Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall and Prince Charles are celebrating their 17th wedding anniversary today. The Duchess wore two dresses for the occasion – one for the state wedding ceremony and the other for the church blessing. However it was Camilla’s gigantic hats that really stole the headlines at the time.
Traditionally, royal women wear a tiara to their wedding, whether they were born royal or were just marrying into the family.
However, Camilla wore two Phillip Treacy hats instead for her special day.
Louisa Rogers, a lecturer in Fashion Communication at Northumbria University and also runs her own fashion brand Studio Courtenay, spoke exclusively to Express.co.uk about the Duchess’ decision to not wear a tiara, as is usually expected for royal weddings.
She said: “Camilla’s choice to wear a hat over a tiara, points to a conscious effort to play down the traditionally feminine and traditionally royal choice of headgear.
“Millinery is closely associated with the aristocracy so it still holds its regal connotations without being seen as too ostentatious.
“It might have been judged as being in ‘better taste’ for this reason.
“The Phillip Treacy design itself is simple but avant-garde, in a muted beige tone that complemented the print on her longline coat.
“The feathers are lightweight and resemble wheat sheaves curving around the head – something Treacy described as ‘perfect and natural.’
“I would suggest that this choice of materials was also to make Camilla feel more approachable and down-to-earth as she had been villainised in the press since the affair had been common knowledge for some time.”
Karine Laudort, another expert fashion commentator and runner of the Keeping Up With Kay Flawless blog also spoke exclusively to Express.co.uk about Camilla’s headgear.
She said: “The Duchess of Cornwall chose to wear two hats designed by her favourite hat designer, Irish hatmaker Philip Treacy, on her wedding day as opposed to a tiara which she wore at her first wedding.
“The Duchess of Cornwall has always been one to wear memorable hats, headpieces and fascinators over the years at various official celebrations such as Zara Tindall’s wedding, Christmas Card photos or even at Meghan and Harry’s royal wedding.
She exclusively told Express.co.uk: “Lots of brides-to-be feel stressed at the thought of choosing a wedding dress for a second marriage, but even with the added pressure of the whole world watching her every move, the Duchess of Cornwall got it exactly right.
“It was never going to be easy to compete with Diana’s iconic wedding dress, so she went in the complete opposite direction, stayed true to her own style and created an understated bridal look that was both regal but also low-key.
“Whilst she wasn’t typically bridal in her appearance, she did follow the royal tradition of having two wedding dresses – a modest knee-length dress in cream with a matching jacket and hat for her ceremony, before switching to a pale blue floor-length gown with embroidered coat and a very stylish headpiece for the blessing.
“Both of the dresses were designed by Robinson Valentine for the Duchess, and while neither was expected of the future Queen Consort, they remained well within the bounds of safe royal style – not an easy look to nail!
“The Duchess finished her look with a gold and diamond-tipped bridal headpiece by Philip Treacy, which I took as her own personal way of saying, ‘I might not get to wear a tiara like the other royal brides, but see if I care’.”