After yesterday’s amazing day of wild hats for Ladies’ Day and the Queen’s unexpected win of the Gold cup, the hats and atmosphere at Ascot today was decidedly more sedate. I’m so happy to again welcome Katie Vale of Katie Vale Designs to share her opinions on today’s Royal Ascot hats.
Queen Elizabeth in an Angela Kelly design
Katie Vale: I really like the textured sinamay, and think it goes well with the texture of her outfit. I like the shape of the brim. However I think both the flowers & the feathers are too much. I think the flowers actually look a bit tatty and as though they are from the bargain bucket of a haberdashery! It’s a shame as the blue ostrich feathers are gorgeous.
Royal Hats Blog: I nearly cried when I saw this… thing. I can’t bring myself to call it a hat. It’s a starched crocheted doily molded into a cartoon caricature of a hat, trimmed with dollar store flowers and plonked on the head of one of the loveliest women in the world. Of all the designers out there making beautiful hats, I cannot understand why she would choose this. I agree Katie- the blue feather is the only redeemable thing about this hat. The rest should be driven over by a large truck.
Countess of Wessex in a Jane Taylor design
Katie Vale: I actually just gasped when I saw this picture! Stunning! Gorgeous shape! Such a lovely flow to it. And the delicate black cherry blossom on it is just lovely! Hoorah for this hat!!!
Royal Hats Blog: I am awed speechless by this hat. It is just beautiful! It is similar to the “Lady A” design, also by Jane Taylor, Sophie wore for the Luxembourg royal wedding last October and the hat she wore earlier this week for the Order of the Garter. It is a great shape on Sophie and works particularly well with her new hairstyle. I agree Katie- this is one of the best hats we’ve seen this week!
Princess Michael of Kent in a Philip Treacy design
Katie Vale: Very nice. Very unoffensive and nice subtle tones. It doesn’t excite me, but I think that’s due to the colour than the design (I’m not a blue girl!). the disc shape is lovely and very “in” at the moment. And the grey flowers are lovely, but I’m not sure about the pale blue piece of chiffon in there, I don’t think it’s necessary if I’m honest! But overall it works
Royal Hats Blog: Marie-Christine wore this hat to Ascot last year (and to Epsom in 2012) but I’m not complaining because it is a stunning hat. Since blue is one of my favourite colours, I’m going to shower love on this hat! It’s fun, dramatic and whimsical- exactly the kind of things you want an Ascot hat to be.
Princess Sarvath El Hassan of Jordan
Katie Vale: Very pretty and delicate colour. But I think the feathers appear messy and unstructured. Feathers can be used in many ways, but this looks as though there is no real shape to it at all and it’s just plonked on! I’m not feeling the love for this one! (Also note that if in the Royal Enclosure you must have a hat or fascinator with a base at least 10cm in diameter, or you won’t be allowed in. So in theory this shouldn’t be allowed in the Royal Enclosure. Therefore, I don’t think it’s grand enough to sit next to the Queen at Royal Ascot!)
Royal Hats Blog: I really like the look of an unstructured feather fascinator tucked into a neat chignon like this one. The teal feathers are a beautiful contrast against Princess Sarvath’s hair colour and skin tone and the overall effect is rather playful and fun. For arrival at Ascot with the Queen however, I agree with you Katie. This is not nearly enough hat. I wonder what they do when the Royals themselves don’t meet the dress standards of the Royal Enclosure….
Other notable hats today included those worn by: Pippa Middleton (I loved her whole outfit); Julia Bradbury; Lisa Scott-Lee; Brix Smith-Start and Dawn O’Porter.. Please join us here tomorrow for our final day of Ascot coverage. Thanks again to Katie Vale who has made our posts this week so very enjoyable!
UPDATE- Photos of Princess Haya were finally released showing her at Day 4 of Royal Ascot in this absolutely divine white picture hat. Had we seen this earlier, I’m quite certain Katie Vale and I would have deemed this one of the most spectacular hats of the week. Magnificent!
Photos from Getty as indicated; Rex Features via AP; and Rex Features via AP.
Thank you Audrey for posting those images of HM. I love the yellow. Shorter crowns with the slightly wider brim suits her so much better to my view. And tilted back just a wee bit is more attractive too. I wish they fit her dress coats a little closer to her body or gave them more shape. I wonder which one is more set in their ways, Ms Kelly or HM!
Was princess Haya in ascot day 5?
I don’t believe Princess Haya attended Day 5 of Ascot this year.
I think Angela Kelly is a very amateurish designer, more a local dressmaker vibe. Lilibet evidently is happy because she keeps wearing the designs. Coupled with the fact that the Queen’s body shape is changing, as with all older people, she rarely looks really crisply tailored these days. I think Angela Kelly hat crowns are particularly mannish and ugly. I have felt this way for some time and was disappointed with many of the outfits worn through the Jubilee celebrations last year.
