Truth Behind Prince William’s Often-Changing Trooping The Colour Uniform

When the royal family gathers, usually all eyes are on the female members of the monarchy to see what stylish outfits they’re wearing. However, some royal fans were more concerned with Prince William’s ever-changing military uniform. So, why has William’s uniform changed so much over the years? 

The Changing Elements Of William’s Military Outfit

At the 2011 Trooping of the Colour, shortly after his wedding to Kate Middleton, the prince sported the same uniform he wore to get married: his Irish Guards outfit. This uniform represented his position as Colonel of the Irish Guards. 

Prince William (L) and Kate Middleton hold hands walking out of their wedding ceremony
(Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)

He was given the role in February of that same year—the first member of the royal family to serve in that position—and was required by the queen to wear the Irish Guards uniform at his wedding and at the Trooping of the Colour. 

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Williams has continued to wear the bright red military uniform to official royal events over the years, adding his Order of the Garter sash and star, the Queen’s Golden Jubilee Medal, and his Royal Air Force wings. 

His official royal outfit has changed some over the years as he continues to accumulate accolades. In 2012, the Duke of Cambridge added the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee medal to the look, plus his Order of the Thistle star. 

A year later, William started wearing a gold aiguillette to mark his new position as one of the Queen’s aides-de-camp. This rank is personally bestowed by the queen on members of the royal family who hold a military rank.

What Changes Were Made For The Platinum Jubilee?

These changes are minor, but at this year’s Platinum Jubilee, many noticed some noteworthy additions to William’s official uniform. The prince added another medal in honor of the Jubilee, but the most noticeable change was a green sash and thick gold chain work across his chest. 

Prince William (R) wearing his red Trooping of the Colours outfit, looking to his right and smiling. Next to him is Prince George, who is dresses in a navy blue blazer with white dress shirt and cornflower blue tie
(Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)

This change was because the anniversary of the queen’s coronation is what the royals call a “Collar Day.” On these days, members of the royal family are required to wear a collar or chain of the highest order they hold. In William’s case, that is the Order of the Garter. 

However, on a “Collar Day,” the royals cannot wear a collar and sash from the same order. Instead, they wear a sash from their next highest order. For the prince, this meant wearing the green sash of the Order of the Thistle. 

When looking at the military outfits the male members of the royal family wear, most assume not a lot of thought goes into the process. However, as we can see here, there are many rules and regulations that dictate what Prince William can wear to official royal events. 

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