5 Things We Learned About Queen Elizabeth from Her Assistant’s Tell-All Memoir

ICYMI: Queen Elizabeth II’s longtime personal assistant and senior dresser, Angela Kelly, just majorly spilled the royal tea (with the 93-year-old queen’s approval, of course).

Kelly gave Hello! magazine an exclusive first look at her all-new memoir, The Other Side of the Coin: The Queen, the Dresser and the Wardrobe, which reveals intimate details about her work with Her Majesty. Although the biggest takeaway from Kelly’s memoir is that Queen Elizabeth has a lot of personality, the forthcoming book also reveals five surprising royal secrets. Read on to find out what hot goss Kelly’s book includes.

1. That Iconic Michelle Obama Hug

Although many speculated that the former first lady broke royal protocol when she hugged Her Majesty during their pre G-20 summit rendezvous in 2009, Kelly reveals that the queen actually welcomed the greeting. Kelly wrote that the queen saw it as “a natural instinct to show affection and respect for another great woman.” The more you know.

2. Her Majesty’s James Bond Cameo

The 2012 Olympics opened with a shocking (but super funny) video in which Her Majesty met James Bond (Daniel Craig) and jumped out of a helicopter on a special mission. As it turns out, the queen said she would only agree to be a part of the video if she could utter her iconic line: “Good evening, Mr. Bond.”

queen elizabeth shoes1
WPA Pool/Getty Images

3. If The Shoe Fits…

Ever wonder why Queen Elizabeth’s shoes never seem to bother her? Well, the monarch avoids blisters and barking dogs thanks to Kelly, who personally wears her new shoes in order to stretch them out. Why? Well, they wear the same shoe size and Her Majesty simply doesn’t have the time to stretch her own shoes out. Fair.

royal baby archie christening

4. The Royal Christening Tea

You know that iconic christening robe that all modern royals have been baptized in? It’s a replica modeled after Queen Victoria’s daughter’s gown, which was first worn in 1841. To recreate the antique coloring, Kelly dyed the remake in cold tea.

queen elizabeth laughing
WPA Pool/Getty Images

5. She’s In On The Joke

Queen Elizabeth may come off as deferential and serious in public, but in private she loves a good joke. One April Fool’s Day, Kelly planted a toy stuffed bird on the queen’s balcony and pretended it was dead. When Queen Elizabeth learned that Kelly was joking with her, she dished it right back and said she’d fire her. Spoiler alert: She didn’t.

You never stop surprising us, Queen Elizabeth II.  


Cat mom, yogi, brunch enthusiast

Lex is an LA native who's deeply obsessed with picnics, Slim Aarons, rosé, Hollywood history and Joan Didion. She joined PureWow in early 2017.