Another royal family with close ties to the Spanish royals are those from the Kingdom of Belgium (due in part to Spanish born Queen Fabiola). These close ties were evident on May 22, 2004 when the entire Belgian royal family attended the wedding of The Prince of Asturias and Letizia Ortiz Rocasolano.
Queen Paola looked very elegant in a burgundy printed floral dress, cream coat and burgundy accessories. The star of her burgundy straw hat was a wide, upturned brim with shredded edge (a signature Fabienne Delvigne design element at the time). On its own, this hat does not seem remarkable but in combination with the other elements of Queen Paola’s ensemble, looked stylish, polished and wonderfully vibrant on her.
Queen Fabiola topped her dove grey dress and purple and grey floral coat with a lilac purple hat. With a squared crown and brim that gently turned upward around the sides and back of the hat, the shape of this hat worked very well with Fabiola’s hairstyle. Trimmed with silk blooms and ribbon around the crown, I thought this hat was a very pretty choice for her.
The Duchess of Brabant wowed in a pale grey straw picture hat trimmed in a wrap of sea foam green and grey burnt feathers around the crown. I particularly love the fluid shape of this hat’s brim which was highlighted so beautifully against the open neck of Mathilde’s coat. Royal outfits in pale hues can easily look bland or washed out but I think the combination of Mathilde’s light green dress, pale grey coat and hat was absolute perfection.
Princess Astrid was downright plucky in her choice of ensemble for this wedding, topping her bright pink jacket and polka dot skirt with a black cocktail hat trimmed with large white and bright pink pompom discs. It was certainly a bold and adventurous look that displayed Astrid’s daring fashion sense (something I always admire). I just can’t shake the thought, however, that this hat looks like a black plate topped with scoops of vanilla and strawberry ice cream.
Another hat I adored at this wedding was worn by Princess Claire. Her raspberry straw picture hat with square crown and cartwheel brim was embellished with just a simple band around the crown. The lack of embellishment was perfect for this hat’s pairing with Claire’s boldly patterned coat. The overall look was bright, fun, feminine and very chic.
I thought the Belgian royals were a particularly well dressed bunch at this wedding- several of these hats are among my favourites from this event and seem to be as stylish today as they were a decade ago. Do any stand out to you?
First thing tomorrow morning, we will look at the hats worn by the Swedish and Norwegian royal families.
Photos from A. Jones/J. Whatling/J. Parker/M. Cuthbert via Getty; Corbis via The Royal Forums; Pedro Armestre, Getty Images/Stringer, Getty Images/Stringer and A. Jones/J. Whatling/J. Parker/M. Cuthbert via Getty; The Royal Forums; El Mundo; A. Jones/J. Whatling/J. Parker/M. Cuthbert, and A. Jones/J. Whatling/J. Parker/M. Cuthbert via Getty