Imperial Royals At Calligraphy Exhibition & Medical Award

Last Thursday, July 27, Princess Hisako of Takamado attended an international calligraphy exhibition in Tokyo. For this event, she paired a black floral suit with a pyramid-centered saucer hat in black straw. This is one of my favourite Imperial royal looks in a long time- the streamlined, modern shaped hat and traditional floral print of the suit are a slightly unexpected combination but so chic.

Princess Hisako, Jul 27, 2017 | Royal Hats

Princess Hisako, Jul 27, 2017 | Royal Hats Princess Hisako, Jul 27, 2017 | Royal Hats

Designer: unknown
Previously Worn: I believe this hat is new

Today, Princess Nobuko, Princess Kiko and Crown Princess Masako joined the Empress at the annual Florence Nightingale awards in Tokyo. Empress Michiko repeated her white raised edge saucer with transparent lattice underbrim, trimmed with a pale celery silk knotted bow and silk leaves. It’s another ensemble of exquisitely subtle touches that the Empress wears, beautifully.

Empress Michiko, Aug 2, 2017 | Royal Hats  Empress Michiko, Aug 2, 2017 | Royal Hats

Designer: likely Akio Hirata
Previously Worn: Mar 1, 2017

Princess Nobuko looked to be wearing a pillbox in the same grey silk print as her dress. Princess Kiko topped her pale blue suit with a coordinating pillbox and Crown Princess Masako wore a demure cream bumper hat.

Imperial Royal Family, Aug 2, 2017 | Royal Hats

 Thoughts about these Imperial royal hats?

Catching Up On Royal Hats

After a short vacation, I’m back refreshed and ready for what will be a very busy upcoming month of royal hats! Thanks so much for keeping the conversation going while I was away- you readers are absolutely wonderful. A few of you have requested a post with photos of all the hats we missed over the past week – here we go.

May 21:  Princess Anne attending Day 2 of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland 2017 in a repeated hat with tall, navy straw crown and cream brim trimmed with navy straw bow loops, silk flowers and feather quills. She wore it most recently in June 2015 at garden party (jump to this post for better views).

May 24: Queen Sonja of Norway opened the 65th Bergen International Festival in a repeated gold straw hat with high, domed crown, flat brim and wide silk hatband we saw her last wear in June 2015.

Queen Sonja, May 24, 2017 | Royal Hats

May 24: The Duchess of Cornwall presented RAF Halton with new colours. She repeated a hat by Lock and Co. with a tall crown, upturned kettle brim and side bow in nubbly natural straw.

May 24: The Duke of Edinburgh and the Earl of Wessex presented the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award gold awards at Buckingham Palace in a pair of straw Panama hats

May 25: Queen Elizabeth visited the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital and an equestrian farm in Staffordshire, repeating the orange straw cloche with wrap around the crown that she first wore for Ascot last year. Designed by Angela Kelly, the hat is trimmed with orange straw bows, silk roses and royal blue feathers.

May 25: Empress Michiko, Princess Kiko, Princess Hisako and Princess Nobuko attended the Japanese Red Cross Society annual meeting. Empress Michicko repeated a white saucer with blow and transparent lattice underbrim and Princess Kiko repeated a bowler variation with upturned, kettle brim and pleated hatband in the same ice blue printed silk as her suit. Princess Hisako wore a charcoal grey straw design with wide, dotted hatband sash that tied in a bow at the side while Princess Nobuko repeated a white hat with rolled brim and crisp navy hatband with white pinstripes.

Imperial Royal Family, May 25, 2017 | Royal Hats

Empress Michiko, May 25, 2017 | Royal Hats  Princess Kiko, May 25, 2017 | Royal Hats

Princess Hisako, May 25, 2017 | Royal Hats  Princess Nobuko, May 25, 2017 | Royal Hats

May 25: Princess Eugenie co-hosted a Buckingham Palace garden party with her father to celebrate the Centenary of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA). She wore a new gold straw hat with inverted crin brim by Nerida Fraiman (it’s the Crin Disc Gold from SS 2017). I adore the shape and sheen of this design.

