Queen Elizabeth Just Broke Her Own Rule — Does It Symbolize Looser Regulations Among the Monarchs?

The British royal family has a firm set of strict rules and protocols. Being a member of one of the world’s most famous families is certainly high profile and glamorous, but it can’t be all that easy.

Queen Elizabeth
Queen Elizabeth | Stefan Wermuth/WPA Pool/Getty Images

The royals are constantly being watched and photographed. Everything they do is closely scrutinized. When dressing for events, for example, every choice must be carefully considered. Outfits must be absolutely perfect and fitting to the occasion, with each detail, color, and accessory just right. Hats must be worn to formal events, women are required to have perfectly manicured nails painted with sheer colors that are approved by the queen, and they also must remember not to skip the pantyhose.

Behaviors are closely analyzed as well, so the royals must constantly be aware of their actions. Most of the rules are in accordance with what Queen Elizabeth expects. So it was a complete surprise when, recently, she broke her own rule at a garden party. Does this symbolize looser regulations among the monarchs?

What rules do the royals have to follow?

Let’s start by breaking down what rules the royals must follow. The members of the family don’t just get to sit back and relax.

They must remember that when the queen stands, so do they. Families can not just hop on a plane and travel as they please. In fact, heirs are required to travel separately. Another strict rule is that a bride cannot wear whatever she pleases on her big day, as all wedding gowns must be approved by the queen.

Even dietary choices come with firm regulations. For example, since the queen is not a fan of garlic, it must not be used in the preparation of meals to be served at events that she attends. Shellfish is also not permitted, as it has a high chance of causing illness. The list of rules goes on and on.

Do the royals ever break the rules?

View this post on Instagram

The Duchess of Cambridge, Patron of Action on Addiction, attended the first annual gala dinner in recognition of Addiction Awareness Week. Before the dinner, The Duchess of Cambridge met former Action on Addiction clients Jay Otty and Melanie Bennett, who worked to prepare food for the gala dinner. Jay is a key member of the ‘front of house’ staff at @Brink_Liverpool – Action on Addiction’s ‘dry bar’ in the city. He has worked in the hospitality industry for seven years, having now been clean and sober for nine years. Melanie says that Action on Addiction’s Self-Help Addiction Recovery Programme, which taught her coping mechanisms and new behaviours, and started the grieving process for her father which she had been blocking for ten years, helped saved her life. Speaking at the dinner, The Duchess said: "What’s remarkable about Action on Addiction is that it goes beyond helping those who are suffering on the courageous journey into recovery – it also lends direct support to the children and families affected by addiction – for as long as it takes." Action on Addiction is the only UK addictions charity that works across all the areas of research, treatment, family support and professional education. The aim of Addiction Awareness Week is to provide a platform for focused conversations about the many different facets of addiction, to enable a wide range of organisations to engage with people and families who may be affected by addiction, and to raise public awareness of the far-reaching and negative effects of addiction. The ultimate aim is that as honest but inspirational stories are shared, those affected by addiction will then feel more able to take the necessary steps to access help, hope and freedom from their addiction. @ActionOnAddiction #AddictionAwarenessWeek

A post shared by Kensington Palace (@kensingtonroyal) on

At times, they do sometimes stray from the rules. Although, as the future king and queen, Prince William and Kate Middleton must follow the rules a little more closely than the other royal family members such as Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.

This is why we never see Will and Kate holding hands in public, while the Duke and Duchess of Sussex can’t seem to let go of each other. Although Kate is watched slightly more than Meghan, we have seen her bend the rules on occasion by wearing dresses that are slightly above the knee, stepping out with bare legs, and giving the occasional hug to young fans during appearances. 

What rule did Queen Elizabeth recently break?

Fans surely assume that since Queen Elizabeth is the person who makes most of the rules, that she never breaks them. This may have been true — until recently.

At a palace garden party, blogger Laura-Ann Barr presented her majesty with a lovely bouquet of flowers, even though she knew that the queen does not usually accept gifts in accordance with the family rules. It was a pleasant surprise when the queen accepted them, thanked Laura for the gift, and then handed the bouquet to one of her ladies-in-waiting, who told Barr that she would carry them and “the queen can have them when we’re indoors.”

This comes at an interesting time when the royal family appears to be embracing some change. We might be able to assume that it symbolizes looser regulations in the royal family. They seem to be modernizing the way that they do things. It is great to see that they are a bit more laid back in modern times.