepiece of the flotilla, the Queen was accompanied by immediate members of the Royal Family, including the Duke and the Duchess of Cambridge.
Catherine talks to Camilla as the queen looks out onto the water with Prince Philip.
You can see William is in the background.
Meanwhile, The Duke of York, his daughters Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie and the Earl and Countess of Wessex were close behind, onboard the paddle Steamer “Havengore”, while the Middleton family travelled onboard the paddle steamer “Elizabethan”. (If you’d like to read about Pippa’s outfit, click here.)
The Spirit of Chartwell:
Let’s take a quick look at the ornate gold flourishes on of The Spirit of Chartwell – aren’t they magnificent?
A bit of information about The Spirit of Chartwell from the Press Association:
“The 64 metre-long cruiser has a top speed of 11 knots … rich red drapes decorating its sides and its bow [displays] the Queen’s cipher, EIIR, below a crown with golden floral displays around it. It has a luxury interior designed to evoke the grandeur of the 1929 Cote d’Azur Pullman railway carriages, complete with artefacts from the original train and great ocean liners.”
“Flowers from the Queen’s gardens … adorn the barge and take as their theme the Commonwealth, the Queen’s 1953 Coronation and the Gold State Coach. Gardeners’ World horticulturist Rachel de Thame created the floral displays which have a red, gold and purple colour scheme.”
A look at the boats on the River Thames:
Boats out on the River Thames, all part of the Diamond Jubilee pageant.
We’re here to discuss Kate’s outfit after all – so let’s get down to business!
For this grand occasion, Kate chose a red dress by one of her favourte designers, Alexander McQueen. It looks like Kate had the design tailored specifically for her, as the dress originally was sleeveless, and is clearly shorter than the original. Below we show you the McQueen dress on the catwalk model in 2010 and X-Factor judge Tulisa in 2011:
Reality star Kim Kardashian also wore the sleeveless, shorter version of the red McQueen dress last October. Click here to see Kim.
You might notice that Kate’s sister Pippa wore blue, while mum Carole wore white – we wonder if the trio concocted this plan intentionally?
Is Kate’s dress for sale? Can I buy it? Sadly not. Early sources indicate that Kate’s dress was customised from the dress shown above, which formed part of the Alexander McQueen 2011 collection. The dress is no longer on the McQueen website for sale, but this dress with a peplum skirt is available in their current collection, ideal if you’d like something similar:
The gorgeous lady behind the Duchess of Cambridge Style blog also shares pictures of a few different variations of the McQueen dress with us - click here to see.
Kate wore her trusty L.K. Bennett Sledge heels with the red ensemble – we’re thinking these must be long lasting and comfy, as she’s never seen out of them (that or she owns hunreds of pairs!)
Kate also wore her Kiki citrine drop earrings and a maritime-themed brooch, which features two dolphins positioned next to a crown. The brooch was possibly a gift from the Royal Navy Submarine Service, though the brooches are available to buy online.
Kate’s matching red hat was by Sylvia Fletcher. Did you think Kate’s had resembed the Maple leaf piece she wore on Canada Day last year? So did we, and it turns out Fletcher designed both pieces.
Eagle-eyed fans might have noticed that Kate carried a scarf or pashmina early on in the parade… I’m informed it’s made of Strathearn tartan – a nod to her Scottish title the Countess of Strathearn!
Finally, Kate carried a red clutch bag with bow, very similar to the Alexander McQueen bag below, minus the skull detailing:
With thanks to Anna from My Small Obsessions and @RoyalReporter on Twitter and the official pageant website for lots of the information in this post today!
Re-live (or catch up with) moments from the Pageant: