According to the Queen’s chief dresser and long-time aid, Angela Kelly, "the queen is just as busy as she would be in London, with more guests to entertain."
In Kelly’s recently released book, The Other Side of the Coin: The Queen, The Dresser and the Wardrobe, she revealed how much planning goes into the Queen’s Christmas Day outfits… yes, plural.
"There may be several outfit changes in one day—it could be as many as five or even up to seven," said Kelly.
"I lay out sketches of evening dresses for the queen to look through and choose what she would like to wear that evening and, occasionally, she may have to pick out a dress for a cocktail party."
Planning these outfits in advance is particularly important because the Queen’s ladies-in-waiting need to know what she’s wearing so they don’t clash with her attire.
"Once Her Majesty has chosen her dress for dinner, a handwritten notice is pinned up in the Dressers’ Corridor detailing what she will be wearing, so that the Queen’s ladies’ maids can select an appropriate dress for the lady they are looking after."
Family, however, are allowed to wear the same colour as the Queen. “When it comes to the royal family, it doesn’t matter if they wear the same color as the Queen because they are family,” says Kelly. “Other guests though, feel they shouldn’t be in the same color as Her Majesty, although the Queen would not mind if this did happen.”