Seeing Triple: Queen Elizabeth

Royal HatsWhen Queen Elizabeth met with King Harald of Norway to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Anglo-Norse Society earlier this month, she gave us a better glimpse of one of the hats she wore for the first time over the late summer in Scotland. Immediately, many of us recognized it off the same block that Rachel Trevor Morgan used for this familiar turquoise hat:

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It’s interesting- while the two designs are clearly very similar (notice that subtle diagonal indent near the top of the crown and the nearly identical brim shape), these side-by-side views highlight some differences. For a start, the domed crown on the raspberry version is visibly higher while the upswept brim on the turquoise version looks slightly longer. The fabric overlay on the turquoise hat requires a seam around the top of the crown that changes the look of the hat- something unavoidable when using fabric on millinery but that leaves such a different look than the smoothly formed felt on the raspberry hat.

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Until seeing these hats side-by-side here, I did not realize that they both are trimmed with fabric embellishments- felt on the raspberry hat and crushed velvet on the turquoise one- a touch that links them in an interesting way, particularly when we see few royal hats trimmed only with fabric embellishments.

UPDATE: A third hat in this same style, this one in deep green, was added on October 2, 2021 for the opening of Scottish parliament. 

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I adore how Rachel Trevor Morgan used these subtle differences of shape (not to mention the very different colours!) to create distinct hats that, while coming off the same block, stand firmly on their own.

Photos from Getty as indicated

9 thoughts on “Seeing Triple: Queen Elizabeth

  1. As Jimbo pointed out this RTM shape with the asymmetric brim is a common shape, though these two are the twinniest of course. I like them both very much, such strong colours and resisting the urge to add another colour was wise.

    My only quibble which I’ve stated before is the imbalance of the brims each side. I wish the downward side were slightly wider, but I suspect that’s due to HM’s preference, she tends to have wider brims shortened which is a shame.

  2. I am also a big RTM fan. I also would like to see the hourglass shape discarded. I don’t find it flattering for Her Majesty. She is a petite woman and this taller shape doesn’t work for her (in my opinion, only….) Hat Queen, can you tell me if it is usual for milliners to supply matching hat pins for their creations? I say this because it looks to me as if the raspberry hat has a matching pin.

    • Many (most?) of the Queen’s hats have matching hat pins. Sometimes you can see them better than others…
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      • HatQueen, you are amazing, coming up with 15 examples so quickly! HM’s pins blend in perfectly, where some of Queen Max’s hat pins can be lethal! The 3rd and 4th in the first set seem to be the same hat block as the 1st in the 3rd set, correct? I like it a lot – very simple and non-fussy.

  3. I love these ‘softer’ shapes on Her Majesty – but then I love RTM hats. But I do think these shapes are more flattering than the very hard lines of some of the Angela Kelly designs.

  4. The larger brim on this Ascot hat seems more balanced to me, perhaps because of the more complex trim. What a magnificent color on HM.

    June 21, 2018
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  5. I love both the Pink and the Turquoise, and a big part of the reason is because I love that they both had fabric only trim. I think it’s why I care less for the green (though the bright green is super fun). I actually really like this shape- both the crown and the brim have some interest without being crazy mad hatter (which is how I feel about the hourglass shaped ones).

  6. Hat Queen, is it safe to assume that we are invited to add more to your post today? This could be a lot of fun!

    June 11, 2016: Trooping the Colour
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    June 14, 2018
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