Inventory: Duchess of Cambridge’s Red Hats

The Duchess of Cambridge celebrates her 36th birthday and in honor of this event, I thought we’d continue our inventory series with a peek at all of the different red designs in her millinery closet. Since beginning her royal life, Kate has worn four red hats- here they are in the order they were introduced:

1.Embed from Getty Images   2.
Designer: Silvia Fletcher for Lock and Co.; Rachel Trevor Morgan
First Worn: July 1, 2011;  September 25, 2011

3.Embed from Getty Images 4. Embed from Getty Images
Designer: Silvia Fletcher for Lock and Co.; Gina Foster
First Worn: June 3, 2012;  April 7, 2014

UPDATE: Since this post was published, the Duchess has added the following red hats to her wardrobe:

5. Embed from Getty Images  6.
Designer: unconfirmed (likely Lock & Co.); Juliette Botterill
First Worn: March 11, 2018; July 7, 2019

Some of you may also remember Kate wearing this red silk rose and net fascinator of unknown design in April 2010 to a friend’s wedding. The piece has not made a reappearance since the royal engagement and I strongly suspect it is no longer in Kate’s wardrobe.

That leaves the four designs above on which to focus our discussion. The first one, studded with maple leaves and worn in Canada on our national holiday (something that endeared the new Duchess to us Canadians!) fits such a small and specific niche that a repeat appearance doesn’t seem likely. The remaining three are an interesting trio- despite all being small in scale, they follow distinctly different shapes. I adore the jaunty movement and bold trim of #3 and I think Kate does to, since she ordered a twin of this hat in blue for her second visit to Canada in 2016. The delicate rosette and leaf trim on #4 is also a lovely elevation to this classic pillbox, a shape that can sometimes be a little boring.

Red is a great colour on Kate and while I understand why, at this point in her royal life she often eschews fashion that draws attention, it would be lovely to see her add a few more red designs into rotation.

What do you think of Kate’s red hats?

Photos from Getty as indicated; GTRESONLINE; Chris Allerton/AFP via Getty; Mark Stewart/Camera Press


17 thoughts on “Inventory: Duchess of Cambridge’s Red Hats

  1. Hat #3 has always been a favorite of mine. I thought her look at the Jubilee celebrations was outstanding. Of course I loved her entire blue look in Canada in 2016, mainly because the hat is the exact replica of my favorite. The style is very flattering on her and she wears bold colors very well. I would love to see her bring hat #3 out for another outing.

  2. I love number 3. It suits her face and goes well with her hairstyle. I am not a fan of pillbox hats, but number 4 is quite good. I like the rosette on it. It makes it less matronly.
    I am not sure if it is the position or just the hat, but number 2 does not enhance her facial features the same way #1does.

  3. Number 3 is my favourite as well! So cheerful, so flattering.
    Wild theory: perhaps HRH avoids wearing red to occasions where there will be people in red uniforms, lest she a) match or b) clash.

  4. I like all of these except number 2, and I confess I’d probably like that one better if her hair was up. My favorite is number 3, I love that shape and trim. Really a wonderful hat. Happy Birthday to the Duchess!

  5. What about the hat she wore on the barge during the Queen’s Golden Jubilee celebration? I don’t see that hat above, do I?

  6. I agree with the others so far; red is a great color for Kate, but I assume she doesn’t wear it a lot to either stand out less, or because she’s not a huge fan (although I can’t guess why). Not surprised we’ve never seen #1 repeated, but maybe it will come up in a retrospective display some day, like many of HM’s hats and outfits recently. Like JamesB, I don’t remember #2, but it has good potential (maybe a little more off to the side and different hairdo). #3 is a big favorite of mine, and would like to see this out again, like at Christmas (hint, cough, 2018, cough, hint) (the blue Canadian one also should make a comeback, but I have less hope it will since it was such a high profile hat). Somehow I don’t remember seeing the floral detailing on the pillbox previously, so this has endeared me to this hat more than before, and I would like to see it paired with another outfit, say something in grey.

  7. These are four beautiful red hats. My favorite is the third as well, for its jauntiness, size, and the way the under brim trim anchors the hat. The first two have pretty trims, and I especially like the little brims on them.

  8. She really look good in red, but as you said she might try not to wear such a distinct colour at hat wearing occations that often include the other royals. The pillbox is one of my favourite hats of hers!

  9. Red suits her but she doesn’t seem to be a huge fan. Only one of this has been repeated (number 3), which is a shame. I confess that I cannot remember number 2 at all but I like the look of it a lot. What was the outfit it was worn with?

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