Inventory: Duchess of Cambridge’s Blue Hats

The Duchess of Cambridge celebrated her 34th birthday on Saturday. Some of you noticed the lack of specific birthday post marking this- this year, instead of birthday posts, I want to continue building the millinery wardrobe inventories we started last fall. This month, we’re going to focus on all things blue.

Blue is a colour that I easily associate with Kate’s wardrobe and when it comes to hats, we have seen the Duchess in eight different blue pieces. Here they are in the order they were introduced:

1.Duchess of Cambridge, June 10, 2011 in Jane Corbett | Royal Hats    2.Duchess of Cambridge, June 13, 2012 in Rachel Trevor Morgan | Royal Hats  3.Duchess of Cambridge, April 12, 2014 in Jane Taylor | Royal Hats

Designer: Jane Corbett; Rachel Trevor Morgan; Jane Taylor
First Appeared: June 10, 2011; June 25, 2011; April 12, 2014

4.Duchess of Cambridge, April 25, 2014 inHatmaker by Jonathan Howard | Royal Hats  5.Duchess of Cambridge, Mar 13, 2015 in Jane Taylor | Royal Hats  6.Duchess of Cambridge, February 7, 2016 in Lock and Co. | Royal Hats

Designer: Hatmaker by Jonathan Howard; Jane Taylor; Lock and Co.
First appeared: April 25, 2014March 13, 2015March 26, 2015 (initially at a private event)

7.Duchess of Cambridge, Sep 24, 2016 in Silvia Fletcher for Lock & Co. | Royal Hats  8.Duchess of Cambridge, Mar 10, 2017 in Lock & Co. | Royal Hats

Designer: Both are Silvia Fletcher for Lock and Co.
First appeared: September 4, 2016March 10, 2017

Kate has one more navy blue design that has yet to be worn publicly- a Rachel Trevor Morgan designed cocktail hat with silk rose and tulle net trim worn to the wedding of friends in April 2012. And finally, before her royal life, Kate appeared publicly at a 2009 society wedding in a pale straw blue Jane Corbett designed saucer with silk floral trim. She has not worn this hat since becoming a Duchess, making many suspect it is no longer part of her hat wardrobe (a guess strengthened by this photo of her mother wearing the piece in 2010)

Duchess of Cambridge, Apr 19, 2012 in Rachel Trevor Morgan | Royal Hats  Kate Middleton, August 2009 in Jane Corbett | Royal Hats

Looking at Kate’s blue hats, I’m struck by the similarity in style between several of these pieces. Four of them (#2, #4, #6 and the one above yet to make its public debut) are round base percher cocktail hats in similar shades of navy.  Kate is not the most prolific of royal hat wearers so it remains a little curious to me that she has four pieces so close in colour and style. I suppose the different materials account for some of this (silk, tulle, felt) along with different trimmings but this inventory illustrates how much Kate favours this particular type of hat.

UPDATE: It was a lovely surprise in March 2017 when Kate introduced in the Lock and Co. Tiffany hat with wide mushroom brim (#8) into her wardrobe. It’s wonderful to see her start to experiment with different millinery shapes!

What do you think of Kate’s blue hats?

Photos from WPA Pool, Chris Jackson, Samir Hussein, Samir Hussein, Justin Tallis, Karwai Tang, Karwai Tang, and Dominic Lipinski via Getty; Mark Stewart; Bauer Griffin

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22 thoughts on “Inventory: Duchess of Cambridge’s Blue Hats

  1. I must say, after viewing all these hats together I must revise my first choice of this group. Number 6 has always been a favorite, but seeing the scale of the hat in comparison to all the others, with her beautiful hairstyle, absolutely every inch of a perfectly-styled dress, and just-right stunning pin..I think from head to toe this ensemble is perfect, and one of my all-time favorites.

  2. I especially like #2, 4, 5 & 7,but my favorite is #8 (probably because it is different). Kate does seem to favor the small saucer style and I too hope we see a few more like #8. I wonder why the one hat has been passed over to her mother. Does Kate no longer like it? Just curious.

  3. My favorite of these is #2. The shape, the gathered fabric, the trim all make it very attractive. Also it fits well and doesn’t obscure Duchess Kate’s face. My favorite style for her hair is long lush curls but pulled back from her face. There is a time and place for a bun (formal occasions, windy days), but I see Kate as still young and long hair is nice on a young person.

