Two Hats, One Dress

Royal HatsYesterday, the Duchess of Cambridge wore an instantly recognizable champagne lace dress to the Buckingham Palace Garden Party. This dress, designed by Alexander McQueen, first appeared on June 5, 2012 for the Service of Thanksgiving celebrating the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. On the two occasions we have seen this exquisite frock, it has been topped by two different custom designed hats- a beaded Jane Taylor cocktail hat in 2012 and a lace trimmed percher hat designed by Jane Corbett yesterday. The two hats give a distinctly different look to this ensemble and I am curious, dear readers, which one you prefer with this dress?4

Look 1: With a pink grosgrain ribbon belt and Jane Taylor beaded and veiled cocktail hat at the Diamond Jubilee Service of Thanksgiving on June 4, 2012

Duchess of Cambridge, June 4, 2012 in Jane Taylor | Royal Hats  Duchess of Cambridge, June 4, 2012 in Jane Taylor | Royal Hats

Look 2: With a pale pink straw percher hat trimmed in lace by Jane Corbett (and no belt) at a Buckingham Palace Garden Party on June 10, 2014

Duchess of Cambridge, June 10, 2014 in Jane Corbett | Royal Hats  Duchess of Cambridge, June 10, 2014 in Jane Corbett | Royal Hats

Photos from Max Mumby/Indigo, Max Mumby/Indigo,  WPA Pool and WPA Pool, all via Getty

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30 thoughts on “Two Hats, One Dress

  1. I much prefer the Jane Taylor beaded hat. I don’t think the Jane Corbett hat was appropriate for the dress, and I’m not loving it on her either. Her whole look was off at the garden party, which is rare for the duchess! I love the dress though, one of my favorites of hers!

  2. Okay, the Jane Taylor hat by a country mile. The weird straw percher was a total miss. Even if the lace on the top matched the dress it would still have been a huge miss with that dress. because the style of the hat just didn’t go with lace The odd base colour of the hat and the oyster clutch and shoes just sucked the life out of her and made her dress look flat beige and the lack of belt make it oddly dowdy.

    I think Catherine might have gotten away with her original hat minus the “cocktail” netting but she still needed the dusky rose looking belt, clutch and shoes to give the dress a lift.and give her complexion warmth.

    • I disagree. The Jane Corbett hat is so light and pretty with a bit of whimsy in the back. The lace dress is so mumsy, this hat makes it look much younger. But I love Jane Corbett hats!

      • I agree. The Jane Corbett hat is so current and fashion forward. Such an incredible contrast with the boring dress

  3. I must say I am getting quite bored of her hat/headpieces, there is nothing really different to them and they are all quite similar in shape and style. I would love to see her starting to wear wider brim hats from time to time.

  4. I love her hairstyle with BOTH hats! It gives us an opportunity see her face clearly, and admire her jewellery (beautiful pearl drops). Between the hats, the new one unfortunately IMO is not as interesting as the first one.

  5. No doubt in my mind–the floral one with the net! 🙂 The other is too flat and too matchy-matchy. I also prefer the dress with the belt.

  6. Both hats are amazing. Why pit them against each other? Let both sing their own merits and be admired for the works of art they both are.

    • Yes, and remember they were for two totally different occasions. That JT beaded cocktail hat would not have worked at all for the garden party this week (WAY too formal) and the JC straw and lace percher did a great job of being fun and flirty (and just informal enough) for the outdoor party.

  7. I forgot how lovely the hat looked! Had the lace on the second hat been the same as the dress, it would have been a bridesmaid outfit! The first hat has my vote!

  8. I prefer the first hat, but the second doesn’t exactly offend my eyes – both are nice. I think this new one will come into its own with other outfits.
    The dress does need the silk belt, if only for a hint of different fabric to break up all that lace and beige. The dress itself, well I’d say the hemline would be fine if the neckline were lower or sleeves were shorter; but having all three: high hem, neck AND long sleeves makes it look a bit…claustrophobic?…and too ‘same-y’.
    Give the dress capped sleeves (or even sleeveless with a boat neck, if that wouldn’t be too risque for a royal), or scoop the neckline a tiny bit down, or raise the hem to just touching the knees – perfection.

  9. I don’t like either hat really and I am also not a fan of lace dresses for daytime wear. It’s hard to make any hat look good when you have a mop of hair hanging down untidily. She has a round face, and it looks larger with tiny hats perched on her head. She needs larger, more structured hats to balance her face shape, and a more elegant updo.

  10. The new hat REALLY reminds me of a craft project. A paper plate plus a paper doily plus some fancy ribbon. The shame of it is that it does nothing for the Duchess or her outfit. I wasn’t wild about the original hat either. I think the Duchess of Cambridge struggles to find a hat style that really suits her.

  11. If you look up the word “twee” you will see it defined as ‘affectedly dainty’. That word perfectly describes this hat. Also, that dress is crying for a belt.

  12. No competition! The winner by far has to be the first hat. As I said in the Garden Party post, the previous wearing was, for me, one of The Duchesses most memorable looks. The entire outfit was so appropriate for this special event and the light, delicate hat greatly contributed to that. The beading and net totally complemented the beautiful lace of the dress and I thought The Duchess looked sublime. Wonder what today’s hat will be paired with next time. Thanks.

  13. The first picture of the way she wore the lace dress. In the second wearing it is missing something, looks unfinished. The belt adds to the dress, makes it look more put together. The first hat is the best. The second hat looks to small, even though it has some lace trim on the top which is trying to pull the hat and dress together, it doesn’t do the job, the hat is way to small and looks out of place.

  14. The dress is fab, but I just don’t get the pairing with this new hat. It should be paired with a sleek hat not this fussy thing. That cocktail hat of 2012 was fun and a great combo with the dress, and the belt added a break to a lot of lace too, I think it lacks something without. Sorry, but I think she’s gone backwards here.

  15. I like both of the hats, but the 2012 version a little better. BTW, Jean, for me the length of the dress is just perfect – for my personal taste, sometimes Kate’s skirts are a little bit too short to be elegant. And a formal dress should be elegant, I think. But that is a matter of taste that you cannot discuss 😉

    • absolutely, some of her dresses have been WAY too short to be elegant. I think with the belt the proportions are better too, as she is a tall girl and breaking up that length helps. agree with you.

  16. Well, you know, I have to agree with the comment that her dress is a smidge too long, but back to hats. It’s hard to tell. At first view of the one she wore yesterday, I thought the straw a bit too casual for the formal lace dress. so for that reason, I like the one she wore in 2012. so, I think my preference would be if they took the poof off the top of the 2012 one, that would be perfect with that lace dress. Anxious to hear other opinions. I do like the shape and tails of the bow on the other one. very cute. Just the fabric makes me think it’s too casual for that dress.

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