While we’ve not spoken much about upcoming Ascot, I have received numerous private messages filled with anticipation and excitement about the royal hats we’ll see this year. To get us all revved up for this year’s races which kick off next Tuesday, we’re going to take several retrospective looks at some of the hats worn to Ascot over the years by some of our favourite regular royal attendees. One of the heads I keep close watch for during Ascot week is the one belonging to the Countess of Wessex. Sophie has attended at least two days of races every year since beginning of her royal life- here are all the hats she has worn:
2000: June 20 and 21 in unknown designs (notice the unique inverted brim on the green hat)
2001: Hats of unconfirmed design (likely Philip Treacy) and bold shape worn on June 19 and 20
2002: June 19 in Philip Treacy and June 20 in a navy and white hat of unknown design
2003: June 16 and 17 in pale Philip Treacy designs, both with upswept brims and exquisite trim
2004: Sharper lines and exaggerated, diagonal brims worn on June 15 and 16, again by Philip Treacy
2005: Philip Treacy feathered, flowered saucer on June 14 and pink feather trimmed white hat June 15
2008: June 17 in a lime percher and June 18 in a silver ringed headpiece, both by Philip Treacy
2009: June 16 in a black Philip Treacy cocktail hat; June 17 and 18 in hats by Rachel Trevor Morgan
2012: June 20 in a pale grey lattice straw picture hat and June 21 in a lace trimmed percher hat, both by Jane Taylor
2013: From Jane Taylor, a vibrant blue round percher with lace trim on June 18, a statement folded saucer hat with magenta crin twists on June 19 and a black straw wide brimmed wave hat with floral trim on June 21
2015: From Jane Taylor, an oversize cream rimmed vertical saucer with open weave bow on June 16, a folded cream crin striped saucer with feathers on June 17 and repeat of the 2012 statement lattice straw picture hat with updated feathers on June 18
2017: All from Jane Taylor, a natural straw lattice saucer with black silk twist on June 20; a plum straw oversize boater with silk cabbage roses on June 21; white straw vertical saucer with lavish feather trim on June 22
It’s quite the millinery style evolution, isnt it?! During the Philip Treacy years (2002-2010) of high crowns, vertical saucers and massive feathers, I admire Sophie’s millinery bravery on one hand (I adore the hats worn in 2003 and 2007) while on the other, wondering if the scale and harsh lines of numerous pieces overwhelmed her. Jane Taylor’s designs follow slightly softer lines which suit Sophie so well (except for that feathered white potato chip from last year). I think it’s a safe bet to expect more Jane Taylor hats for Sophie this year- I for one, am hoping for more hits of colour.
I’m curious for your thoughts on Sophie’s Ascot hats over the years- which ones stand out to you most? What do you notice about her evolution in Ascot millinery?