Why the Queen wore white on Duchess Camilla's wedding day

The royals had a civil ceremony followed by a blessing

Nichola Murphy

A royal wedding is the perfect occasion to see the royal family dress to the nines, but one colour that tends to be off-limits is white. When the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall tied the knot on 9 April 2005, the Queen waived this rule and stepped out in a stunning pale ensemble.

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Prince Charles and Duchess Camilla got married in a civil ceremony at Windsor Guildhall, Berkshire, before holding a service of blessing at St. George's Chapel at Windsor Castle.

It is tradition for brides to wear white dresses, a trend thought to have been started by Queen Victoria in 1840, but Camilla opted for two more unconventional outfits which were both designed by Anna Valentine and Antonia Robinson. 

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The bride looked elegant for the civil ceremony, wearing a beautiful cream silk chiffon dress with a matching coat and a wide-brimmed straw hat by Philip Treacy. 

She later changed into a pale blue chiffon gown with a long-sleeved, gold-embroidered coat over the top that matched her gold feathered hat by the same milliner. 


The bride wore a cream silk chiffon dress for her civil ceremony

The Queen and Prince Philip did not attend the civil wedding ceremony but did join the service of blessing. Although it is customary for guests to avoid any white clothing, to prevent upstaging the bride, Her Majesty was pictured in a creamy white coat and hat with a subtle yellow fleck, teamed with black gloves, bag and shoes. 

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It was a departure from the usual bold colours the monarch has worn to other nuptials, including her summery lemon outfit for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's wedding and her radiant lime green look for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex's big day.


Camilla changed into a pale blue gown for the blessing

The Queen's choice of outfit for her son's nuptials could have been because Duchess Camilla had changed into a coloured wedding dress for the occasion, so it didn't clash with her look.

This marked both of the royals' second weddings – between 1973 and 1995, the Duchess was married to Andrew Parker Bowles, with whom she shares children Laura and Tom, while Charles was married to his late wife Princess Diana from 1981 and 1996, during which time they welcomed Prince William and Prince Harry.

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