Reader Guest Post: Musings on Repeat Royal Hats

The best thing to come out of this summer (besides garden tomatoes!) for me is the group of readers who have contributed guests posts here on Royal Hats. After writing posts about which hats she would like Queen Elizabeth and The Duchess of Cambridge to repeat, I’m so happy to welcome back USA based (but UK born and raised) reader Eliza for her third post about a royal who might surprise you. Welcome back, Eliza!

I really enjoyed all the posts written by other readers over the summer. You all have such great taste! I love being reminded of hats I had forgotten about and seeing how much fashion has changed in even just 20 or 30 years. For my third post, I decided to concentrate on the princess who I think gets the most unfair critisicm for her hats- Princess Beatrice. My choice might be controversial! I admit that Princess Beatrice has worn some hats that don’t receive top marks for style or attractiveness but she has also worn some beautiful hat that don’t seem to get as much public attention. Here are 4 brimmed hats and 4 perchers that I loved on her and wish she’d wear again.

Picture Hat #1  My very favourite hat that Princess Beatrice has ever worn in this beige one. Beige hats can be boring but this one isn’t too light or too heavy, the brim is just the right angle and size and the top isn’t too high. It’s perfect and I don’t know why Bea doesn’t wear it again. Hat by Patricia Underwood

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Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images

Picture Hat #2 This isn’t exactly a picture hat but it has a large brim and I love the flowers on top and under the top part of the brim. Bea also looks knock out gorgeous in navy! Hat by Gina Foster

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Picture Hat #3 I don’t usually like colour blocking but this turquoise and orange hat was so fresh, current and stylish for Princess Beatrice especially with the white dress. Orange is the last colour I’d expect on her but it looks great!  Hat by Laura Apsit Livens 

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Picture Hat #4: I know she has already repeated this hat but I love it so much I had to include it. I think it was better the first time at Ascot with the teal lace dress. One of my favourite combinations and looks for her. Hat by Sarah Cant.

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Embed from Getty Images

Percher Hat #1 I don’t usually like black and navy together but I love this blue flower on this black hat. It almost looks like porcelain! Hat by Nerida Fraiman

Embed from Getty Images Princess Beatrice, Dec 25, 2014 in Nerida Fraiman | Royal Hats

Percher Hat #2 This gold hat is so fun and the colour is stunning on Bea. I love the gold and navy combination, two of her very best colours. Hat by Philip Treacy

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Percher Hat #3 I think the black and white hat that Princess Beatrice wore for the Queen’s 90th birthday last year was one of her top. The coat overshadowed it a bit and I think with a different dress it would be brilliant Hat by Sarah Cant

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Percher Hat #4 In 2012 Princess Beatrice went to church with the Queen and Prince Philip in York. Her white hat with navy flowers is stunning on her and I love the way her hair was styled to go with it. One of her very top looks I think. Hat by Gina Foster

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Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images

I would wear every single one of these hats, that’s how much I love them! I wish she wore them more instead of repeating the ones that don’t look as good.
Eliza, you have suggested a group of eight hats that are each beautiful designs and well suited to Princess Beatrice. There is much speculation about the York princess’ ownership of hats (do they borrow them or buy them) and seeing this group, all but one which have not been repeated, makes me wonder if there’s some truth to the speculation. I agree- each of these hats deserves several more outings. Thanks so much for sharing this with us!
Photos from Getty as indicated

22 thoughts on “Reader Guest Post: Musings on Repeat Royal Hats

  1. Great post Eliza! Beatrice is a fascinating subject for hat watchers, because of her taste for the dramatic (which, with her strong features, she can readily pull off) and her uncommon warm colouring, which allows her to pull off colours which don’t work so well on most other royals,(the bulk of whom have cool colouring) – such as orange, gold, yellow, aqua and teal. She is wearing “her” colours in the hats in Picture Hats #1, 3 and 4, and Percher Hat #2. and here is one of my favourite Beatrice hats, partly because of the perfect colours: note the marine navy, which is actually a teal – and the unusual ochre yellow:
    As many have said, wide-brimmed hats suit her to a T, and I love your choices. I do feel that perchers can be problematic on Beatrice – to me they often seem to look too pretty and little-girly on her, crossing over that thin line into the cute. I think the small scale is the problem, which is why I don’t think Perchers #1 and 4, lovely in themselves, are the best choice for Beatrice. I think her perchers need to be both tall and have a wide base.

