Hat Renovation in Sweden

Royal HatsReader Sarah contacted me earlier this week with an interesting hat observation.  Do you notice anything between this hat, worn by Queen Silvia for King Carl Gustaf’s official birthday celebration in April 2004:

Swedish Royal Family

and this hat, worn by Queen Silvia for Princess Estelle’s christening on May 22, 2012

Embed from Getty Images

Great observation, Sarah! It is clearly the same hat, with the addition of seed pearls, pleated silk ribbon, feathers and silk blossoms. While I am mildly surprised that Queen Silvia recycled a hat for this important event, the transformation of this hat really does make it into a completely different piece. It is an interesting idea to take a previously worn hat and “jazz it up” for a single, important event (instead of ordering a bespoke hat for that same event which would likely be worn just once). This approach to hat recycling greatly intrigues me.

Which way do you, dear readers, prefer this straw hat? Thanks again, Sarah, for sharing this great observation.

17 thoughts on “Hat Renovation in Sweden

  1. I absolutely love the second rendition. Who better than a Queen to carry off all the wonderful extras of netting, pearls, flowers and feathers? It’s not too much for me. (I find the pearls delicious.)

    I enjoyed all the comments noting placement and agree that setting the hat further back on her head… It actually becomes a Queenly “crown” against her pretty dark hair.

    As others have said, her dark hair contrast makes it, and it left me wondering that light, blonde hair may not work with this hat.

    Thanks for sharing these moments in time with us.

  2. I very much like the revamped version for its occasion – a princess’s christening is the perfect place for a bit of feathery fluff and softness. Obviously there aren’t so many occasions when such a hat would look appropriate!

  3. Queen Silvia is a stunning lady who can carry off bold and decorated hats. I just think that both these hats miss the mark. The recycled one looks better, especially with regards to placement on the head, except that the trim is too heavy . I think the English word “fussy” applies here.

  4. I love seeing Royals economize! But, I think the redone version has just too many flourishes. Feathers, flowers, netting, pearls, ribbon. Two items would have been great.
    Also, placement is key! Wow, what a difference that makes!

  5. The second incarnation of the hat seems a but random – as if the milliner were clearing our a bin of oddments. But I do appreciate the idea of recycling. These hats are fabulously expensive – even for a Queen.

  6. I like the “jazzed up” hat the best. In a side note, wasn’t Princess Lilian’s hat so wonderful in the first photo!

  7. I prefer the simpler hat worn for the King’s birthday; the additions to the hat to “jazz it up” seem to be more than needed and overloaded the hat, especially when combined with the lace dress. I would have liked to have seen a simpler enhancement of just the pearl netting, or just the flowers and/or feathers, but not all together. I do agree with beachgal that the placement of the hat is better in the newer photo.

  8. I like the straw one better because it lends itself to more wear use probably — but I like the placement on her head of the jazzed up version better – the way she has it placed in the older photo reminds me of those tubans I hate to much!

      • Ok, the original version was just wrong somehow and you point out the obvious: a hat that looks suspiciously like a turban helmet a la Buck Rogers,in a meh sort of colour and design.

        I love the second incarnation . Just add net, satin pleats and pearls, set it back an inch or two to allow it to be set off by her dark hair and you have an utterly divine confection that suits both Silvia and the occassion to perfection.

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