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:

1.Duchess of Cambridge, March 13, 2015 in Jane Taylor | Royal Hats  2.Duchess of Cambridge, June 13, 2012 in Rachel Trevor Morgan | Royal Hats  3.Duchess of Cambridge, April 25, 2014 in Hatmaker by Jonathan Howard | Royal Hats

Designers: Jane Taylor, Rachel Trevor Morgan and Hatmaker by Jonathan Howard
First Appeared: March 13, 2015; June 25, 2011April 25, 2014
While hats #1 and #3 have only been worn once, #2 had a second outing on June 13, 2012 (shown above)

4.Duchess of Cambridge, April 13, 2014 in Jane Taylor | Royal Hats   5.Duchess of Cambridge, June 10, 2011 in Jane Corbett | Royal Hats   6.Kate Middleton, August 14, 2009 in Jane Corbett | Royal Hats

Designer: #4 is Jane Taylor; #5 and #6 are Jane Corbett
First appeared: April 12, 2014; June 10, 2011; and August 14, 2009. Each of these hats has been worn just once.

Kate has another navy blue hats that have been worn to just private events so far- This Rachel Trevor Morgan designed cocktail hat with silk rose and tulle net trim was worn to the wedding of friends in April 2012. On February 7, 2016, she brought another navy hat previously worn at private events into public service:

7. Duchess of Cambridge, February 7, 2016 in Lock and Co.| Royal Hats
Designer: Lock and Co.
First appeared:  March 26, 2015 at a private memorial service

What’s interesting to me is the similarity in style between several of these pieces. While all could be considered a percher hat, four of them (#2, #3 and the two linked in the above paragraph) are beret based 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, velvet felt and straw) but this inventory illustrates how much Kate favours this particular type of hat. While some might see this kind of commitment as admirable, I’d love to see her experiment with different styles and shapes. What do you think of Kate’s blue hats?

Photos from Getty as indicated; ANDY RAIN/epa/CorbisPHIL NOBLE/Reuters/CorbisPHIL NOBLE/Reuters/Corbis; CARL COURT/WPA POOL/epa/Corbis;and Karwai Tang via Getty


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

  1. This collection shows why #1 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.

  2. The first hat is indicative of Kate’s evolving style and pretty on her and her hair is most attractive in this style!

  3. I, too, love no. 1 the best. The Rachel Trevor Morgan with the net is my second favorite. And I like them all better when her hair is up.

  4. I vote for No: 1 for the win! Next best is No:2, then 4, then 5, then 6, then 3, then the Memorial Service hat at the link, 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.

  5. 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.

  6. The best of the bunch of the Duchess of Cambridge’s hat collection is the first hat pictured. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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 #1, 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 ( or this other Philip Treacy style (, although not just in black haha.

  10. 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.

  11. 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…

  12. Perhaps it is just the pose, but the first 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.

  13. My favourite is easily the very elegant #1. 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 #1–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. 5 and 6 (especially 6!), which depart most from the pattern, do nothing, however, for me–or for the duchess, in my opinion.

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