06 July 2012

Royal Fashion Awards: The Order of the Thistle Service

The service of the The Most Ancient and Most Noble Order of the Thistle (isn’t that just a deliciously medieval title?) was held yesterday. The Order of the Thistle is Scotland's highest order of chivalry, and its service resembles Garter Day in pomp and would-be-silly-under-any-other circumstance outfits. And where go the froofy hats, so go we…

Best in Day Bling
Queen Elizabeth
Is this modern emerald set my absolute favorite of the Queen’s? Nah. But I can’t complain about diamonds. Especially not when we’re looking at such a low key year for the Windsors, tiara-wise.

Best in Introductions
The Earl of Strathearn
The Thistle service usually isn’t such a big to do (media-wise), but this year the Cambridges – excuse me, the Strathearns, as they are properly known in Scotland and heavens, we must be Proper – were in the house, and there you go. The Queen decided to bestow the Thistle on William, and this was his big day to take the oath and make it official (he did receive his insignia from her last month, and wore the star at Trooping the Colour). I have to say, this debut was far more dashing than his slightly embarrassed Garter debut a few years ago.

Most in Need of Something
The Countess of Strathearn
Yeah…this isn’t doing it for me. I’m a little disappointed overall lately on the Emilia Wickstead front, which is sad. Anyway, I think Kate here just needs something. A belt to cover up that wonky bit of seaming on her waist, a different hat…something.

Best in Consistency
Lady Sarah Chatto
After temporarily abandoning her white and black wardrobe for Garter Day, Lady Sarah is back on point. Sometimes, if it isn’t broke, you don’t need to go messing with it. (Plus - star brooch alert! Like the Jardine Star's little sister.)

Best in Poise
Arthur Chatto
Lady Sarah’s in attendance at these events because her son, Arthur, is currently serving as a Page of Honour for the Queen. That means he’s tasked with tending to her train and what have you, and though he flew solo today, he’s sometimes joined by his cousin Charles Armstrong-Jones. I always find these boys to be very composed in their outfits (which are stately and traditional, but must feel a little silly to a 13-year-old boy), but this green one truly gets my praise. Forgive me, you all know I love the ceremonial, but this just makes me want a bowl of Lucky Charms. 

Best in Knights and Ladies
The Princess Royal
Left to right: the Duke of Edinburgh, the Princess Royal
It’s interesting to me that the Thistle is less frequently awarded in the royal family than the Garter, which is higher in precedence (when you look at the U.K. as a whole). So I have to aim my golf claps in Princess Anne’s direction, for being the only one of the Queen’s children in attendance (Charles had a prior engagement elsewhere; Andrew and Edward have not been awarded the Thistle). Besides, Philip is Philip, and his praise is implied.

Who wins your Thistle awards this year? 

PS: This replaces our Flashback Friday today.

Photos: Reuters/Getty Images/PA/Bauer Griffin