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5 Ascot outfit ideas that are actually pretty major for 2024

Nail the 'Royal Enclosure' dress code in these race day ready looks...

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Chloe Gallacher
Style Writer
June 3, 2024
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Known for its impeccable standards and timeless charm, Royal Ascot effortlessly combines the thrill of horse racing with a celebration of exquisite sartorial style. This year promises to be no different, as fashion-forward attendees embrace the opportunity to showcase their elegance and creativity within the bounds of the event's unforgivingly formal dress code.

As the racecourse prepares to host one of the most prestigious events of the British social season, well-heeled fashion enthusiasts from around the world eagerly await to see the likes of the Princess of Wales and the world’s most glamorous equine loving socialites and race enthusiast A-listers will be wearing.

Princess Kate at Ascot 2022
Princess Kate at Ascot in 2022

What should I wear to Royal Ascot?

Fashion lovers attending the Royal Enclosure can expect to don dresses or skirts of ‘modest’ length, exuding grace and sophistication is a must. While vibrant colours and bold patterns are welcomed, necklines need to be equally demure, and spaghetti straps or strapless designs are to be avoided lest you find yourself on the wrong side of an over zealous steward. 

Former Hello! Fashion cover star and model Hana Cross at Ascot 2023© Dave Benett
Former Hello! Fashion cover star and model Hana Cross at Ascot 2023

Hats are an absolute must, completing the quintessential race day look. As of 2017 ladies are now permitted to explore the world of jumpsuits, as long as they adhere to the guidelines of length and coverage. If you’re really brave you can pull a Daisy Knatchbull (founder of The Deck; the first female-only tailor on Savile Row) and wear a morning suit... We love to see it. 

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What is the dress code for Ascot? 

Ascot Racecourse is well-known for its strict dress code particularly in the Royal Enclosure, which is the most prestigious and exclusive area (yep, that’s where HRH and other British royals have their box.) The Ascot Racecourse has been known to update their dress code yearly, so it's always best to check the specific dress code for the enclosure and event you plan to attend. While specific dress codes vary depending on the enclosure and the type of event, the general guidelines for the Royal Enclosure dress code traditionally include:

ASCOT, ENGLAND - JUNE 18: Maya Jama attends Royal Ascot 2022 at Ascot Racecourse on June 18, 2022 in Ascot, England. (Photo by Kirstin Sinclair/Getty Images for Royal Ascot)© Kirstin Sinclair
Maya Jama attended Royal Ascot 2022 in an avant garde pink headpiece

Royal Ascot Dress Code for ladies:

  • Dresses or skirts should be of modest length, falling just above the knee or longer.
  • Strapless, off-the-shoulder, halter neck, and spaghetti straps are not permitted.
  • Fascinators or hats are a must, with the base having a diameter of at least 4 inches (Measuring tapes have been used in the past to judge them , you’ve been warned)
  • Trouser suits are now allowed, but they should be full length and of matching colour and material.
  • Jumpsuits are permitted, but they should adhere to the same guidelines as dresses in terms of length and coverage.
  • Midriffs should be covered, and the overall look should be formal and stylish.
ASCOT, ENGLAND - JUNE 18: Betty Bachz attends Royal Ascot 2022 at Ascot Racecourse on June 18, 2022 in Ascot, England. (Photo by Kirstin Sinclair/Getty Images for Royal Ascot)© Kirstin Sinclair
Betty Bachz donned a black boater and Cartier bag to attend Royal Ascot in 2022

Royal Ascot Dress Code for gentlemen:

  • Men are required to wear black or grey morning dress, which typically includes a waistcoat, trousers, and a morning coat.
  • A top hat is a must, and it should be worn at all times.
  • A shirt and tie are necessary, and cravats are not permitted.
  • Socks should be long and of a dark colour, and formal shoes, preferably black, should be worn.

To make things a little easier for you, we have found 5 outfits that are perfect for Royal Ascot 2024: 

The Showstopper

Make a statement with a standout, yet still appropriate, dress. We love this Taller Marmo option and the floral detailing on the hat matches the colour perfectly. When it comes to accessories, opt for neutral tones so it doesn't clash, we'd add a brooch with pearl detailing on it so you can incorporate pearls through your bag and jewellery.