  

May 26: Princess Anne delivered closing remarks at the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland 2017 (read parts of her speech here). She looked fantastic in an emerald green dress topped with a cream straw hat with diagonal crown and sharply upturned brim on one side. The hat is trimmed with a mass of cream feathers on the lowered side of the brim and stacked hatbands in gold and caramel straw. While the hat follows a very similar shape and colour to the one she debuted for Easter last year, I think this one is different. Have any of you seen it before?

May 27: Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko travelled to Toyama to attend the 68th National Tree-Planting Festival. On the first day of their three day visit, Empress Michiko repeated a large, white, domed saucer hat trimmed in a black and caramel striped silk bow she most recently wore during their last visit to this region in October 2015.

Empress Michiko, May 27, 2017 | Royal Hats

May 27: Charlotte Casiraghi photographed attending a wedding in Italy in a white cuffed calot hat. It’s a repeated pice that was worn several decades earlier by her mother, Princess Caroline.

Hermosa #CharlotteCasiraghi asistiendo a una boda en Roma | 27 de Mayo 2017

A post shared by Charlotte Casiraghi (@charlottexcasiraghi) on

Is it the same hat? #carolinedemonaco #princesscarolineofmonaco #charlottecasiraghi #Monaco

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May 28: Empress Michicko on Day 2 in Toyama in a large white saucer with a coordinating bow to her lime and black and white hounds tooth checked suit she first wore June 1, 2014. How wonderful is that hit of lime!

Empress Michiko, May 28, 2017 | Royal Hats  Empress Michiko, May 28, 2017 | Royal Hats

Empress Michiko, May 28, 2017 | Royal Hats 

May 28: Queen Elizabeth en route to Crathie Church for Sunday Service in a repeated magenta straw hat with upswept brim, white straw hatband, straw loops at the side and a pair of magenta feathers. Jump over to this post for better photos from this Rachel Trevor Morgan design’s most recent outing in May 2016.

May 29: Empress Michicko wrapping up the visit to Toyama in her repeated, teal blue, rimmed saucer with grey, black and white plaid bow in the same silk as her skirt. She wore it last June 4, 2016

Empress Michiko, May 29, 2017 | Royal Hats  Empress Michiko, May 29, 2017 | Royal Hats

May 31: Today, The Duke of Edinburgh hosted a reception at Buckingham Palace to celebrate the London Youth charity’s 130th anniversary. He looked rather dapper in his straw Panama hat.

I think that catches us up! I think there’s only one hat here that didn’t make it into your discussion- Princess Anne’s cream straw hat worn with the green dress. I think this is a knockout outfit for her and am curious to hear what you think. Any final thoughts on the hats we’ve seen over the past week?

Imperial Royals At Floral Events

Last Thursday, Princess Nobuko of Mikasa officially opened the 2017 International Roses & Gardening Show in Saitama Prefecture. For this event, she wore a white straw hat with straight sided crown and rolled brim, wrapped in a swath of pale blue tulle. I often straddle the fence when it comes to such frothy hats but this one, paired with he blue and green floral dress, seems wonderfully appropriate for this event.

Princess Nobuko, May 11, 2017 | Royal Hats

Princess Nobuko, May 11, 2017 | Royal Hats

Designer: unknown
Previously Worn: I believe this hat is new

Last Saturday, Emperor Akihito, Empress Michiko and Princess Hanako visited the 50th anniversary exhibition of the Japanese Ikebana Art Association in Tokyo. Princess Hanako, who is Honorary President of the Association, wore a cream hat with rounded crown and mushroom brim that looked to be made of crin (or some type of transparent material). The hat is embellished with what appears to be green shoots (or vines?) and tiny leaves placed around the brim. I can only hope Hanako wears this again soon so we can have a better look. I’m intrigued.

