Hat From the Past

Royal Hats twenty-five years ago today to a visit to Hungary that saw Queen Elizabeth in a bright straw turquoise hat with mushroom brim and twisted pixie top, trimmed with a velvet hatband. This hat, designed by Marie O’Reagan, came up in conversation here a few weeks ago and is such a unique design, I thought it warranted a closer look:

Embed from Getty Images
Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images
Embed from Getty Images
Embed from Getty Images

Photos from Getty as indicated

21 thoughts on “Hat From the Past

  1. Same dress/coat, but with the original hat. HM also wore the original hat on May 28, 1993 (there is one very good photo, but not available for our consumption here) in Liverpool, in between her two outings with this post’s featured hat (May 6, 1993 Hungary trip and June 12, 1993 Ascot.)

    October 19, 1992; Bonn, Germany
    Embed from Getty Images

    Embed from Getty Images

  2. I love this hat !! I love the color I love the shape and I love the shine …. it looks like she’s comfortable in it – I have to say I went looking for tradition Hungarian designs but couldn’t find anything like it – I did get stuck down a few “rabbit holes” though 😊

  3. June 12,1993; Trooping the Colour
    Embed from Getty Images

  4. Thanks to the insights of the commenters, I can admire this, but I still don’t really like it. Like Edie Engel, I’m seeing a pith helmet.

    • Like you, I don’t really care for the hat. I even see where you get the pith helmet. However, in the close-up of just the hat, I see the top swirl of soft serve ice cream in a cone. (You have to disregard the color!)

  5. I seem to remember that this hat was modelled on a traditional Hungarian design, yet another example of HM’s diplomatic dressing.

  6. Unique. It certainly reveals evidence of the hand of an extremely gifted and imaginative milliner. It has great appeal in color and texture–if it weren’t lèse-majesté, I would long to touch it. To ask of this piece of art if it’s doing its job as a hat seems almost an impertinence. Fits perfectly; is of a particularly flattering color for the queen; the brim, though ample, does not obscure her face; and full on it looks graceful enough. But from the side, it has the unsettling air of a pith helmet with social ambitions. I love it as a wonderful conception, but not as a wearable hat.

  7. Fabulous! Millinery skill – extraordinary! Rose Cory and Marie O’Reagan- true Great Milliners and very kind teachers!
    Thank you for this post!

  8. Inventive and beautifully sculpted, you sense the hand of the skilled milliner. Also, special mention for the quality of the straw: it shines like silk!
    Thank you Sandra, for introducing the blog by hattinaround. Very interesting.

    • What a wonderful article, sandra, thanks for finding and sharing it with us!

      Hat aside, I’m finding the styling of that coat quite interesting (as shown in the Trooping photo posted by Jimbo). If anyone comes across a full length photo of HM standing in that coat, I’d love to see it.

  9. It’s quite strange, isn’t it? Having yesterday found the O’Regan polka dots from the same tour, I might try and hunt up some more of her hats to see if her style was always so ‘out there’.

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