British Royals Celebrate Duke of Edinburgh Awards

Queen Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh were joined this morning by the Earl and Countess of Wessex for a Service of Thanksgiving at Westminster Abbey marking the 60th anniversary of the Duke of Edinburgh awards. The queen honored the awards, started by her husband in 1956, with the debut of a new hat.

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In purple velvet felt, the linear design features a square crown and cuff style upfolded brim and is accented with a dark purple velvet hatband which coordinates with the collar and buttons on Her Majesty’s coat. The crisply precise lines of the hat are contrasted with its trim, a mass of purple edged white silk iris blooms, green silk leaves and purple felt curling leaves. The colour of this hat is simply superb on The Queen and its straight lines are a nice change from many of her other current millinery designs.  It’s this trim, however, which lets the hat down. If there were less of it, placed on the side instead of smack dab at the front like a floral headlamp, we’d have a stunner.

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Designer: While unconfirmed, it’s signature Angela Kelly
Previously Worn: This hat is new

The Countess of Wessex repeated her navy straw moulded percher hat with cream and gold feather trim.  I think this is one of the better closeup views we have ever had of this hat- a view where I’m caught more impressed than ever with refined feather work on it. Sophie seems to have reserved this hat for special occasions- the Diamond Jubilee and 70th anniversary of VJ Day- and I wonder if its outing today offers a nod of special respect to her father-in-law and the great success the Duke of Edinburgh awards has been.

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Designer: Jane Taylor
Previously Worn: August 16, 2015June 5, 2012
What are your thoughts about these two hats worn for today’s celebration in London?
Photos from Getty as indicated

26 thoughts on “British Royals Celebrate Duke of Edinburgh Awards

  1. Notwithstanding the softening effect of the flower trim, I find the right-angle geometries of the purple hat harsh and deeply unflattering on the Queen. However, this cardboard cut-out shape is one that would be hard to pull off for anyone not in the first flush of youth – Charlotte Casiraghi is the only royal I can think of who has the face and figure to carry off this shape.
    On the other hand, the purple is fabulously flattering to HM’s complexion; though as usual (sigh) the effect is undermined by the awful omnipresent orange foundation.
    Sophie’s hat works really well for her, and even though I could quibble about the angle of the crown, I enjoy the look and hope to see it again — next time with a suit of a more coordinated, lighter colour.

  2. I only like the color purple of the hat, I don’t like the trim, the crown, the flowers, it is a total miss for me.
    as for Sophie not liking it either.

  3. I love Sophie’s hat. It’s somehow looks simple but with a punch…if I ever need a hat, this will be high on the list.

    HM’S hat is a lovely shade of purple but those flowers right smack in the centre looks too overwhelming for her look.

  4. Her Majesty never ceases to amaze! Fantastic style and color of the whole ensemble; the beautiful hat makes her look happy, and her beautiful smile lights up her eyes. Sophie’s hat is one of my favorites on her. It is stylish and jaunty, yet perfect with her elegant suit..the nude slip underlay of the skirt and pretty trim on the hat look perfect together. She looks spectacular!

  5. I love purple on the Queen. The flowers on the hat are pretty in themselves. They remind me of an African violet I have although much bigger. They are surely placed front and center for a wow effect, but I wonder how it would look with just a big multi loop mass of velvety ribbons. It might blend better with the rest of the outfit and let each element shine equally: the gorgeous coat, the sublime brooch, the Queen’s smiling face.
    I also like Countess Sophie’s hat, although I think I prefer it with the white striped dress she wore in 2015. In these pictures it is not reading the same navy as her outfit. If she’s going for a real matched look, she might do better to go with a hat covered in the same silky fabric as her jacket. Something like Duchess Kate’s little blue hat from Rachel Trevor Morgan might look nice with this suit. I like the suit and it does have a lot going on with the lace, the buttons, etc, so a simpler hat would be fine.