Princess Hanako, May 13, 2017 | Royal Hats

Princess Hanako, May 13, 2017 | Royal Hats

Designer: unknown
Previously Worn: I believe this hat is new
Photos  from Mainichi and JNN News

Wrapping Up Imperial Royal Tour

In the midst of a busy schedule of royal events over the past two weeks, I completely forgot to wrap up the Imperial visit to Thailand. My apologies!

On Sunday, March 5, Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko arrived in Thailand (see their departure from Vietnam earlier that day at this post). The Empress disembarked the flight in a new grey saucer hat with flat bow across the front, trimmed with a dotted black net tulle veil. The addition of the net veil is a trimming departure for the empress, one that gives a bit of textural contrast to the hat.

Empress Michiko, Mar 5, 2017 | Royal Hats

Empress Michiko, Mar 5, 2017 | Royal Hats  Empress Michiko, Mar 5, 2017 | Royal Hats

After a quick 24-hour visit, the Imperial couple departed on Monday, March 6 to return home. For their departure, Empress Michiko wore her ninth new hat of the tour. The pale grey rimmed saucer hat is trimmed with a double looped half bow in the same darker grey silk as her dress. This design is not a departure from anything else we’ve seen on the Empress, although the balance between the saucer brim and the side bow is particularly pretty in this piece.

Empress Michiko, Mar 6, 2017 | Royal Hats

The royal couple arrived home on the evening of Monday, March 6. The Empress disembarked the Japan airways jet in a repeated saucer hat in the same tiny black and white check as her coat, trimmed with a large curved bow.

Empress Michiko, Mar 6, 2017 | Royal Hats

Empress Michiko, Mar 6, 2017 | Royal Hats  Empress Michiko, Mar 6, 2017 | Royal Hats

Empress Michiko, Mar 6, 2017 | Royal Hats

Designer: Designer: unknown
Previously Worn:March 18, 2016January 19, 2015

Most of the extended Imperial royal family greeted the Emperor and Empress at the airport. Crown Princess Masako wore a new black (or navy?) hat with upfolded velvet brim, edged in braid trim. Some of you may recall that she wore a green version of this same for the Emperor and Empress’ departure.

 Crown Princess Masako, Mar 6, 2017 | Royal Hats

Crown Princess Masako, Mar 6, 2017 | Royal Hats

Princess Kiko,  Princess Kako both wore variations on bowler hats while Princess Mako repeated a navy cloche with upturned, short trim trimmed with a bow on the side. 

Imperial Royal Family, Mar 6, 2017 | Royal Hats

Imperial Royal Family, Mar 6, 2017 | Royal Hats

Princess Hanako repeated a white cloche variation with short mushroom brim and wide grey ruched hatband. Princess Nobuko looked to be wearing a large navy saucer hat (worn at a wonderfully jaunty angle) while her daughters Princess Akiko wore a grey trilby with navy hatband and Princess Yoko sported a white design with short brim and tall crown. Princess Tsuguko of Takamado looked to be wearing her navy indented pillbox with back bow and Princess Ayako topped her camel coat with a matching hat that appears to be trimmed in a Lady Amherst pheasant feather.

Imperial Royal Family, Mar 6, 2017 | Royal Hats

Several of you have commented about the tradition for extended Imperial family members to greet the Emperor and Empress at their departure and arrivals home- it is a lovely tradition and one that allows us to see lots of hats! Which designs here stand out most to you?

The Imperial Household Agency announced last week that the gruelling pace of this tour caused sickness for the Empress, who has now suspended engagements in order to recover. We wish her the very best in her return to health.

Imperial Royals Set Off For Vietnam

Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko departed Japan yesterday en route to Vietnam where they will take part in a six-day visit. The royal couple were seen off at the airport for this historic visit (Akihito is the first emperor to visit Vietnam) by members of their extended family. Empress Michiko looked very smart in her repeated black saucer hat trimmed in origami folded bow, backed in the same black and white hound’s tooth check as her skirt.

