British Royals Open Zoo Exhibit

Queen Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh visited the London Zoo today to officially open ‘The Land Of The Lions’ exhibit. For this adventure, the Queen repeated her triangular beret with tall white feather anchored by a large button on the side. Seeing this hat in daylight today showed a surprise- it and its matching coat are actually the palest shade of blue instead of the grey it has read as in photos until now. This colour confirmation improves the hat slightly in my estimation but the odd feather trim and too-pale hue remain hurdles to me really liking this piece.

Embed from Getty Images
Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images
Embed from Getty Images
Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images

Designer: Angela Kelly
Previously Worn: May 8, 2015January 27, 2013; November 27, 2012
What do you think about this uniquely shaped hat on Her Majesty?
Photos from Getty as indicated

45 thoughts on “British Royals Open Zoo Exhibit

  1. I really enjoy this hat and its outfit, I think they complement each other perfectly, both with unusual features (the shape of the hat and the collar), which I would applaud anyway, and here I think they work really well. Although it is a nondescript colour, I think it’s probably pale and blocky enough that the Queen still stands out in a crowd.

  2. I love the look of Her Majesty! It is the very first time that I find A. Kelly’s hat! It is really great on her majesty. The shape, the color, it is perfect!

  3. I love it. I think the colour is marvellous on her and I really like the out of the ordinary design of the hat. It was so interesting seeing that catalogue of brimless designs, there are some horrors there, but I love this combo. We need a bigger brooch next time Brenda but otherwise a fabulous outift.

  4. The colour and the feather are not the issue here for me. The hat is just a really silly shape, and it doesn’t suit the Queen at all. In my humble opinion, of course.

  5. I want to like this hat because the Queen so seldom wears brimless hats, but I am afraid I can’t. The ski slope shape looks weird, like a costume, and the too tall white feather trim isn’t flattering to her at all. The pale gray color is most unflattering to the Queen and it looks like the outfit is very old and the color has faded. The obvious seam running around the hat at the front is not good. The coat looks too baggy on her and the buttons look cheap. It looks a bit too long on her as well and makes her look shorter. As a short lady myself, I understand the importance of getting the proportions of your clothes right.

  6. In 1968 there was a movie called The Lion in Winter. When I saw the photo of the queen with the lioness I immediately thought “The Lioness in Winter” – the lioness referring to the queen and winter to her stage of life.

  7. I really enjoy this for something completely different for HM. My only complaint is that I wish this hat had been completed with one piece of fabric, rather than have that very obvious seam running around the hat; I think that cheapens the look of it unfortunately. Otherwise I really like the color and fabric texture; I even enjoy the feather!

  8. Thank you HatQueen for your frequent and thought provoking posts. I enjoyed seeing the collection of the Queen’s brimless hats. I think the black beret is a timeless and attractive hat. The black hat with veil to visit the Pope is quite crown like and very elegant. I even like the lavender hat even though it is a bit busy. The other hats pictured are just too out there for my taste.

  9. Two things:
    1. The 3rd shot where HM and the beautiful tiger are both gazing at something calls for a “caption this”.
    2. An entire discussion could ensue from all those interesting brimless hats that you so quickly collected and added to the blog. Thanks, HQ, U DA BEST.

    • I would second the suggestion for a discussion on the brimless hats except that only today’s hat and possibly the first hat shown below still are in service, I believe. #2 was a special hat, I assume, designed to be covered by a head scarf to wear in a mosque, never reword or remade. #3 has been replaced (as has hat #10, the replacement for which is out of service too). #4 and #6 have been worn within the last 5 years, I think, but probably for the last time.

      • I’ll third the motion, there’s some very interesting hats in that quick collation! On today’s choice, I didn’t like it at all last time perhaps because it is so different to what HM usually chooses…however, today I find myself warming to it a little. Just a little… Thanks

  10. As others have said, it’s very reminiscent of Queen Mary’s hats. I like the change from the Mad Hatter hats but the feather pains me. just plonked on there. If there had to be feathers – and I’m not sure there had to be – then a few echoing the sweep of the brim rather than sticking straight up would have been better. The coat is fab!

  11. I’m rather slow in commenting today. As JamesB said, it indeed is surprising that so many people like this suddenly. The fabric is rather pretty, but it appears dangerously colorless, it not cement color, from a distance. It would be much harder to spot the Queen from afar when she’s wearing this, instead of wearing her usual bright colors, especially when she’s in front of a somewhat colorless background.
    I suspect that the hat was designed around the unusual yoke. (The dress has the exact same yoke, front and back.) The hat sort of goes with that shape, but whenever the Queen wears this hat, it looks as though she’s squinting. Brims do provide a smidgeon of shade, and this is useful is one wants not to squint. This hat does make one think of Queen Mary.
    Variety’s a good thing, but I don’t find this to be a flattering look on the Queen, although obviously lots of other people today do.

  12. I love the hat and the coat! My only suggestion would be that the coat could be just a little shorter. Her Majesty, I believe, is wearing slightly shorter and more board heels on her shoes. (As well she should! I’m down to just flats and I’m only 68!) With this change in shoe, I believe she would still be modest when sitting down with slightly shorter dresses and coats and it would improve the over all look. What do you think HatQueen?

    • I think anyone still working full time at 90 should be allowed to wear pyjamas all day! You do raise an interesting point- I wonder how the hats would read with the whole ensemble if the hemlines were a nip shorter?

  13. She best watch out with that feather – the lions might think she is lunch, as in a nibble of a good tasting ostrich! At least with this shape she’s not in her more typical Mad Hatter/cake box hats. Not thrilled still however, with the sharp angle on this one – it would have looked better with a softer edge on it.

    • BTW, I had a coat like this in the 50s that had a sash at the neck collar that fastened with a hidden button – it was a bit cumbersome to wear if it needed to be opened however. but then we never would see HM ‘unbuttoned’ I bet!

  14. I must say, I’m surprised everyone likes this so much! I applaud the change, but I’m just not quite sure…. I think it could be the feather. Hmm. It does scream for a brooch on that goat Queen Mum style though. Actually this while look is a bit of a tribute to the Queem Mum in wartime isn’t it (the brooch is one of hers too!)

  15. I love this look. The design lines are smooth and clean. The hat and ‘collar’ are like mirror images of each other. I like that the necklace is clearly visible. It often falls behind the Queen’s outfit.

        • Queen Elizabeth usually wears hats with brims but there have been several brimless designs worn since 2000:

          Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images

          Then, of course, there are the fur hats- here are a few:
          Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images
          Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images

  16. I’m absolutely in love with that ensemble. Something different. Thrilling! And I do like the coat (as well as the dress underneath, we’ve seen several times before.) – perfect spot for a (much larger) brooch. And I agree with all of you who think that the hat deserves a brooch as well!

  17. I love Her Maj in pale colours, so you won’t hear me complain about this pale blue. I do think this hat is crying out for a large, sparkling brooch to be worn in place of the button. Button details are fine for those of us with no diamond brooches to spare but the Queen could certainly dig around in her jewel box to find something that would work! The Queen Mum used to pin diamond brooches onto hats, and it always looked fabulous.

  18. Love, love, love this look! My only desire would be that HM would use a fabulous brooch in place of the “button” to secure the feather. Can you imagine how great that would look?!?!

  19. How appropriate to wear such a fun feathered hat to the zoo! If only HM wore green today. Unfortunately in my parts, St. Patrick celebrations usually turn cartoonish in nature. This is the wonderful hat worn almost a year ago (May, 2015) for a vigil service. Unusual for HM to break her own rule of wearing a hat past 6pm. She ALWAYS looks wonderful!

  20. I love this! It’s so fun to occasionally see a different hat shape and I think this shape is really successful. I do love HM in bright colors, but again the change is good!

  21. Phenomenal! Love the hat shape (not the feather as much) and the coat style with the curving wrap front. Like the colour too. More of the same, please, Your Majesty!

  22. I think I like this hat but I’m not sure about the feather. It’s an interesting shape for sure and I love that it’s different from what she usually wears. Like Annie said the coat and the hat go beautifully together.

  23. I looked back and my opinion has changed a bit..after seeing other coats I have decided I do like this one. I now also like the hat but that plume feather looks tired and needs a change. This might be the first time I thought the colour does not work on anything the Queen has worn. Too pale. I am wondering how this outfit would look in another colour or even a darker grey.
    Nice Design change overall compared to other outfits.

  24. I really like the way the curves of the hat and the collar compliment each other. I think that the soft color of this outfit looks so beautiful on the Queen.

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