The Queen’s staff are sworn to secrecy about her daily outfits for Royal Ascot, her confidante and personal adviser has revealed.
Angela Kelly, 51, claims she has to ‘physically lock away’ Her Majesty’s chosen ensemble in her bedroom to avoid the secret getting out as punters bet hundreds of thousands on what colour she’ll wear to the racecourse.
In her new book The Other Side of the Coin: The Queen, the Dresser and the Wardrobe, which is out on October 29, Angela – who started in the Royal Household in 1994 as assistant dresser – revealed they even go so far as to plant ‘decoys.’
‘Every day of the equestrian festival, hundreds of thousand are staked on the colour of The Queen’s hat or dress,’ the Telegraph reports.
Her Majesty’s assistant dresser, Angela Kelly, 51, has revealed she plants ‘decoys’ when it comes to the Queen’s Royal Ascot outfits to prevent word getting out on what colour she’ll wear. Pictured, the Monarch during day five of Royal Ascot at Ascot Racecourse on Saturday June 22, 2019
Personal Assistant and Senior Dresser to the Queen Angela Kelly leaving the staff in December 2018 at the Goring Hotel
Queen Elizabeth II attending the Richard Quinn show, at London Fashion Week, in February 2018, with Angela Kelly (left) next to her
To keep the secret under wraps, Angela and the Queen prepare her ensembles one week before the event, before they’re then placed in hanging bags and hat boxes in her room at Windsor Castle.
And to be extra sure that the chosen outfit isn’t leaked ahead of time, Angela told of another strategy used to throw staff off the scent.
‘At least three hats are left out on display in the workroom which can be seen by any staff who walk along the corridor,’ the paper reports.
‘These hats have nothing to with Ascot; they are simply put out as decoys to stop an inside job at the bookies.’
Her Majesty enters the winners enclosure and presents the Queen Elizabeth II Stakes Trophy at the QIPCO British Champions Day at Ascot Racecourse in Berkshire on 20 October 2018
The pair then leave the decision until the last minute, and only choose which of the selected outfits Her Majesty will wear the morning of the event.
Angela’s full title is Her Majesty’s Personal Adviser and Curator (The Queen’s Jewellery, Insignias and Wardrobe), Senior Dresser and In-house Designer.
The Monarch personally gave her in-house designer her blessing to tell the story of their ‘unparalleled bond’.
The unprecedented move means Angela has become the first serving member of the Royal Household to receive permission to write a book about her time with the Monarch.
The book will contain never-before-seen photos of the head of state from her private collection.
Angela rarely gives interviews but once disclosed: ‘We are two typical women. We discuss clothes, make-up, jewellery.’
The Queen values the opinion of her meticulous personal assistant and has gradually over the years given her free rein when helping her create a look for an event.
Angela is credited with keeping the Queen’s style relevant, and for adding a ‘touch of bling’.
Despite the Queen’s advancing years she has been prepared to embellish her style, under Angela’s direction, as a nod to modern times.
A pair of 3D glasses worn by the Queen during a film demonstration in Canada in 2010 were given a touch of glamour by the personal assistant – Swarovski crystals forming the letter Q on their sides.
Queen Elizabeth II sits with Anna Wintour (third right) and Caroline Rush, chief executive of the British Fashion Council (BFC) (left) and royal dressmaker Angela Kelly (second right), as they view Richard Quinn’s runway show at London Fashion Week’s on 20 February 2018
The Monarch arrives with the Royal Procession on the second day of Royal Ascot at Ascot Racecourse on June 21, 2017
A spokeswoman for HarperCollins said: ‘The Queen has personally given Angela her blessing to share their unparalleled bond with the world.
‘Angela Kelly is the first serving member of the Royal Household to have been given this extraordinary permission.
‘Whether it’s preparing for a formal occasion or brightening Her Majesty’s day with a playful joke, Angela’s priority is to serve and support.
‘Sharing never-before-seen photographs – many from Angela’s own private collection – and charming anecdotes of their time spent together, this revealing book provides memorable insights into what it’s like to work closely with The Queen, to curate her wardrobe and to discover a true and lasting connection along the way.’
Samantha Cohen, who was assistant private secretary to the Queen for seven years and is the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s outgoing private secretary, said: ‘This book documents the unique working relationship between Her Majesty The Queen and the woman who has been her personal adviser and senior dresser for more than two decades: Angela Kelly.
‘It gives a rare glimpse into the demands of the job of supporting the monarch, and we gain privileged insight into a successful working relationship, characterised by humour, creativity, hard work, and a mutual commitment to service and duty.’
In 2012, Angela Kelly wrote Dressing The Queen which celebrated The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.