Savarth always wears her national dress of sari to all events and in all countries. A hat would look ridiculous with it, and it is in keeping with her culture for woman to decorate their hair with fresh flowers, so the feathers are an acceptable substitute I feel.
I can’t love these hats that completely obscure one side of the wearer’s view, this appears to be a particular penchant of the Brits and Europeans.
The one thing Ascot does give me though is a good laugh as everyone’s aim appears to be more ridiculous than the next person’s. talk about the Emporer’s new clothes!
You must be someone with good taste!
Sorry, but I don’t see the difference with the other hats and outfits of the Queen. No offence, but I have never seen her in something modern or tasteful. Princess Michael should be given an acting part in Absolutely Fabulous!!!
I disagree. There are many times when the Queen looks very elegant, modern and beautiful. The pink hat and coat she wore for the first Ascot day on Tuesday is an example.
I do agree about the part about Princess Michael. She seems like a very extravegant woman.
Well, when I read your comment, I thought: “Well, may be I was a bit harsh”. So I gave google the command “Queen outfits”…and I found one outfit I rather liked:
The shape of the hat is also good.
The closed coats without a collar she always is wearing, just don’t do any good for her Majesty.
I agree with Maryanne. You might not have the same dress taste as the Queen but it is not right to say that she is not tasteful. So many of her dresses and coats are elegant and so nice. What about these ones?
Germaine- the bright pink outfit you linked to was designed by Stewart Parvin and the hat was made by Rachel Trevor Morgan. I agree with you- the closed, collar-less coats often worn by the Queen (usually designed by Angela Kelly) are not flattering on her. I think that Stewart Parvin’s designs, which usually include a collar of some type (see here, here here and here) are much better. Of course- Stewart Parvin is not perfect. He made Zara Phillips’ wedding dress and I thought that was a disaster.
Could it be, that Sophie’s hat really is the same hat she wore to the wedding? To me (an amateur when it comes to hats though) it seem exactly the same. Only the decoration has been changed.
I was questioning the same thing.
Sophie, Countess of Wessex and Jane Taylor are a match made in millinery heaven.I just adore this hat however I would like it if she had one of her three similar hats in a different colour.
Yes, you’re right. The queen could have the same experience with Rachel Trevor Morgan but she keeps going with Angela Kelly
QEII’s hat here is nothing we have not seen a zillion times with others same shape/style. But I like the look – you called it doily looking and I think for summer outdoors esp for a horse race it’s great. She looks pretty and I am a fan of all the blue color here. RE:Princess Sarvath El Hassan of Jordan – my thoughts exactly – it did not meet the dress code which is very specific. I also am surprised she was allowed to ride with the queen – I would think someone would have stand by loaner hats or when there is such a strict dress code no one would have made such a blunder…maybe her hat she REALLY brought to wear got crushed in travel??? This one looks like an after thought – does not even go with the outfit! It’s fluff and her outfit is very tailored & not at all dressy – looks like an office suit! Sophie’s is killer again today! And I do like Princess Michael of Kent a lot – I find the ‘float’ of chiffon ads movement and for me is a non distracting additional design element. I adore her in really pale colors and creams.
Oh and I will take QEII”s sapphire any day she is ready to give it to me – looks fab on this color blue!
That brooch is spectacular, isn’t it? You’re right- the cornflower blue of her coat sets it off brilliantly.
It does not happen often but there is no arguing that the Queen’s hat today was a total disaster. I agree with whoever said earlier this week that Angela Kelly’s hats are looking more and more like amateur craft projects and she needs to retire immediately.
Hats of Princess Michael and The Countess were very theatrical today. I suppose that is fine for this event but not for many others.
I don’t know why those hats need to be so costumey. What is wrong with a simple, nice hat?
Princess Sarvath was in a national dress, so she didn’t need hat. I like this blue colour.
And I don’t understand why Sophie bought 3 similar hats.
I agree. A hat wouldn’t have been proper with a Jordan national dress and it would have looked funny. Princess Haya does wear hats because she wears occidental clothes. I think that Sarvath’s fascinator is her way to honor the Ascot dress code. It is sedate and discreet, and it works.
You do not have to be so rude about Her Majesty’s hat. It is a very nice lace hat and looks very beautiful on her.
I don’t think she was being rude!! I think she was rather funny! It is a terrible hat. The pink hat the Queen wore on Tuesday was just beautiful. I hope she wears it again soon.
How do you know Hat Queen is a she? There are other queens out there…
Your comment made me giggle! I am indeed a “she”! A middle aged, hat-loving “she”!