Taller Marmo Del Rio Turtleneck Feather-Trimmed Crepe Maxi Dress, £1,510.00, Net-A-Porter; Spin The Wheel Of Fortune Hat, £590.00, Vivien Sheriff; Maje Pointed-Toe Kitten-Heel Leather Pumps, £329.00, Selfridges; Maud Pearl Tassel Clutch, £950.00, Anya Hindmarch; 1960s Vintage Napier Faux Pearl Brooch, £135.00, Susan Caplan

The Classic

Self-Portrait is our go-to brand for occasionwear dressing. For a Royal approved outfit, opt for a tweed fabric - we love the contrasting fabrics used on this dress with the pleated skirt finish. We'd style with similarly toned, nude and dusky pink accessories for a coherent, put together look. 

Self Portrait Plissé Bouclé Midi Dress, £460.00, MyTheresa; Monaco Halo, £1,025.00, Emily-London; Skye 70 Gold/Satin Crystal Sandals, £1,425.00, Jimmy Choo; Manolo Blahnik Capri Crystal-Embellished Satin-Trimmed Lurex Clutch, £1,325.00, Net-A-Porter; Round Topaz Necklace, £98.00, Mejuri

The Jumpsuit

If a dress really isn't your style, instead opt for a jumpsuit, just ensure it follows the Ascot-appropriate dress code rules. A classic, timeless print like a polka-dot or a floral is a good way to make a simple jumpsuit more interesting and use similar colours from your look for your accessories.

Mela London Large Polka Dot Sleeveless Culotte Jumpsuit, £32.20, John Lewis; Whiteley Hats Jackie O Straw Pillbox Hat, £124.95, Hats and Caps; Loeffler Randall Bailey Pleated Lace Clutch, £275.00 £165.00, Net-A-Porter; Slinky Strappy Mid Heel Sandals, £225.00, Russell & Bromley; Fine Floating Diamond Bracelet, £525.00, Missoma

The Floral Print

Whilst florals for spring aren't groundbreaking, they are a classic print to go for. The pastel hued ditsy style on this Alessandra Rich dress gives a fresh, timeless feel, we love the ruffled sleeves and oversized collar.

Alessandra Rich Ruffled Floral-Print Silk Crepe De Chine Midi Dress, £1,710.00, Net-A-Porter; Snoxells Veiling Disc with Flowers and Feathers Fascinator, £270.00, Fenwick; Patent Croc Midi Mayfair Bag, £650.00, Aspinal of London; Clementine Heeled Mule Sandals, £248.00, Reformation; Gold Diamond Style Drop Satellite Stud Earrings, £79.00, Lily & Roo

The Boho Chic 

As we saw from the Chloé show, boho style has had a resurgence and we're so here for it. The contrasting mixed prints and colours on this LK Bennett dress channel boho but keep it Ascot appropriate. Style your accessories by picking out colours from the dress to match and keep a coherent overall feel.

Alaina Mixed Print Georgette Maxi Dress, £529.00 £396.00, LK Bennett; Mini Bow Boater Fascinator, £69.00, Phase Eight; Marbled Clutch, £65.00, & Other Stories; Heeled Leather Sandals With Straps, £120.00, Mango; Vintage Dior Onyx Glass Earrings, £695.00, Jennifer Gibson Jewellery

How we chose:

  • Style: When combing through the internet's top fashion sites for the best festival pieces, we made sure that each of our picks were chic, flattering and were perfect and appropriate for the dress codes for Ascot.
  • Price: Whether you're planning on splashing out or bagging a bargain, we've got a piece in your price range. We've curated our Ascot outfits using a mix of high-street brands and luxe designer labels.

Why you should trust me:

I am Hello! Fashion’s Style Writer with seven years of experience within the fashion journalism industry. I have a minimalist style myself, but a love for fashion and spotting upcoming trends, coveted pieces and scouring online for irresistible new-in finds.

HELLO!'s selection is editorial and independently chosen – we only feature items our editors love and approve of. HELLO! may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page. To find out more visit our FAQ page.

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