King Philippe and Queen Mathilde of Belgium travelled to Strasbourg today to visit the Council of Europe, the Eurocorps and the European Court of Human Rights. Queen Mathilde wore a new calot hat that was clearly bespoke to match her dress- both pieces are made of the same red silk crepe. The three wide pleats that embellish the hat echo the pleats on the left hip of her dress as well. The hat is not a show piece (vibrant colour aside) but I thought it combined with the dress to make an exceptionally elegant and streamlined ensemble. I prefer it to Mathilde’s other pleated red calot hat– what do you think?
Designer: I suspect Fabienne Delvigne Previously Worn: this hat is new
King Philippe and Queen Mathilde were welcomed by Pope Francis for a private audience today at the Vatican. This visit showed that Queen Mathilde has been granted the Privilège du Blanc – special permission given to specifically designated Catholic queens, duchesses and princesses to wear white during an audience with the Pope. Queen Mathilde wore an exquisite white veil of floral patterned Belgian lace over a simple white dress and coat. The clean lines of the dress and coat allowed the veil to stand out and I thought Queen Mathilde looked stunningly elegant.
Members of the Belgian Royal Ramily attend the annual celebration of the Eucharist in memory of the family`s deceased members at Our Lady Church in Laken today. Queen Mathilde used this occasion to début a new cloche hat. With a grey felt crown and beige felt brim, this hat was trimmed with a simple double band in beige fabric, wrapped around the bottom of the crown. We have not seen Mathilde in many cloche hats and while it is not my favourite millinery style on her, this particular hat brings and air of innocence and beauty that works well for her. Don`t you think Queen Mathilde looks incredibly young in this hat!?
Designer: Fabienne Delvigne
While Queen Paola did not wear a hat, Princess Astrid and Princess Claire also wore new pieces of millinery. Princess Astrid’s black felt hat featured a flat crown and wide, cartwheel brim. The brim was trimmed in the same black silk ribbon that was wrapped around the crown and while this embellishment was simple, I thought it was wonderfully effective and emphasized the graphic lines of the hat. Princess Claire wore a navy fedora with oversize brim. Trimmed with a triple band around the crown that twirled into bow loops on the side, this hat was an excellent colour and scale for Claire. We have seen Princess Claire successfully wear several fedoras in the past and this hat further solidifies this style as one very well suited to her.
Designers of these hats: unknown
In a photo released later yesterday, we could see that Princess Marie-Esméralda wore a black feathered fascinator (below, right). Princess Margaretha and Prince Nikolaus of Liechtenstein were also in attendance; Princess Margaretha wore a simple black pillbox hat.
It is not often that we see the simultaneous début of three new Belgian royal hats so today is special indeed! What did you think of this trio of new millinery?
Members of six royal houses gathered at the former Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp in Oswiecim, Poland today to commemorate the 70th anniversary of its liberation. Gathered together to remember the horrific history of this place, where more than one and a half million people lost their lives, were the King and Queen of Belgium, the King and Queen of the Netherlands, Crown Prince Haakon of Norway, Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden, Crown Prince Frederik of Denmark and the Hereditary Grand Duke and Duchess of Luxembourg.
For the outdoor commemoration ceremony, Queen Mathilde wore a large black faux fur hat.
Queen Máxima repeated a black wool calot hat with wide, folded cuff around the perimeter of the hat. In a respectful and touching gesture, King Willem Alexander wore a traditional Jewish kippah.
Crown Princess Victoria and Hereditary Grand Duchess Stèphanie did not wear hats for this event. This commemoration, however, was not about hats or who attended. It was about taking time to remember a period of purest evil so that through this memory, humanity can keep it from becoming part of our future.
“What is done cannot be undone, but one can prevent it happening again.” – Anne Frank, 7th May 1944
I encourage you to watch the full commemoration ceremony below.
I continue to be surprised at the number of hats and headpieces worn by Queen Mathilde and Queen Máxima that are the same. As their main milliner is the same, one would think this could easily be avoided. That complaint aside, I can hardly wait to hear your responses on this headpiece!
Designer: Fabienne Delvigne Previously Worn: This is a new headpiece
January 20 is the birthday of two prominent royal women- the Countess of Wessex and Queen Mathilde of Belgium. While we’re going to celebrate the Countess of Wessex’s milestone birthday in depth tomorrow, I didn’t want the day to pass without sharing our best wishes for Queen Mathilde on her 42nd birthday today.
Queen Mathilde has worn some very bold hats during her royal life (some are reviewed at this post) and it was difficult for me to choose one piece I would like to see return into circulation. My final choice is a quirky, creative and unique piece that surprised me when Mathilde first wore it in July 2009. It’s not a hat for the faint of heart and that makes me love Mathilde for being brave enough to wear it. I would love to see it brought out for another outing in 2015.
What hat would you like Queen Mathilde to bring back this year?
After looking at all the royal hats we saw in 2014, we narrowed down our least favourites to twelve and then you, dear readers, got to work casting your votes. In an unprecedented result here on Royal Hats, we have not just one but TWO ties within the category of least favourite royal hat of 2014. Here are the top 5 winners (or disasters, as may be the case here):
With two royal head wraps topping this list, I think we can safely deem that the least favourite hat style we saw last year! You can see the other finalist in this category at this post. Stay tuned later this morning to see the winner of our favourite royal hat of 2014.