  2. Great post, thanks Eliza. I like all of the hats you’ve chosen and recall at the time being bowled over by the teal and orange. It looked great on her, so fresh.

    • Thanks! That teal and orange hat was so unexpected and yes, fresh! I admire that Princess Beatrice takes these kinds of fashion risks.

  3. A very nice array of hats, Eliza! Thank you. I do have to say that I couldn’t agree with you about that gold percher–lovely, flattering shape, but, unlike the blue, in my opinion, not a very good color on the princess. Her hats are often so attractive and elegant, but the rest of her costumes often distract from them, which is a pity.

    • Her fashion is edgier than a lot of royals but that’s what I like about it! I also agree that in the photos where the gold hat is washed out, it doesn’t look nearly as good on her as the photos when it shows up as a warm true gold.

  4. A great selection here Eliza (and welcome back to guest posting!). I especially love the white percher cocktail with sweeping black bow; it is absolutely stunning for such a simple color scheme. I would definitely love to see it paired with a colorful outfit for something different. The teal and orange hat is another favorite.

    I would not be surprised at all that many of the hats worn by Beatrice, Eugenie, and Zara are “borrowed”. We hardly see any of them repeated, but hat hires are a fairly common thing in the UK, so the idea of even the royals getting hats for one occasion would not be absurd. Of course, I’m certain they get first picks from the designers, and in turn the milliners get good exposure for their hats.

  5. Absolutely love this post about Princess Beatrice and adore all the hats chosen. I’m hard-pressed to choose a favorite among them, because each hat is my favorite when I’m looking at it.
    I enjoy the comments from everyone, including the borrowed versus owned theory. I agree with you, Eliza, that her hats are interesting and daring and you make an good point that Beatrice might be overshadowed at times.

  6. These hats all look wonderful on Beatrice, and thanks so much. Eliza, for putting this group together! It’s immaterial to me whether she borrows or owns them, but on that question, here’s a thought — if they are borrowed, they may at some point show up photographed on the head of the actual owner, or if from a milliner, on the head of the customer who eventually buys the borrowed design, so I challenge those of our commenters who are so excellent at digging up obscure photos to see what you can come up with!

  7. Great post and top picks. I agree wholeheartedly; Beatrice is a major hat wearer and when she does it right she looks fabulous. I especially loved the brimmed hats, she really sits bigger hats, my particular favourite is the teal one with the touching, just stunning.

    So she gets a lot of flak, which can be really harsh. She’s not afraid to try new things, but I do sometimes wish she’d take Coco Chanel’s advice and remove the last accessory she put on, I often find her a bit overstyled. Not in these pictures though!

    • Wow, thanks JamesB! I’m thinking more and more that Princess Beatrice uses a stylist for some events (Ascot, the Queen’s 90th birthday and other high profile stuff) but not for others. I think that would explain why she looks so pulled together sometimes. I think stylists also borrow a lot of clothes so that would also explain all of the one-wear hats.

  8. I stand by what I said several months ago and was somewhat dismissed – there’s no way they buy all these hats. I did begin to do a list but job, kids, life took over. Fab post btw.

    • Thanks Clare! Hat Queen once commented that she thought the hats worn more than once are owned outright and the hats only worn once are probably borrowed. This makes a lot of sense to me.

    • Agree completely that the majority of these hats are borrowed rather than bought. My thinking is they are allowed to be borrowed rather than paid for as the majority of people don’t buy hats anymore, especially bespoke hats, so seeing even minor royals wearing a company’s designs is presumably good for business.
      That said, I often wonder if the Yorks advertising your latest designs really would up really be of benefit.

    • I do too! She gets a lot of criticism the times her looks don’t work but when she looks great, she’s usually overlooked. Maybe because all eyes are on Kate those times but I think Beatrice’s hats are more interesting and daring than Kate’s are! I love how she experiments with different kinds of hats.

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