Thursday, June 11, 2015

Trouser Trooping

I have no clue who the other people are under the masks!
Since the Trooping of the Colour is taking place in London this weekend, I thought I'd take a stroll down memory lane and revisit one of my most memorable (and slightly questionable) looks, which took place at the 2012 Trooping of the Colour.

But first a little background: 

"Trooping the Colour is a ceremony performed by regiments of the British and Commonwealth armies. It has been a tradition of British infantry regiments since the 17th century, although the roots go back much earlier. On battlefields, a regiment's colours, or flags, were used as rallying points. Consequently, regiments would have their ensigns slowly march with their colours between the soldiers' ranks to enable soldiers to recognise their regiments' colours.
Since 1748 Trooping the Colour has also marked the official birthday of the British sovereign. It is held in London annually on a Saturday in June on Horse Guards Parade by St. James's Park...
The Queen travels down The Mall from Buckingham Palace in a royal procession with a sovereign's escort of Household Cavalry (mounted troops or horse guards). After receiving a royal salute, she inspects her troops of the Household Division, both foot guards and horse guards, and the King's Troop, Royal Horse Artillery. Each year, one of the foot-guards regiments is selected to troop its colour through the ranks of guards. Then the entire Household Division assembly conducts a march past the Queen, who receives a salute from the saluting base. Parading with its guns, the King's Troop takes precedence as the mounted troops perform a walk-march and trot-past." Source

The Queen joins the rest of her family on the balcony once that is finished, then the crowds are allowed to approach the gates of BHam Palace, and a flyover takes place. 

Lots of pomp, lots of pageantry, lots of happy heart pounds in my chest. 

If you want to read more about my experience and see more pictures from the 2012 Trooping of the Colour, check out this blog post
(yes, this is my picture, and yes, Prince Harry is looking at me. It's obviously meant to be.) 

In the days before our weekend, my friends and I had embarked on a shopping trip to our favourite joint, Primark, and that is where I found these leggings. I didn't know when or where I was going to wear them, but at a very cheap price, I had to have them.

The Trooping of the Colour is full of English Pride, which is the perfect excuse to wear Union Jack leggings.

Since I was only in London for a month, I had a limited wardrobe.  I had a look in my mind and had to use my resources and do my best to get as close as I could to what I envisioned with that I had, which meant mooching from my friends.

I borrowed a white flowy sheer shirt from one and black ankle boots from another. I had a major case of greasy hair, so braided part of it and prayed the rest wouldn't look too terrible.

The shirt worked because of the limited supplies, but had I had it my way, the shirt would have been not-sheer, more form fitting than it was, and longer.

The shoes look a bit like sneakers in the pictures, so had I had my way (and ideal closet) they would have looked more like boots. Perhaps a smidgen higher up on the ankle?

Making an outfit work is more about how confident you feel in it, rather than how perfectly it comes together. (though those can often go hand-in-hand)

Looking back on the pictures sometimes cause me to cringe (My face looks incredibly round. I should have posed differently. Done something different with my hair. Added some lipstick...), I smile from the memories of that great day.

For instance, hours after the ceremony, we were walking looking for a tube station as we passed the Ritz London, which is 10x fancier than it sounds, believe it or not. As we were passing there was an older gentleman (older being probably in his 60's) and his wife walking towards us, likely heading back to the Ritz. How did I deduce this? Well, the woman was very nicely dressed and the gentleman was wearing a tailcoat with his suit. This was not the attire of the mass population.

As we passed he kindly said, "Love your trousers!" to which I turned to him and smiled a hearty, "thank you!"

Upon further review, I deduced the gentleman is one of the Queen's dignitaries or someone important, based solely on his posh attire.

As mentioned, this outfit didn't come together how I saw it, but I made it work with what I had. If this had been a regular day of us just hanging out, I would not have worn it. It was a day of celebration in the city, and I was going to embrace it, dagnabbit!

Yes, this outfit was slightly questionable.
Yes, my family did poke fun of me for it (they may be used to me but doesn't mean they still don't like to tease!).
Yes, they will be included in my suitcase when I journey back across the pond, this time with the proper accouterments to make the outfit work.

English term to American term
Trousers = Pants
Pants = Underwear

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