When you think about an afternoon in the British countryside, what comes to mind? For me, it involves an afternoon of horses, rolling hills and preferably a fascinator hat. Now that we’re in March, those three events combine in a once-a-year event called the Cheltenham Festival, an event on the National Hunt Racing calendar in the UK where horse racing is the main attraction.
It’s quite popular with my well-to-do British colleagues, and unsurprisingly, Kate has been spotted at Cheltenham numerous times over the years. We thought that as we celebrate the start of March, and with the 2016 Cheltenham event coming up from the 15th to the 18th of this month, that we would share some of our favourite Kate looks from the past decade (!) of her appearances at Cheltenham – and of course offer modern day repliKates – so that any of us can feel like we’re spending the afternoon at the races… Or just look like we are!
Let’s look back at Kate’s looks from Cheltenham over the years.
Kate at Cheltenham in 2006
Long before she was the Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton stepped out to Cheltenham in a Katherine Hooker jacket – that eagle eyes may recognize in its original form before Kate had it shortened – to attend Cheltenham for what appears to be the first time in 2006. While I certainly think we can all agree we will never see this fur hat again, it must have been a cold day! She paired the coat with gloves and a brown scarf and bag.
Kate at Cheltenham 2007
Kate appeared on Opening Day with William on opening day in a tweed Katherine Hooker ensemble, with a collared shirt underneath and black boots finishing off the look. She also wore Chanel sunglasses and accessorized with a black purse. I’m often surprised looking at this picture at how Kate’s hemlines were much longer in her earlier days of dating William.
Kate appeared the next day as well, again in Katherine Hooker, in a gorgeous robin’s egg blue blazer with a brown and blue scarf and brown beret hat. One of our favourite classic “Kate Middleton” looks.
Kate at Cheltenham 2008
Kate appeared at the 2008 Cheltenham Festival wearing not Katherine Hooker! We saw her attend in a blue Ted Baker trench coat and all black accessories. This coat was recycled years later for the Canada tour.
Kate at Cheltenham 2013
During Kate’s pregnancy with Prince George, we saw her step out to enjoy the races with William and friends at the event. Looking every inch the Duchess, she paired a double breasted Joseph coat with the a Betty Boop hat from Lock & Co, brown Rumba boots from Aquatalia by Marvin K and a matching brown clutch bag.
So how can you incorporate a little of the Cheltenham Festival into your life if you’re unable to attend the races? Here are three tips for enjoying the races and doing what Kate would do!
Cheltenham Tip #1 : Get Together With Friends
During each of the Duchess’ trips to Cheltenham, she was photographed giggling, laughing and enjoying time with friends. It’s a great excuse to invite friends you’ve not seen for awhile and get together.
Cheltenham Tip #2 : Get in on the Action!
Would Kate bet on horses? You bet she would! She’s often been photographed with the little betting slips in her hand, and getting in on the action. Even if you’re not attending, you can feel like you are and bet on the horses at the event (and the massive payouts!) You can do that here:
Cheltenham Tip # 3 : Put a Hat on It
Kate has always photographed wearing a hat at Cheltenham – be they casual hats from before her wedding to the regal Lock & Co. toppers afterwards. It’s a great time to try out a new style. Take a risk too, remember Kate once wore a fur cossack hat!
What are you waiting for… Why not throw a party with your nearest and dearest, put on a hat and place your wagers? It’s most definitely what Kate would do.
Here are some of our Editorial takes on some cute Cheltenham picks to make the Festival look your own:
Modern Camel Neutrals:
Classic White and Blue: