Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko visited Yamagata Prefecture over the weekend to take in the 36th National Meeting for the Healthy Ocean. For this event, Empress Michiko repeated her large white saucer hat with curling ribbon detail in the same blue silk as her suit. We don’t often see such a clear side view of Michiko’s hats and this one shows not only how the hat is secured to her head, but how flat (and light weight) the saucer shape is.
Last week, Princess Hanako of Hitachi also made her first appearance following a hip replacement earlier this summer. The Princess was in Hokkaido Prefecture to attend the opening of the sixth annual Ikebana Art Exhibition. For this occasion, she wore a new hat. With a squared crown in the same pale peachy-pink silk as her suit, this hat’s focal point is an unusual but beautiful brim made of transparent straw covered in lace.
We don’t often see such use of lace on royal hats and the use of lace here creates such a lovely contrast of texture on this piece, significantly lightening its overall feel. I appreciate the gentle curve of the brim and while the repeated use of the lace as applique on Hanako’s suit might be a step too far into matchy-matchy territory, the ensemble is wonderful on her.
Previously Worn: I believe this hat is new
While Empress Michiko’s hat is unchanged from her usual style, I’m curious about your responses to Princess Hanko’s more unusual design. What do you think of this lace brimmed hat?