Queen Elizabeth Visits Windsor Elder Program

Queen Elizabeth visited the King George VI Day Centre in Windsor this morning to celebrate the elder care program’s 60th anniversary. For this visit, she repeated her ‘split crown’ style hat in deep purple felt.

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We didn’t catch a good look at all sides of this hat when it debuted in February and today’s photos show a gentle side upsweep on the kettle brim, a felt bow and trio of pompoms, two in purple and one in black. The colour is what works best for this hat- it’s beautiful on Her Majesty- as does the wonderful contrasting textures between the wool coat, silk dress, felt hat and pompom trim. From there, however, things fall apart. The crown and brim shapes on the hat feel overworked and clunky and the awkward neckline of the coat gives an off-balance note of distraction in nearly every shot. While a small, crisp collar on the coat would help the ensemble’s overall look, it wouldn’t change the ponderous feel of the hat.

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Designer: Angela Kelly
Previously Worn: February 2, 2018
What do you think of this hat now that we’ve seen a better view of it?
Photos from Getty as indicated

22 thoughts on “Queen Elizabeth Visits Windsor Elder Program

  1. Terribly “mumsy”, isn’t it? The pompoms are just AWFUL – like the things girls used to make in primary school, using up odd bits of wool!

  2. I like the shape of the hat. The brim and crown are intriguing.
    It’s too bad the that the color of the hat sometimes seems so different from the color of the coat. Is it supposed to match or to contrast?

  3. Actually, I like this hat. I’ve never minded the split crown design, and this is a wonderful colour. The pom poms are not sophisticated, but they are fun. It does make me realise how difficult it is to match colours in different fabrics, though. Certainly on my monitor, the pom pom colour always matches the coat, but the hat itself sometimes looks rather bluer than the coat, and at other times a good match. (And even when it looks bluer, it isn’t as blue as the buttons, so that is a distracting element.)

    I’m not sure that the fit issue is so much posture-related as it is to do with the design – the room in the coat across the shoulders and the cut around the neck. Although the gap / dress peaking is usually on the left side (looking at HM), it sometimes shifts to the right side, so it seems not quite consistent enough to be completely a posture issue.

  4. I like this hat much more than I did now that I’ve seen much more of it. The color is still absolutely gorgeous, the fabric (presumably velour felt) is great, and the addition of this brooch elevates the ensemble to the next level.

    That said, there are still problems with it for me. The split crown doesn’t bother me, and I’ve grown to like the upturned brim, but the fact the brim is asymmetrical, and that that the longer side is more upturned, makes it look more unbalanced than it should be. Also, I will never be a fan of the pom-poms, and the black one is an odd choice to throw in there. And I agree a different collar would be more flattering, but no matter how hard one tries, sometimes one’s clothes can always be just a bit off unfortunately (I say that with experience and weird body proportions haha).

  5. I love the colour. I loath those hats with the split crown. HM has been wearing them for a while now and I think the shape has overstayed its’ welcome. The heavy felt hats seem to overwhelm her these days. However I was distracted with the fit of that coat – it does not fit across the shoulders and is pulling every which way, revealing the dress beneath. More recent successes have had a V neck collar coat over the round neck dress – a combination which seems to fit HM so much better. Sadly I think Angela Kelly is well stuck in a rut of sameness.

  6. I really like it! I’ve never minded the split crowns as much as others and I think the brim makes a nice shape plus the pom-poms are fun. The neck is a bit out I agree, but I wonder if that’s more due to HM’s posture as she is older than the seamstress.

    • JamesB, HM will be 92 next Saturday – let’s hope she is older than the seamstress. HA, I had to read your last sentence twice before I caught what you were saying! (It’s been a long week, my friend.) As for the pom-poms, I think the following hat was much more successful with said adornment, and the collar gives a more finished look. The second picture’s collar is nicer yet – more refined and less bulky, I think. A lot of purple lately! Happy weekend to you all.

      March 3, 2017 (repeated January 14, 2018)
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      March 6, 2018
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      • Hahaha! Yes – I realised how you misread my sentence! I’m sure she is older than the seamstress!! The coat is by Karl Ludwig and his designs are normally very well cut. I agree a collar does sit a bit smarter, still like it though.

  7. Gorgeous shade of purple. Actually the awful hat is almost not noticeable to me because I can’t tear my eyes off the poorly cut neck of the coat which pulls this way and that revealing various views of her dress. It’s just this side of having your bra strap showing.

  8. It’s nice to see this ensemble again – the hat and coat team very well together for a great overall effect.
    HQ I do agree about the heavy feel of this hat, and not just because I’m not a fan of split crowns. This seems to be the only one of HM’s split crown hats where the trim is in the centre, and I don’t feel that the weighty asymmetry of crown and brim on her left is getting enough balance from this placement. I would move the trim to her right and add more to it
    I read somewhere that HM’s pompoms and other less formal hat trims are chosen by the wardrobe team for informal public appearances (if any public appearances by HM can ever truly be described as “informal” LOL!) – as I recall, for walkabouts, and especially meeting children, the sick, and the disadvantaged. Apparently children like the pompoms, which can provide a talking point. As we almost never see HM wear any hats these days that are dramatically different (fluoro green colour aside!), I quite like how the pompoms bring a touch of play to her uniform.
    Re the coat: the reason that it is not sitting straight on HM and sliding off to one side, is that it has been cut too wide across the shoulders. It’s a mystery to me how an item for HM could be made with such an obvious fit issue. Could the wardrobe team not have adjusted their dress-making model to keep up to speed with HM’s physical changes? (such as a slight dropping of one shoulder, which can happen in the elderly as a consequence of, say, a knee or hip problem). Perhaps HM’s outfits are made quite a long time in advance – 6 months, even 12 months ahead of their first wearing? (and therefore may not reflect more recent physical changes?) does anyone know?

    • The shoulders are the correct width across the bodice, but I do agree that one shoulder is higher than the other and her other shoulder might be pitched forward a bit too. The fix during construction is to fold a small pleat into the paper pattern piece at the the neckline edge. The pleat would be small (less than 1/2 inch) and it would taper to nothing at the armhole, Then the neckline curve is re-trued. That will make the collar edge smaller and will remove the gap you see on her right side. I do think her garments are made well in advance because all of her engagement clothes are custom made with haute couture techniques so I’m surprised to see this fitting error.

      • Thanks very much Phyllis for outlining how a fit problem like this is addressed at the pattern stage. I did a little dressmaking at school, but not enough to understand how to customise a pattern. It’s fascinating to have someone with expertise like yourself shedding light on this subject.

        • You’re very welcome! I’m flattered you were interested in the explanation, it’s a good eye that you have to notice the fitting error ^_^ …fit is so much more important than trend in fashion.

  9. I quite like it, though the trim seems to be rather front-heavy. The colour is certainly a good one on HM.
    The two purple and one black pompom arrangement reminds me of the fictional “gentlewoman detective” Miss Silver, whose hats are frequently trimmed in those exact colours (even sometimes in pompoms) – though her hats themselves are invariably black.

  10. I love this hat even more the 2nd time around – especially the wonderful color, but why the black pom-pom? HQ, I agree with the coat collar/fit, etc. I read somewhere that HM’s coats have either 3 or 5 buttons, not an even number, such as 4. I guess all rules can be broken occasionally.

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