Ascot Hat From the Past

Royal Hatsto June 16, 1954, sixty-five years ago, when a young Queen Elizabeth appeared at Ascot in a saucer hat with fluted-edge crin brim and velvet crown. The star shape on the crown is a unique feature that sets it apart from all others- can you think of any other star shaped royal millinery?!

Embed from Getty Images

This hat ends this look back at past Ascot hats- I’ll be back tomorrow. If there are any other royal hats worn today, please share them in the comments below.

Photo from Getty as indicated

28 thoughts on “Ascot Hat From the Past

  1. Since this is the last one, I will take this opportunity to thank you, HatQueen, for this excellent tour of Ascot hats of the past – it has been so much fun!

    • It has been fun! But we have been like children HatQueen, amusing ourselves in your (relative) absence, without doing much work. There has been some fruitful archive digging and Maja has spotted some hat wearing royals, but I am sure we missed quite a lot of wat’s been going on on royal heads these past two weeks.
      Time for you to come back!

  2. At first sight I thought this hat was overly whimsical; but with more views, it has really grown on me. HM wore this hat again a fortnight later.
    Embed from Getty Images
    The Norman Hartnell moire coat looks amazing; how I would love to have known the colour!
    Do you recognise Princess Margaret in this pic? her frilly cap is so different to what I would expect!


    See HM at 1:03 and multiple times thereafter: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DsMZG6ASdo0

    • Fascinating clip, mcncln! The royal barge, Kents and Gloucesters, curtesying and handkissing — quite a welcome. I agree with you about the hat. The star motif makes it a bit of a novelty, but it’s more subtle than it appears in the Ascot photo. (I admit that I still like Glitter Girl’s and Jimbo’s inflatable hat theories, though.)

    • OMG! The Queen in open toe pumps! Not surprising to see Princess Margaret with her toes on display, but I can’t remember ever seeing QE’s toes!

      • You’re right Virginia, well spotted! I don’t know how I didn’t notice this, especially as the event was a state visit. Now that I think about it I do recall seeing many pics of HM on tour in 1954 wearing open-toed shoes (though the “on tour” daytime dress code seems to be bit more informal).
        Of course, the open-toed shoe may have developed from the much smaller “peep toe” shoe which was everywhere during the forties – worn with hosiery, of course. There are lots of pics from that era of the then Princess Elizabeth (and her sister and mother) wearing peeptoes.

  3. HQ, thanks for two weeks of great Royal Ascot fun. I found what Dd referred to – a Simone Mirman creation, but photos of HM actually wearing it are rare. I’ll look further today when time permits.
    Embed from Getty Images

    • It is almost as if the first hat was a deflated version of this one! Perhaps the red loop is some kind of handle that blows it up like life jackets you see on an aeroplane? (And no, I am not serious….)

        • I think the more recent hat actually looks better on HM’s head in the link Jimbo posted than it does in the above photo of the hat alone sitting on a table. Tilted to the side like that, with the red edging showing assymetrically next to her face, with the star somewhat in the back, not so bad for its time… although who knows what we might think if there were other photos of The Queen in the hat shown from different angles!

          Regarding the original hat in this post, I’m not a milliner, but I have worked with tulle, and I agree with Wies that the brim might be tulle rather than crin. There’s something about the way it looks at the folds. On the whole, a very strange looking hat!

  4. This is a fab hat. And in a very rare move is that not one of the brooches from the Nizam tiara in that hat? That’s a Queen Mary move I don’t think I’ve ever seen her do again.

  5. Did you not feature a star shaped beanie she wore earlier this year in Morocco.


    Also check this out. Who are in the carriages here?

    • That is a fabulous video! Thanks so much for sharing! How fun would it be to see some of those hats worn on current generations? The huge purple hat and black hat with floral detail on the top (back?) worn by two very chic racegoers certainly caught my eye.

      And thank you so much Hat Queen for this tremendous retrospective! That was a lot of work to entertain us while you were (hopefully) relaxing and catching up on some much needed you time.

    • Wonderful video! Loved seeing Bing Crosby at the very end although it looks like he lost his bet! Agree with others regarding the diamond brooch on Her Majesty’s hat. Very Queen Mary and a habit I wish she’d resume especially with some of her smaller floral pins.

    • The Queen and the Duke; the Queen Mum and Princess Margaret; Marina Duchess of Kent and Princess Alexandra, all facing forward, but I don’t recognise the rear facing gents.

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