Empress Michiko, Feb 28, 2017 | Royal Hats

Designer: Likely Akio Hirata
Previously Worn: Mar 16, 2015

Crown Princess Masako topped her emerald coat with a matching hat in velvet felt. The flat crown and upturned brim shape of this hat is one we’ve seen on Masako before but in a saturated colour and with the addition of braid around the brim edge, the familiar shape is transformed into something special.

  

Designer: unknown
Previously Worn: this hat is new

Princess Kiko wore a cloche variation in camel felt with diagonally upturned brim. The brim shape is an unexpectedly pert departure for Kiko that works well for her.

Princess Kiko and Princess Masako, Feb 28, 2017 | Royal Hats

Designer: unknown
Previously Worn: this hat is new

Princess Mako and Princess Kako both sported bowler variations with rolled brims and squared crowns in chocolate brown felt. This side-by-side view of these two very similar pieces shows the significant difference that subtle changes in crown height or tightness of brim roll can make to the overall look of a hat.

Designer: unknown
Princess Mako’s hat was worn Jan 30, 2016 and Nov 29, 2013
Princess Kako’s hat was worn Jan 30, 2016. I believe it was also worn by her mother, Princess Kiko on Nov 29, 2013 

Princess Nobuko and Princess Hanako both sported navy and white hats (far left, below). Princess Nobuko’s winter white felt ddesign (a fedora variation maybe?) featured an upturned brim and navy hatband while Princess Hanako’s hat contrasted a cream brim against a navy crown. Both hats are sharp, stylish pieces that I wish we could see up close.

Princess Nobuko and Princess Hanako, Feb 28, 2017 | Royal Hats

Designer: unknown
Previously Worn: I believe both hats are new

Princess Akiko repeated her winter white cloche hat with an upturned cuff brim while her sister, Princess Yoko topped her yellow coat with a matching bowler variation with yellow squared crown and rolled ivory brim. Princess Tsuguko of Takamado wore what looks like an ecru bumper hat with large bow trim at the side.

Princess Tsuguko, Princess Yoko and Princess Akiko, Feb 28, 2017 | Royal Hats

Princess Tsuguko, Princess Yoko and Princess Akiko, Feb 28, 2017 | Royal Hats

Designer: all are unknown 
Previously Worn: Princess Akiko’s hat was worn Jan 26, 2016. I believe Princess Yoko and Princes Tsuguko’s hats are new. 

When the royal couple touched down in Hanoi, Empress Michiko embarked in a mushroom grey hued suit with coordinating hat. One of her larger saucer shapes, the hat is simply trimmed with a curling ribbon in the same two shades of grey as her silk suit. It’s a simple hat but one that works really well with this ensemble.

   

Designer: Likely Akio Hirata
Previously Worn: I believe this hat is new
There are some nice surprises in this group of hats- which designs stand out to you?
Photos from Getty as indicated; Shizou Kambayashi via Associated Press; Kazuhiro Nogi via Getty; REUTERS/Issei Kato

Catching Up With The Imperial Royals

Back on October 12th, , Princess Akiko of Mikasa attended the 14th Commendation Ceremony of People’s Self Defence Officers in Tokyo. For this event, she wore an interesting navy wool top hat with rolled brim and bright turquoise hat band. The shape is a surprise on an Imperial head and while I applaud ANY millinery experimentation in this family, I’m not sure it’s the best shape for Akiko. The bright hat band, however, is a win.

Princess Akiko, Oct 12, 2016 | Royal Hats

On October 14, Princess Hisako of Takamado visited an elementary school while on a trip to Kobe City where she witnessed a disaster preparation drill. She wore a simple black bumper style hat that coordinated well with her black and white suit.

Princess Hisako, Oct 14, 2016 | Royal Hats

And finally, Princess Nobuko of Mikasa was in Kagawa Prefecture over the weekend. On Saturday, she visited the National Leprosy Sanatorium in Takamatsu City in this pale staw pork pie crowned hat with rolled brim, wide grey hat band and pheasant feather trim. It’s a great informal hat that feels stylish on the princess. And how great is it to see some pheasant feathers on an Imperial royal hat? Next time, double the size, please.

