Best New Royal Hat: January 2016

2016 best new smallThis year, we’re going to take a different approach to choosing our favourite hats of the year. Instead of cramming December with multiple retrospectives and polls, we’re going to choose our favourite new and repeated hats at the end of each month. Next January, we’ll face off the favourites from each month to name top hats of 2016 (and add a third category for royal men’s hats). As there are usually too many hats every month to feature in a single poll, I will draw finalists from the hats that receive a particularly warm response in your comments.

Looking back over the new hats worn over the past month, eight stand out from your comments as the most memorable and successful new pieces. Click on any of the photos below to jump back to original posts with additional photos and information:

1. Zara Phillips Tindall, January 8, 2016 in Suzy O'Rourke Millinery | Royal Hats   2.Zara Phillips Tindall, January 9, 2016 in Danica Erard | Royal Hats   3.Queen Elizabeth, January 10, 2016 in Angela Kelly | Royal Hats

Zara Philips in a blue feathered cocktail hat by Suzy O’Rourke Millinery on January 8
Zara Philips a woven headpiece in navy straw by Danica Erard on January 9
Queen Elizabeth in a split crown winter white felt hat by Angela Kelly on January 10

4.Queen Sonja of Norway, January 17, 2016 | Royal Hats  5.Princess Beatrix, January 23, 2016 | Royal Hats

Queen Sonja in a hat with wide fur collar brim for the Norwegian Silver Jubilee celebrations on January 17
rincess Beatrix in a mushroom grey felt brimmed hat with metallic straw sash trim on January 23

6.Princess Tsuguko, January 26, 2016 | Royal Hats  7.Princess Masako, January 26, 2016 | Royal Hats  8.Empress Michiko, January 27, 2016 | Royal Hats

Princess Tsuguko in a winter white felt fedora with flower embellishment at the back on January 26
Crown Princess Masako in a blue velvet Bretton hat with black ribbon trim on January 26
Empress Michiko in a white saucer hat trimmed in pale teal silk roses and leaves while in the Philippines on January 27

Voting will remain open until February 14 at midnight GMT and each computer or mobile device can vote once per day for multiple hats (this is to accommodate those readers who have multiple household members who wish to take part). To keep things mysterious, results will not be visible until the poll closes.

This is an experiment so please, let me know what you think. Stay tuned tomorrow for a similar poll relating to repeated hats we saw worn in January.

Photos from Media-Mode; Bradley Kanaris via Getty; Stella Pictures; Ragnar Singsaas via Getty;  Rpe/Albert Nieboer/dpa/Corbis;  Motoo Naka/AFLO/Nippon News/CorbisMotoo Naka/AFLO/Nippon News/Corbis; and AFP/Jay Directo via Getty


20 thoughts on “Best New Royal Hat: January 2016

  1. Princess Tsuguko in a winter white felt fedora is one of the best fedoras in history and it’s my top choice today. They are a really good hats here.

  2. Zara’s navy straw looks fab and a shame we can’t see it from more angles. It is a complex hat and a real game changer. I know you are only showing one view per contestant.

  3. Enjoying the monthly poll! January was a month of quality over quantity for new royal hats. I voted for Zara’s inventive navy straw, but I like all of the others, too, especially those of the Japanese imperials.

  4. Wonderful idea! You add fun and it’s great. Thank you very much!
    Just a little question: do we have to vote just for the hat or for the hat and how it fits on the wearer?

    Fedora reappears and it is both modern and chic.

    It is my first comment at your so interesting blog. It is a real pleasure to read your articles. Thank you!

    • Good question- while we’re choosing a favourite hat, how it fits the wearer (and the outfit it’s paired with) inevitably impact the overall impression of the hat. How much you consider these factors is up to you!

    • While it is possible that the brim on this hat is the same as the brim on the hat previously worn with this ensemble, the crown is clearly a new design. I think that qualifies the hat as a new piece. After thinking about these hats more, I suspect a new brim was blocked so that the crown and brim of the hat you see here are a perfect colour match.

  5. Any chance you missed the brown feathery pillbox on Q Maxima on January 30, participating in a meeting on developing decentral sustainable energy in the Art Center in Delft?(Please see if you like.) I haven’t found much more about it but since you are an absolute hat expert, you might?

    • I have yet to find photos of this hat that I can legally share. It’s HIGHLY unusual that not one photo agency has picked up photos of this event. I’ll do my best to keep looking but this hat might have to be included in February’s poll. Don’t worry- I won’t forget about it!

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