  6. I love Sophie’s hat and I don’t mind her suit. HMs hat is also lovely but I hate the flowers. I’d love it with all felt flowers/leaves like the duchess of Cambridges arriving in Canada hat.

  7. Love the velvet trim on HM’s coat, it looks so luxurious, especially in this most royal of colours. I don’t mind the hat and I don’t mind the flowers – although agree they should be less centred on the hat. I don’t particularly care for the purple felt leaves, which brings me to a botanical quibble, though it’s with Ms Kelly not you, HQ.

    The flowers look like irises, right enough (generally a spring flower where I come from), but the leaves are completely wrong! Irises, whether bearded, Siberian, Louisiana, Japanese, Dutch or whatever, have sword-like foliage, ie, stiff and upright. They don’t have dinky little leaves like this.

    Yes, yes, it’s only a hat trim. But if you’re going to nature for your inspiration you should either be true to nature or spin the whole concept off into a new place. Half and half (identifiable flower, random foliage) is just a bit wet.

  8. The color and shape of the hat and coat are great but I think the flowers are a miss for me….too much white on a dark purple hat with black trim. Sophie looks lovely but I agree the hat looks dark gray not blue and I think the suit looks too short and too tight. Oh if only I had these small issues with my wardrobe.

  9. 1. I wouldn’t change ONE THING about HM’s gloriously purple ensemble, even the hangy-downy green leaf in the front which gives the flower bouquet an even more three dimensional quality – simply magnificent! What a wonderfully regal color for her!
    2. Sophie’s hat looks much more charcoal than navy to me.
    3. I can’t help but compare these two beautifully turned out royals with the Monaco royals earlier this week. NO comparison, je regret.
    4. I ate too much turkey today!

  10. I’d actually like to see the Queen’s hat with that floral headlamp just plucked off. When I first saw this outfit this morning, I thought it odd that the coat had dark purple trim and buttons and hat had big white flowers. Up close one can see the same dark purple velvet on the hat, but those white flowers are overwhelming in every sense: too big, too summery, too centered. I presume there must be a floral motif somewhere in that dress fabric, although it looks more geometric than floral to me. The color and the coat are perfection, and the general shape of hat, while probably a little too tall, isn’t bad. I like the brim. Message to Angela Kelly: please edit down those white flowers somehow.

  11. Both ladies look lovely, but HM looks as though she has a bouquets of flowers on her head!
    I’m dating myself but remember when the Duke of Edinburgh’s awards were introduced. Diamond anniversary – extraordinary!

  12. I must say: I LOVE the Queen’s hat (the whole outfit), and while most of you seem rather unhappy with the flour-trim I’m loving it! An absolutely gorgeous mad-hattery-touch. Chapeau, Mrs. Kelly!

  13. It’s a fab purple on HM, and the coat is lovely. The hat is a standard shape now (it’s the same shape as the fuchsia one she debuted at Ascot a couple of years back) and whilst I like it, I agree the flowers are off. For me they’re just too summery for this winter coat. If they could be sorted out I think we’d have a winner.

    Sophie’s outfit is still lovely – a fab look for her.

  14. Overall a great new hat for HM, but I agree that the floral trim should be more off-center (or off-centre, if you prefer). The brooch is superb!

    Sophie looks excellent here, and I love everything she’s wearing, although I think a darker slip under her skirt/dress bottom would’ve worked better with the navy blue theme she has going (granted, it would make the design harder to see).

  15. You hit the nail on the head, dear Hat Queen, about HM’ s hat. I do love the color and the coat it is paired with and the brooch! I like the simplicity of the lines of Sophies’ s hat with her beautiful suit!

  16. I love this hat on Sophie – but the suit she has on is horrible looking – HM looks great – I’m not minding the headlamp of flowers atop it that much – but it would have looked better reduced in size of flower groupings and moved to the side just a tish as you said.

  17. I’m with you totally about HM’s hat today…the whole floral headlamp hits the nail on the head….so near yet so far….

    Overall though I thought they both looked really lovely!

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