1954 Australian Tour: Canberra

Royal Hats Queen Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh continued their very full schedule of engagements in Canberra on February 16, 1954 with visits to the Australian National Memorial to the United States, the Australian, the Australian War Memorial, a children’s rally held in Menuka Park, the opening of University House and the presentation of Address-In-Reply in parliament. For these events, the queen wore a lemon yellow silk shantung dress topped by a charming calot covered in small yellow silk blossoms

Embed from Getty Images
Embed from Getty Images

The morning of February 17 was equally busy, the Queen and Duke meeting with the Privy Council and former and current service men and women at Government House and Parliament House, presenting colours to the Corps of Staff Cadets at the Royal Military College and lunching at Duntroon House. For these events, the Queen wore a dark green silk dress with matching ruched calot, trimmed with a pair of striped white, black and dark green feather wings on one side.

Embed from Getty Images
Embed from Getty Images

We don’t talk much about jewelry here but it’s worth noting that the Queen was gifted a diamond wattle brooch by Prime Minister Robert Menzies during her Canberra stay and chose this morning, and the fantastic backdrop of this deep green silk dress, to wear it for the first time.

That afternoon, the couple attended a garden party at Government House. The Queen wore a dark floral dress topped with a picture hat- the first brimmed hat seen on the Australian leg of the coronation tour. The hat’s waved brim, bound in a contrasting dark silk stripe, gave a lovely, face-framing movement to the design. When we think about garden party moments on the 1954 tour, one from Sydney stands out (we’ll look at it tomorrow!) but I think this one is nearly as memorable!

Embed from Getty Images

Images from Getty and The State Library of New South Wales as indicated

8 thoughts on “1954 Australian Tour: Canberra

  1. Honestly they must have been knackered by this schedule, especially in the height of sun in Australia.

    Among these I particularly love that emerald green, such a gorgeous colour.

    • I think you might be on to something…
      Embed from Getty Images

  2. These are all charmers, but I especially like the one with the waved, striped brim. She’s had all brimless hats on the trip so far. I wonder what prompted the change?

    The wattle brooch is something of a favorite of HM. Not all her gifts are in regular rotation, but this one is.

    Any ideas on who the milliner was, HQ? Would these have come from Norman Hartnell’s shop?

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