A LIVERPOOL-born personal assistant to the Queen has revealed her fashion secrets in a new book.
Angela Kelly, the daughter of a docker from Walton, helps the monarch choose her clothes and designs them as well.
In her book, Dressing The Queen, she gives a first-hand account of working on the Queen’s outfits in her Diamond Jubilee year.
Top secret dresses for meetings with James Bond, no hats after 6pm and jackets embroidered by indigenous north Americans are just some of the Queen’s wardrobe wonders she reveals.
Miss Kelly, who is is believed to be in her late 50s and is said to have retained her Liverpool accent, was named a Lieutenant of the Royal Victorian Order (LVO) in the Diamond Jubilee Honours list and is understood to have forged a close bond with the Queen since entering her service in 1993.
Perhaps one of Her Majesty’s most famous outfits, the crystal and lace peach cocktail dress she wore to the Olympics opening ceremony, was made twice under top secret conditions, the book reveals. After months of planning with the curtain raiser’s director, Danny Boyle, Ms Kelly and her team made two identical versions of the dress to give the illusion that it was actually the Queen, and not a stunt double, parachuting from a helicopter above the Olympic stadium alongside 007.
The Palace dressmakers worked quietly for months on the dress, never knowing why two were required for the Queen’s opening of the London 2012 Games, according to the book.
Another notable outfit, for the Diamond Jubilee river pageant, was influenced by Queen Elizabeth I, and managed to offer the Queen some protection from the wet weather as she travelled down the River Thames on the Spirit of Chartwell.
In the book Ms Kelly wrote: "We never imagined the weather would turn out so badly, but I am glad that we gave the Queen some protection from the wind and rain with the frill that ran round the coat’s neckline and down its front, and the matching white cashmere pashima."
Another famous outfit, the gold dress the Queen donned for the Diamond Jubilee pop concert, was influenced by the golden figure of the Queen Victoria Memorial, around which the stage was constructed, according to the book.
Fittingly for a concert that featured a programme of British music from the six decades of the Queen’s reign, the gown was bought in 1961.
The book, which features lavish colour photographs of Ms Kelly and her team, design sketches and coverage of some of this year’s major events, also revealed that the Queen rarely wears a hat after 6pm.
Ms Kelly wrote: "After 6pm, the Queen does not usually wear a hat but may wear a headpiece, and to the evening state banquets, a tiara."
For state occasions, a tiara is always required, Ms Kelly said.
She wrote: "The Queen is very fond of the ’Girls of Great Britain and Ireland’ tiara, which was given to her grandmother, Queen Mary, on her marriage in 1893."