Royal fashion — specifically, royal ‘countrycore’ — is trending once again. Rachel Thomson, Managing Director of Humes Outfitters, shares her top tips on how to turn your country attire into something fit for a king or queen.
With the coronation of King Charles and Queen Camilla taking place earlier this month, people across the country (and arguably the rest of the world) are freshly obsessed with all things royal. And nowhere is this more apparent than in the world of fashion, as evidenced by videos on ‘royal fashion’ amassing over 354 million views on TikTok. Eagle-eyed fans have been analysing and recreating the elegant, often equestrian-inspired outfits of royal favourites like Kate or Pippa Middleton, Princess Diana, or even the late Queen herself.
This renewed appreciation for classic country apparel also ties into one of 2023’s most prominent fashion trends, known as ‘quiet luxury’. Loosely defined by Vogue as a synonym for elevated basics, this lends itself particularly well to the high-quality staples that make up any country-inspired wardrobe. So, how can you channel this classic, royal aesthetic into your own outfits this year?
Formal attire for the royals tends to be very upscale and elegant, but you can still bring this glamorous aesthetic into your everyday life by channelling your favourite royal’s off-duty looks and elevating them with finishing touches. Off-duty royal basics can range from a simple outfit of jeans, a shirt, loafers, and a blazer, or more practical, equestrian-inspired items like riding boots and a waxed jacket from iconic brands like Barbour. Kate Middleton is often praised for how effortlessly she updates classic country style with a more modern, laidback twist, and she tends to opt for skinny jeans or tailored trousers paired with a plain blouse or cosy knitted jumper when not attending more formal engagements.
Shooting and riding continue to be a firm favourite for any country lover, but particularly within Britain’s most famous family. Bringing elements of these outdoor pursuits into your wardrobe is, therefore, a sure-fire way to create the regal, countrycore aesthetic. Think tweed jackets, waistcoats, gilets, and leather riding boots, which can all be as practical and durable as they are timeless and chic.
Hats don’t just have to be reserved for a day at the races — stepping up your country-inspired outfit can be as easy as adding accessories like a statement hat to bring some extra flair and interest to a classic ensemble. Fedora or trilby hats make an excellent everyday option, but you can always opt for something with a wider brim to create more impact. As any look at country fashion will tell you, earth tones like chocolate brown, olive green, or sandy beige are always a great choice. However, if you want to brighten things up with a pop of colour, why not opt for hats in rich merlot or royal blue shades or styles decorated with pheasant or peacock feathers?
When it comes to jewellery, the best way to elevate a country outfit, just like the royals is by keeping it simple and sleek. Investing in a set of delicate gold bracelets, sleeper hoops, or a slim watch means you can incorporate high-quality accessories designed to elevate every outfit — the epitome of quiet luxury in action! Silk scarves are also excellent for bringing some elegance to an everyday country ensemble, adding a glossy texture, patterns, and a dash of colour in one fell swoop.
For men, a classic statement watch, pocket squares, silk ties, and tie clips can all elevate a standard suit ensemble into something more regal, as well as durable, high-quality shoes like brogues, Oxfords, or loafers (which are ideal for warmer weather).
Invest in quality staples
Despite the royals’ glamorous appearances at events and engagements, everyday country life is all about practicality and durability. When creating your best royal-inspired fashion looks, it’s, therefore, best to start out with high-quality, well-made staples from reputable country brands. In line with the ethos of quiet luxury, this won’t involve bold logos or obvious branding but rather enduring pieces that have gained an instantly recognisable style over the years, such as Princess Anne’s much-loved Dubarry boots.
Staples such as a set of neutral-toned shirts or blouses, tailored trousers, slim-leg jeans, and simple jumpers will create a great base for your country wardrobe, and you can give them the royal treatment by opting for high-quality, luxurious materials like linen, cashmere, or lambswool. Investing in well-made, timeless pieces like these — including outerwear like a tailored coat, jacket, or blazer — means you can create a capsule, country-inspired wardrobe that any royal would be happy to sport!
If you’re obsessing over royal ‘countrycore’ as much as we are, use these top tips to create a wardrobe your favourite royals would be proud to step out in! For more expert style advice and trend forecasts, check out the rest of our fashion articles at British Style Society.