I’m thrilled to welcome Alicia Healey (aka The Lady’s Maid) to Royally Broke for a guest post today. Alicia is a former royal lady’s maid, having spent four years working at Buckingham Palace. She has also traveled extensively around the world, working as a traveling lady’s maid for high-profile clients including a Middle Eastern royal family.
Her first book, Wardrobe Wisdom from a Royal Lady’s Maid: How to Dress and Take Care of Your Clothes, will be released October 25 in the UK and January 1 in the United States (you can pre-order in the UK here and the U.S. here). Stay tuned for a 2019 discussion in my royal book club, Royally Good Reads!
I’ve been following Alicia on Instagram for quite a while and her fashion advice is always spot on. If you love royal style (and I know you do since you’re here!) definitely give her a follow. Thank you to Alicia for stopping by the blog – take it away!
Royal Wedding fever is heating up this week with the wedding of Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank taking place at St. George’s chapel, Windsor Castle on Friday. As with any wedding, fashion is always at the forefront. There is much speculation about what the bride will wear and anticipation for the royal guest catwalk entering St. George’s Chapel. I for one will be keen to see how everyone dresses for an autumn royal wedding. So, with royal wedding style on the mind, here are some ideas of what to wear if you are gracing a wedding with your presence this fall and don’t have the budget of a royal princess!
Planning an outfit for an event should be fun, but it can sometimes be stressful if you are on a budget and want to look coordinated and stylish as a wedding guest. It’s always easier if you have a dress or colour scheme in mind that you want to wear and to build your look around that, otherwise the options of what to wear are literally endless. While spring and summer weddings call for fresh florals and pastels, autumn/winter is the perfect time to be wearing rich jewel tones.
My favourite colours for this time of year are autumnal berry pinks and burgundy reds. Matchy-matchy outfits are popular with the Duchess of Cambridge and can look very chic, but it’s also very stylish to vary the tones within the same colour palette – mixing burgundy with raspberry pink or red, for example, to give some variation of colour, and to lighten the look.
In this montage below I’ve pictured two pretty dresses that are perfect for a fall wedding. The top raspberry pink lace dress is by Chi Chi London – a great label for affordable occasion dresses. On the right is a red lace dress by Gal Meets Glam. Both of these dresses could be covered up with the berry wool wrap coat by H&M. This style of coat – the belted wrap – is a great cover-up for event dresses but versatile enough to add to your casual wardrobe, so that it’s not a one-hit wonder and you can get lots of repeat wear from it. If you’re attending an evening wedding, this strapless number pictured would look great with a faux fur cropped jacket to keep the evening chill at bay.
Hat hire is a great option for budget dressing – this Juliette Botterill hat would retail at around £500, but hiring it for the day will cost you a small fraction of that price – it’s much more economical if you are a social butterfly and have a calendar full of fancy events for which you need to find frocks and bonnets! This hat will go with all of the dresses here – if you’re wearing it with the pink or red dress, make sure you have something else burgundy within the outfit – either bag or shoes or jewellery, in order to balance out the look. Closed toe court shoes are always the preferable royal style of shoe for a formal day event, but if your wedding is a day to eve occasion, you could always kick the courts off and slip on some sandals for a more glamorous and evening-appropriate look.
Jewel greens and sapphire blues are also great colours for autumn/winter weddings. Both colours will complement either matching colour accessories, nude or metallic gold/silver. This emerald green dress and coat would be a nice festive option for a December wedding; I’ve added a poinsettia brooch for an extra touch of festive sparkle. Brooches are a great way of dressing up your winter coat to make it more ‘event ready’ and they can be really inexpensive – you could find a one-off piece from vintage jewellery markets or second-hand shops that will add a unique touch to your outfit even if everyone else has the same coat. If you’re wearing one block colour, it’s a good idea to add some texture with a patterned or beaded bag, like this one from Zara, or textured shoes – these metallic ones are by Coast.
Another great cover-up option for formal dresses is the cape jacket – a really stylish look that will provide warmth en route to your venue whilst still allowing a glimpse of your outfit underneath.is a great budget buy and will match perfectly with every colour dress, and black too, so is a great purchase for multiple wears. It gives the casual chic look of “shrobing” without the risk of the jacket falling off!
For more fashion updates on the upcoming royal wedding and style ideas for your autumn/winter wardrobe, you can find me on Instagram: @theladysmaid. My bookis available to order now and contains lots of tips on how to dress for different events, how to organise your wardrobe efficiently and how to take care of your clothes.
Thank you again, Alicia for these beautiful outfit ideas! While you wait for Friday’s big event, you can check out her latest blog post with suggestions on outfits for the royal family to wear to Eugenie’s wedding. Also, if you missed my posts about traveling to Windsor for Harry and Meghan’s wedding you can find them here:
Have a great week!