Royal Ascot: Knickers are in, fake tans are out

Royal Ascot starts this Tuesday and if you thought you were sorted with your natty strapless Karen Millen dress and gladiator heels you might need to have a re-think. The bods-in-charge at Ascot have sent out sartorial guidelines to all race-goers reminding them of the dress code and laid back it ain’t. In the royal enclosure, skirts must not be more than two inches above the knee and straps must not be less than an inch wide. Is anyone else envisaging a bevvy of fashion police tooled up with measuring tapes, sternly ticking off those who flout the rules like an army of particularly strict headmistresses?

Alongside the ‘no short skirts and no thin straps’ rule are other no-nos such as strapless, halterneck and off-the-shoulder necklines. Even bare legs are frowned upon which effectively means no open-toe sandals unless you particularly favour the sight of a nylon toe-gusset on show. This is only in the VIP enclosure though. However in the riff-raff area there are other stipulations. Women must wear knickers, “but not on show, please ladies!” quip the guidelines, while streaky fake tans are “a total faux pas, and there’s no excuse.” Of course, the papers are having a field day with their ‘Ascot chucks out the chavs‘ headlines (Daily Mail) but really, aren’t these matters of common decency? These directives are no more severe than wedding-guest guidelines and quite frankly, I’m not arguing with the no naff fake-tan streaks rule. In fact, I suggest they go even further. I would also add ‘no flammable fabrics’ (purely for safety reasons you understand), ‘no chiffon skirts with pointy court shoes’ (pet hate) and ‘no novelty hats’ (no explanation required) to the list.

Pic: Daily Mail