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Duchess Sophie is a vision in fit-and-flare florals as she marks special anniversary

The Duchess of Edinburgh appeared at the Order of the Garter ceremony alongside the royal family


sophie wessex blue hat
Fiona Ward
Acting Fashion and Beauty Editor
19 June 2023
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The Duchess of Edinburgh looked beautiful in candy pink florals as she attended the Order of the Garter service at St George's Chapel alongside other members of the royal family on Monday.

Sophie chose royal-favourite designer Emilia Wickstead for her chic look, wearing a fit-and-flare dress from the brand in a pretty botanical print. The 'Mara' dress is made in structured taffeta and costs £1,628.

The Duchess teamed her look with a bold pink Jane Taylor headpiece and neutral accessories including a clutch bag and pointed heels. She wore her blonde hair in a chic updo teamed with glowing makeup as she was pictured outside the chapel with the Princess of Wales ahead of the service.

Kate and Sophie watch Order of the Garter proceedings from the porch© Getty
Sophie looked beautiful in an Emilia Wickstead dress and statement hat as she was pictured alongside the Princess of Wales

It was an extra special day for Sophie and her husband Prince Edward, since the special service also coincided with their 24th wedding anniversary – and was held in their wedding venue! The royal couple married on 19 June 1999 at St George's Chapel in Windsor Castle.

No doubt Sophie and Edward were happy to mark their anniversary on such a special day with family – since Monday's Order of the Garter service marked King Charles' first as monarch. 

Kate and Sophie share a laugh on Garter Day 2023© Getty
Kate and Sophie laughed together outside the chapel

About the Order of the Garter service

The Order of the Garter is the oldest and most senior Order of Chivalry in Britain, established by King Edward III nearly 700 years ago. The Order includes the King, who is Sovereign of the Garter, the Queen, several members of the Royal Family, and 18 knights or ladies chosen in recognition of their work. 

Knights of the Garter are chosen personally by the King to honour those who have held public office, who have contributed in a particular way to national life or who have served the Sovereign personally – for 2023's ceremony, the Baroness Ashton of Upholland GCMG will be installed as a Lady Companion of the Most Noble Order of the Garter, and the Lord Patten of Barnes CH will be installed as a Knight Companion of the Most Noble Order of the Garter.

The Duke and Duchess of Edinburgh's 1999 royal wedding

Prince Edward and his royal bride Sophie Rhys-Jones (a former PR consultant) married on 19 June 1999, with Sophie looking beautiful in a silk organza coat dress designed by Samantha Shaw.

Sophie's dress was decorated with over 325,000 pearls and crystal beads – some of which lined her V-neck, cuffs and skirt while others dotted across the fabric. However, they weren't shaped in any particular meaningful motifs like many other royal ladies.

Duchess Sophie and Prince Edward on their wedding day in 199
Sophie and Edward on their wedding day in 1999
prince edward and sophie wessex walking out the chapel on their wedding day© Getty Images
Duchess Sophie's bridal gown was made by Samantha Shaw

The slightly more relaxed royal wedding saw guests wearing formal daywear to the service, but no hats – other than the groom's mother Queen Elizabeth and sister Princess Anne, who both wore fascinators.

Meanwhile, Sophie wore a tiara made up of four open scrollwork motifs. The piece of jewellery came from the Queen's private collection and was designed and remodelled by the Crown Jeweller, David Thomas of Asprey and Garrard.

READ NEXT: Duchess Sophie wows in smart dress and most spectacular headpiece

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