Best in Surprises
I was going to tell you all about how much I love Lilibet in this vibrant cerise from Peter Enrione with an Angela Kelly hat, but every time I look at her I get lost in that brooch and can't find my way out again. This is a VERY EXCITING brooch selection, and you can obvs read all about it at the Vault (Ascot post here, full brooch post here).
Worst in FrankenHats
The Duchess of Cornwall and The Princess Royal
I'm pretty sure Camilla's hat is a perfectly plain brimmed number that just sat right down on top of another, more interesting hat, which is now trying desperately to free itself from below. (Maybe this is why the Duchess of Gloucester's hats always grow those weird stems: safety precaution! No hat's gonna risk sitting on that.) Its saving grace - on top of a busy top half to the outfit underneath - is the single color, but I still can't condone this type of hat-on-hat violence. Which is precisely why Princess Anne's hat gets the real worst in show here.
How many hats had to die in a millinery cage match to make this single mishmash of a chapeau? Somebody needs to put down the glue gun and walk away. Kudos to Anne for still fitting into an outfit from 1980 and all, but please try again in the headgear department.
Best in Statement Pieces
Most Adequate in Black and White
Lady Sarah Chatto, Autumn Phillips, Princess Michael of Kent
Okay, Sarah Chatto's is brown too, but whatever. It matters not. These are all okay. Mostly, I'd just like to know why Princess Michael didn't go all in with a half black/half white eyepatch.
Most in Need of De-Fussing
This is a bold skirt for her, and I love it! I just wish she'd cut back some of the extra fuss on the shoes and the hat so the skirt could shine, instead of being the third piece in the outfit fighting for your attention.
|Roksanda Ilincic skirt|
Best Runway Omission
I wouldn't have thought to turn a couture gown into an outfit for the races, but at least she left off the boots, which were thigh high and vinyl and all over the latest Dior couture runway. Princess Haya (daughter of the late King Hussein of Jordan, and wife of Sheikh Mohammed, ruler of Dubai) usually stops my heart at least once with her Ascot couture parade each year, but we're not quite there yet on Day 1.
|Christian Dior Spring 2015 Couture|
Best in Statement Pieces
The Countess of Wessex
Yessssss. This is how you do it! Sophie's white Emilia Wickstead dress is simple enough to let the hat take center stage, but isn't boring on its own. Second place to only Her Maj in my eyes.
Best in Gents
Prince Harry and Mike Tindall
On the one hand, the long reign of terror of Prince Harry's infamous yellow waistcoat, worn to all things for all time, is over - or, at least, temporarily interrupted by a dashing new blue number. (It won Zara Phillips' approval, saying hello in cheery yellow from Paul Castelloe.)
On the other hand, Mike Tindall's curtsey game is strong. So I'll call it a tie.
Who takes home your Ascot Best Dressed Crown for Day 1?
Photos: Via Getty Images as indicated, Moda Operandi, Style.com