Ascot style lessons from the royals! See how Kate Middleton, Sophie Wessex and the Queen dress for the races

The royal family are pros at getting Ascot's dress code spot on

Sophie Hamilton

And we're nearly off! That's right ladies, the start line of Royal Ascot is in sight and that means two things: dresses and hats. The racing event of the year runs from 19-23 June at the prestigious Berkshire racecourse, with British public dressing in their finery to sip champers and bet on the horses. Ascot is known for its strict dress code – no outfits above the knee, strapless dresses are a big no no and hats or fascinators are a must. No-one does Ascot style better than the royal family, who are used to adhering to similar fashion criteria day in, day out.




The Duchess of Cambridge and Sophie Wessex are known for their impeccable chic looks at Royal Ascot, never putting a foot wrong with their outfits. The Queen has attended the annual racing event for years and loves to wear brightly coloured dresses and hats, rumour has it, so she is easily spotted by the public.




We could all learn a thing or two from the royal family's Ascot fashion sense – follow them and you'll both turn heads and tick the dress code boxes.

Go for unusual fabrics

Duchess Kate is the epitome of elegance at Royal Ascot. In 2017 she wowed in a white lace dress with matching fascinator, pretty drop earrings and taupe clutch bag and heels. We adored the modern take on a Victorian look. Kate wore a similar lace dress the year before which fell just below the knee. The cream dress was by Dolce & Gabbana and cost £2,415.

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Mix and match pastels

Zara Tindall always looks stunning at Ascot. Back in 2017 the royal chose a beautiful pale yellow dress with frill detail and teamed it with a light pink hat and grey bag. The hues worked perfectly together to give a fresh summer fell.




Pick subtle patterns

There's a fine line between overly-busy outfits and way too plain, but here Sophie Wessex and Autumn Phillips showed how to carry off patterned dresses at the races. Sophie's striped dress with pale grey hatinator is so elegant while Autumn's delicate floral pattern on her dress give a hint of colour but not too much, allowing her to team the outfit with an olive green jacket and hat. 

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Choose a flattering cut

You can't help but love Princess Eugenie's red dress. The shape flatters her curves and draws in her waist. The royal coordinated her headwear with a splash of red florals resting on top of the black hat.




Wear a wow hat

Ascot really is all about the hat and Princess Beatrice showcased a fine example with this tangerine feather style. The royal cleverly kept things simple with a pale, plain coat dress, accessorising with a fun bright orange clutch.




Keep it classic

The Queen always chooses a classic design for her Ascot appearances, from bright shades to elegant pastels. Her Majesty likes the team coat dresses with hats of the same colour. Go regal and coordinate your outfit like our very own monarch.




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