  4. This collection shows why #5 was my all time favorite Kate hat the moment I saw it. It’s not a huge departure in size, but is a little larger than the other, which gives me hope for the future. The shape, color are wonderful on her, and PLACEMENT! Previously she had a tendency to plop hem right on top or so the forehead bolster thing. The angle on this one is flawless. Oh, I also second those who noted how much better the hair looks up.

  5. #5 hat is indicative of Kate’s evolving style and maturity..so pretty on her and her hair is most attractive in this style!

  6. I, too, love no. 5 the best. The Rachel Trevor Morgan with the net is my second favorite. And I like them all better when her hair is up.

  7. I vote for No: 5 for the win! Next best is No:2, then 3, then 1, then the 2009 pale blue hat, then 4, then the 2012 wedding hat (the last was very over-trimmed). Overall, I don’t like percher hats all that much and I don’t think they really flatter this Duchess that much, and they don’t look right with her usual long, loose hairstyles.

  8. I like these hats (sort of) but like many others I am ready for a little more variety. I would like to see all of our percher wearers move on to hats that actually sit onto the head. Many of them (the perchers) make me feel uneasy, waiting for them to slide off. And I’m aware that they are well anchored, but still…
    Because Kate wears a lot of navy, I have no problem with so many hats in that color, but a little more variety in style would be nice.

  9. The best of the bunch of the Duchess of Cambridge’s hat collection is #5. I would like to own this one myself. She looks more professional without her hair hanging down as well. She suits blue well, but I wish she would experiment more with some other colors. I would like to see her expand her millinery choices from the perchers and cocktail hats that she mainly prefers to wear. It’s time she stopped wearing that heavy black eyeliner, which belongs back in the 1970s. It’s hard and aging.

    • I agree that her hair looks better when it’s up. It makes the whole look more put together. With her hair down these hats looks more like an afterthought.

  10. I have never been a fan of Kate in her hat collection for the most part. A lot of them tend to blur together in my mind – she often chooses the same scale and they are usually worn tipped to that same side she favors. Maybe with age, still will ‘grow’ into a more varied hat wardrobe – she could take a lesson from Sophie on hats.

  11. Well I will admit I am having trouble with this. To me her style is always respectful and appropriate, however, to me it is too staunch . I would like to see her more relaxed in her style. Number one is nice however it is almost too sophisticated and suitable for an older person perhaps depending on the occasion. I like to see her in lighter colours. A little more free flowing in design. Her smile beams but does not match her stiff choices in hat design. Her makeup needs to lighten and get away from all of the black eye makeup. Her dresses are a bit better. So I will have to pass. sorry.

  12. Kate has long done cocktail hats well and definitely has helped bring them back in style. While I love a good cocktail hat any day, I agree she really needs to branch out into other styles, especially a proper brimmed hat for once. I think that’s why I still fawn over #5, because it is a bit larger and strays slightly from her preferred hat style. I would love to see her wear something like the one she pulled out for the Order of the Garter in 2008 (https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/ed/a2/35/eda23516f70700b0d5b8dfc277ed366b.jpg) or this other Philip Treacy style (http://www.beautyandthedirt.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/11/Kate-Middleton-Philip-Treacy-hat_0.jpg), although not just in black haha.

  13. It’s very rare to see someone who has a true personal style and she does. I think CP Mary looks lovely as do many other princesses, however, Catherine has managed to carve out a look that is very unique to her and she does it consistently. I love that about her. I think in the end this will make it more about what she does and says and not about what she wears and I appreciate a woman making this happen.

  14. I would love to see her experiment with other styles too. But I don’t think it’s going to happen anytime soon.

    I also think that that once you’ve found your style and feel good in it it’s easier to get something similar. I could for example buy another blue t-shirt and my mother would be like “Really, another blue t-shirt?”. But the thing is that for me it’s a different shade, a different material, a different cut…

  15. Perhaps it is just the pose, but #5 one is my favourite. She looks so polished there. For me, a lot of it is about the hair. I find messy hair distracting and unprofessional.

  16. My favourite is easily the very elegant #5. I agree with you, sometimes I wonder why she needs so many hats that are so similar (to be honest I feel that way about much of her wardrobe!) Kate always looks the part but I don’t know what it is, I’d just like to see a bit moreover oomph from her, styling herself like CP Mary would be great for her…

    • I, too, like #5–its main problem as a hat for a public occasion, I would guess, is obscuring the duchess’s face from the right side. I quite like the aqua or turquoise hat as well. 1 and the 2009 pale wedding hat (especially that one!), which depart most from the pattern, do nothing, however, for me–or for the duchess, in my opinion.

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