As promised, we’re going to continue our inventory of orange hued royal hats with a peek into Queen Mathilde’s closet. So far in 2015, we have seen the young Belgian queen wear twenty-two different hats – in 2014, she wore just twenty. This makes her a moderate royal hat wearer and with this frequency, it is a little surprising to find that she has three orange hats currently in rotation:
UPDATE: a fourth orange hat was introduced on October 11, 2016 while on state visit to Japan, In keeping with the others, it is also not a traditional shape or style! This piece was further renovated before reappearing in Canada on March 13, 2018 as an entirely orange design. A fifth design with open crown was also introduced during the Canadian state visit on March 15, 2018.
Designer: Fabienne Delvigne
First Appeared: March 15, 2018
Prior to becoming Queen, Mathilde wore hats much less frequently (sometimes just four or five per year). Despite this low frequency, there are two more orange headpieces which were worn during her time as princess. I suspect both have now been retired:
Designer: #P1 is Fabienne Delvigne and #P2 is unknown
Last Appeared: May 2, 2009; July 21, 2004
Finally, there is one more hat that deserves inclusion here- a natural straw picture hat with wide orange stripe around the brim. Queen Mathilde first wore this piece for National Day in July 2010 (below left) and repeated it most recently while on a July 2012 visit to Burundi (below right).
Four orange hats in one’s current millinery closet might not sound like much but in relation to the size of Mathilde’s overall wardrobe, I think it is significant. I’m also struck by the bold shapes and brave shades she has chosen- this is not orange for the faint of heart! Queen Mathilde wears orange well and my guess is that we will see more hats in this colour appear in coming years. For now, what do you think of this collection?
Photos from JULIEN WARNAND/epa/Corbis; Philip Reynaers/Photo News S.A./Corbis; Le Soir; Photonews and Pascal Le Segretain via Getty; Benoit Doppange via Belga; The Belgian Monarchy; The Royal Forums; Albert van der Werf/dpa/Corbis; Newscom