When I go to my in-laws’ for Christmas, I mostly just have to deal with teetotaling and a couple very big dogs that like to jump on my face at 6 in the morning. But my in-laws do not include the Queen, and for Kate Middleton that holiday visit is a veritable Christmas pageant, with multiple costume changes and everything.
According to Vanity Fair, Christmas at the Queen’s residence involves five changes of clothes a day. (Christmas break at my house means not having to change my yoga pants or wear a bra until New Year’s.) Everyone has to bring a breakfast outfit, a lunch outfit, a tea outfit, a black tie gown for dinner, and something to wear for shooting or horseback riding. And you bring your suitcases and then cede all control over what you’re going to wear when, because that’s the maid’s job.
“It doesn’t matter a jot what suitcase you have, but all your clothes are pressed and put away and the maid chooses your dresses,” said Lady Elizabeth Anson, a cousin of the Queen’s. “In the morning you are dressed for breakfast, then you change for shooting. The Queen wears a skirt and so do most of the women. You come back to the house and change for tea at about 5:30 p.m. into a wool dress or a suit with a skirt. Then you have a quick change for dinner.”
That sounds like it might be fun once or twice, but it also makes sitting by the TV with mulled wine and old Christmas specials sound really relaxing. Also it involves a lot of packing, and packing is no fun at all. We wonder if all the ladies have to carry separate hat boxes for each of their little fascinators.