Princess Nobuko, Oct 22, 2016 | Royal Hats

What do you think of this trio of Imperial hats?

Photos from SankeiKobe Shimbun; and Yomiuri

Imperial Royals At Spring Garden Party

Members of the Imperial Royal Family attended an annual spring garden party hosted by the Emperor and Empress yesterday at the Akasaka Imperial Garden.

Imperial Royal Family, April 27, 2016 | Royal Hats

Empress Michiko led her family in an elegant white wool suit topped with her large white saucer hat with pink petal trim. Within the realm of the empress’ style, it was a lovely hat for this event.

 Empress Michiko, April 27, 2016 | Royal Hats

Designer: unknown
Previously Worn: April 24, 2014December 2, 2013

Crown Princess Masako was also in white, pairing her suit with a squared bowler hat with short, upturned brim. If you look closely, you will see that the band around the crown of this piece is anchored by very slim braided trim which brings some much needed texture to it.

Crown Princess Masako, April 27, 2016 | Royal Hats

Designer: unknown
Previously Worn: November 5, 2014

From a distance, Princess Kiko’s pale green hat looked to be a silk covered pillbox but closeup, it revealed itself to be a bumper hat with flat, upfolded cuff brim. Her daughter, Princess Mako, wore a square-crowned pink hat with short rolled brim.The shape of this piece looks like a cross between a bowler hat and a top hat… a hybrid that I’m not keen on.

Princess Mako, April 27, 2016 | Royal Hats   Princess Mako and Princess Kiko, April 27, 2016 | Royal Hats

Princess Mako, April 27, 2016 | Royal Hats

Designers: unknown
Previously Worn: Princess Mako’s hat is new. Princess Kiko’s hat was worn April 26, 2007
Princess Hanako of Hitachi, seen below on the left repeated her smart ecru hat with square crown and linear, upturned brim.
Imperial Royal Family, April 27, 2016 | Royal Hats
Princess Nobuko of Mikasa topped her pale aqua suit with a whimsical hat wrapped in a swath of coordinating tulle that leaves one thinking of cotton candy. Princess Princess Akiko’s rounded crown white hat featured what looks like a moulded sash and brim combination in the same pale celery as her suit. Princess Yoko wore a pink hat in the same square crowned shape as the one worn by Princess Mako. A wide ruched silk sash wrapped around the crown, ending in a flat bow on the side.
Princess Akiko and Princess Nobuko, April 27, 2016 | Royal Hats       MIkasa Princesses, April 27, 2016 | Royal Hats
Princess Hisako of Takamado wore an suit and matching hat, both from the same ecru patterned silk. The hat featured a low, flat crown and short, U-shaped curled brim- a shape which, unfortunately, looks like a squashed top hat.
Princess Hisako, April 27, 2016 | Royal Hats
The most dramatic millinery shapes of the day were worn by the younger Takamado Princesses. Princess Tsuguko topped her navy and black printed dress and jacket with a wide brimmed black picture hat trimmed in what looks to be a wide bleu sash (or long navy feathers?) wrapped around the flat sided crown. Princess Ayako topped her pale lilac ensemble with a matching saucer hat, placed at the most rakish angle we’ve seen among the Imperial royals in a long time. Both ensembles showed more personality than we’ve seen in a long time on Imperial Royals, something that fills me with glee!
 Princess Tsuguko and Princess Ayako, April 27, 2016 | Royal Hats  Princess Tsuguko and Princess Ayako, April 27, 2016 | Royal Hats
It is always fun to see such large scale royal hatted events such as this one, even if the hats are not exciting. The last two certainly piqued my curiosity (oh how I wish we could see them better) which is not something I often can say about Imperial millinery. What do you think of this parade of Japanese royal hats? Are any of them worthy for your nomination of favourite hat worn this month?
Photos from Getty as indicated; The Asahi ShimbunThe Asahi Shimbun, The Asahi Shimbun via Getty; and Sankei