British Royals Welcome Singapore State Visit

Queen Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh welcomed the President of Singapore, Tony Tan Keng Yam and his wife, Mary Chee Bee Kiang, on a state visit to Great Britain today. The Queen used this occasion to debut a new hat in navy straw, trimmed with a pink silk rose to coordinate with the rose print of her dress. The shape of this navy straw hat is leaving me scratching my own head a little- after staring at it for a while, I think there is a wide band of straw wrapped around the crown of this hat which adds dimension and a slight hourglass shape to the crown. The navy straw is repeated curled tails around the rosette trim. I really like the interesting shape and the gently angled brim, which perfectly frames Her Majesty’s face. I just wonder if the rosette and curling tails might have worked better on the side of the hat instead of the front? Either way, it’s an unexpected and interesting hat that will no doubt, give us much to discuss.

Designer: Angela Kelly. Her coat and dress are Karl Ludwig Couture

The Duchess of Cambridge repeated her dove grey wool percher cocktail hat trimmed with large multi-looped organdie bow. The unique shape of this hat, with its gently waved base, is such a departure from other hat shapes that it becomes rather distinctive, despite the neutral colour. Kate’s hairstyle today, in a low and polished ponytail, works beautifully with this hat.

Duchess of Cambridge, October 21, 2014 in Jane Taylor | Royal Hats

Designer: Jane Taylor. Her coat is Alexander McQueen.
Previously Worn: April 20, 2014

I adore that both Queen Elizabeth and the Duchess of Cambridge chose hats today in rather unusual shapes. These little style departures make hat watching for us all the more fun, don’t they?. What are your thoughts on this pair of British royal hats?

Photos from Getty as indicated

Duchess of Cornwall at Harvest Service

The Duchess of Cornwall attended the National Harvest Service at Birmingham Cathedral yesterday. Dressed in very trendy navy, Camilla topped her dress with a wool felt hat with square crown, slightly angled brim and a monochrome twisted rope. The twisted rope embellishment always reminds me of a sausage (not what one wants to be reminded of when looking at a royal hat) but I do like the elegantly refined shape of the hat. Camilla also looks marvelous in blue.

I suspect the snakey sausage trim on this hat will not be overwhelmingly popular with you again, dear readers so I welcome your renovation suggestions – what kind of embellishment would you replace it with?

Duchess of Cornwall, October 20, 2014 in Philip Treacy | Royal Hats

Designer: Philip Treacy
Previously Worn: April 8, 2014; December 25, 2014; March 19, 2012

Photos from WPA Pool via Getty and Getty as indicated 


Kent Princess At Ascot Champion’s Day

Princess Michael of Kent was also spotted at British Champions Day at Ascot Racecourse on Saturday. She repeated the white pillbox with dramatic ostrich feather trim that we first saw her wear back in June. Since the debut of this hat, I have waffled back and forth between thinking this hat is great fun or thinking it has a molting tail which warrants removal. What are your thoughts on this piece?

Princess Michael of Kent, October 18, 2014 | Royal Hats

Designer: unconfirmed. I suspect John Boyd
Previously Worn: June 18, 2014; June 16, 2014

Photo from Max Mumby/Indigo via Getty

Queen Elizabeth Cheers Horse’s Final Race

Queen Elizabeth attended British Champion’s Day at Ascot today for the final race of her horse, Estimate (unlike her owner, Estimate is now headed into retirement). For this event, the Queen she repeated her two-toned bright blue and turquoise stovepipe hat. It is a vibrant hat that Her Majesty wears well, don’t you think?

Queen Elizabeth, October 18, 2014 in Angela Kelly | Royal Hats

Designer: Angela Kelly
Previously Worn: April 29, 2014;  November 14, 2013

Photos from Getty as indicated and Ben Hoskins/Stringer via Getty

Hat Renovation in Sweden

Royal HatsReader Sarah contacted me earlier this week with an interesting hat observation.  Do you notice anything between this hat, worn by Queen Silvia for King Carl Gustaf’s official birthday celebration in April 2004:

Swedish Royal Family

and this hat, worn by Queen Silvia for Princess Estelle’s christening on May 22, 2012

Great observation, Sarah! It is clearly the same hat, with the addition of seed pearls, pleated silk ribbon, feathers and silk blossoms. While I am mildly surprised that Queen Silvia recycled a hat for this important event, the transformation of this hat really does make it into a completely different piece. It is an interesting idea to take a previously worn hat and “jazz it up” for a single, important event (instead of ordering a bespoke hat for that same event which would likely be worn just once). This approach to hat recycling greatly intrigues me.

Which way do you, dear readers, prefer this straw hat? Thanks again, Sarah, for sharing this great observation.

Princess Yoko Visits Toyama

Princess Yoko of Mikasa was in Toyama for a series of engagements yesterday. She began in Oyabe City, presenting the awards from the 16th Welfare Golf Tournament in the same black bowler hat with jade bow that we saw her wear last weekend in Osaka. Later in the day, she changed into a smart navy fedora with cream band around the crown to visit  a program for disabled adults in Takaoka City. Doesn’t the fedora look great on her?

Princess Yoko, October 16, 2014 | Royal Hats Princess Yoko, October 16, 2014 | Royal Hats

Photos from The Imperial Family of Japan

Queen Elizabeth Views Memorial at Tower of London

Queen Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh visited the “Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red” WWI memorial art installation at the Tower of London this morning (learn more about this piece here- 888,246 poppies will be planted in the moat by volunteers by November 11, 2014 with each poppy representing a British or Colonial fatality in the First World War).

The Queen surprised with a new Angela Kelly designed hat in vibrant turquoise blue. The hat was another one of Kelly’s ‘Hourglass’ hats with a sharply curved, tall crown- this version was made in the same turquoise wool as Her Majesty’s coat and trimmed with a simple black velvet rosette. While I think this version is the most successful of the seven hats Queen Elizabeth has in this shape, it still looks bulbous, off balance and a little Mad Hatter-ish to me. It is, however, a fantstic colour on the Queen and perfectly contrasted against the sea of red poppies today. What do you think of this new hat?

Queen Elizabeth, October 16, 2014 in Angela Kelly | Royal Hats Queen Elizabeth, October 16, 2014 in Angela Kelly | Royal Hats

Photos from Getty as indicated; Chris Jackson and Chris Jackson via Getty