Why the Queen no longer wears the Imperial State Crown for her speech

Today the Queen is giving her annual speech in front of Parliament, and whilst she will be discussing important issues such as Brexit, of course people will be looking at her outfit, specifically whether she has a hidden message within it.

Last year you'll remember she wore a blue hat, which many believed was her way to subtly send pro-EU vibes. Either way, her choice of headgear was significant, as it was the first time she didn't wear the Imperial State Crown.

You'll recognised the traditional diamond crown with a purple velvet insert, which was originally made for King George VI's coronation in 1937, and was inspired by a crown owned by Queen Victoria. It features so many diamonds (over 2,000) as well as sapphires, pearls and emeralds that it is actually priceless.

This year, for the second time, the Queen has opted not to wear it, and it's apparently for purely practical reasons. As you can imagine it's very heavy, and at 93, she might not feel comfortable having that weight on her head for such a long amount of time.

She as instead opted for a seemingly lighter option, which is the George IV diadem. A smaller diamond crown, it dates back to 1820, and was made for Kind George IV, and she wore it to her coronation.

It is said to feature 1,333 diamonds, including a four-carat yellow diamond at the front cross and has two strings of pearls at the base. The diadem also has four bouquets of roses, thistles and shamrocks weaved into it, the floral symbols of England, Scotland and Ireland respectively.

Penny Goldstone

Penny Goldstone is the Digital Fashion Editor at Marie Claire, covering everything from catwalk trends to royal fashion and the latest high street and Instagram must-haves.

Penny grew up in France and studied languages and law at the Sorbonne Nouvelle University in Paris before moving to the UK for her MA in multimedia journalism at Bournemouth University. She moved to the UK permanently and has never looked back (though she does go back regularly to stock up on cheese and wine).

Although she's always loved fashion - she used to create scrapbooks of her favourite trends and looks, including Sienna Miller and Kate Moss' boho phase - her first job was at MoneySavingExpert.com, sourcing the best deals for everything from restaurants to designer sales.

However she quit after two years to follow her true passion, fashion journalism, and after many years of internships and freelance stints at magazines including Red, Cosmopolitan, Stylist and Good Housekeeping, landed her dream job as the Digital Fashion Editor at Marie Claire UK.

Her favourite part of the job is discovering new brands and meeting designers, and travelling the world to attend events and fashion shows. Seeing her first Chanel runway IRL at Paris Fashion Week was a true pinch-me moment.