60 Years of Fashion-Forward Color Statements by Queen Elizabeth II
From Primrose Yellow for Will and Kate's wedding in April 2011 to a tasteful Lilac Snow number during a visit to Northumberland, Queen Elizabeth II has long cheered up most any event she's attended in pretty Easter Egg hues - from her elegantly-hatted head to her comfortably-clad feet.
"The Queen’s decision to favour one colour in every outfit is a strong style statement," notes Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the color authority the Pantone Colour Institute. "Monochromatic colour schemes make the wearer appear taller, delivering a more stately air – perfect given that Queen Elizabeth is not tall at 5'4. Choosing one colour theme also ensures the outfit does not detract attention from the wearer – which is particularly important if you’re the Queen."
To mark six decades of keen queenly interest in color, Pantone teamed up with ad agency Leo Burnett on a limited edition color guide of her most memorable color-color coordinated choices, complete with Pantone Color references and the date and location where said outfit appeared. "When you see footage, or read commentary, of Queen Elizabeth on her official engagements, at a Royal Wedding or even watching her horse race at the Derby, there is always mention of what she’s wearing," explains Justin Tindall, executive creative director at Leo Burnett London. "It has been an ever-present subtext to the 60-year reign of our Monarch. The Diamond Jubilee Colour Guide is a celebration of that reign through colour and its meaning – a blend of Leo Burnett’s creativity and Pantone’s expertise in honour of the Diamond Jubilee."
PANTONE 13-0755 Primrose Yellow "The Queen’s royal wedding outfit from 2011 was Primrose Yellow. Yellow is a colour that speaks to the future with hope and optimism. William's wedding was a time of national celebration and this choice of yellow complements the joyous mood of the occasion. It’s a colour that is high visibility (befitting a queen), while still not detracting from the bride."
PANTONE 13-4411 Crystal Blue "Blue is a colour staple in the Queen’s wardrobe, it’s a colour that communicates constancy and it is also symbolic of her devotion to the British people. Blues traditionally have calming properties and she is often seen wearing them during difficult times. Blue is also seen as de-stressing so it’s no surprise she was sporting a serene blue to a Royal Garden Party in 2010."
PANTONE 16-2124 Pink Carnation "Queen Elizabeth wore lighter tones of pink more frequently when she was younger, adding softness to her role as Queen and make her seem less austere, for example the PANTONE 16-2124 Pink Carnation she wore to the Chelsea Garden Party in 1967. In recent years however, she has been seen in trendier bright pinks, defying her age and communicating that she is a monarch modern in thought and spirit."
PANTONE 13-5414 Ice Green "During the Queen’s landmark state visit to Ireland, the first since the country gained independence in the 1920s, she was seen in a cool shade of green. Her colour choice echoed the sentiment of her visit as green is widely seen to symbolise new beginnings, fresh thoughts and rejuvenation."
- Lesley Scott
(images: pantone guide at top & top right via Dexigner; Queen Elizabeth in yellow; wearing blue to a garden party; pretty in pink in 1967; in green in Ireland; lilac for Northumberland; with Kate Middleton in "Cabaret" pink - Pantone 18-2140)