Kent Wedding at Windsor: British Royal Cousins

After admiring the hats and headpieces worn by the bridal party and Kent family relations at Saturday’s wedding of Lady Gabriella Windsor and Thomas Kingston, we turn now to the bride’s British royal cousins. We begin with the family’s matriarch, Queen Elizabeth, who repeated the lovely cerise straw hat we first saw her wear at Ascot last year. With a gently molded stepped crown, sidesweeping brim and double straw hatband, the focus of this design is its vibrantly beautiful posy of handmade silk flowers on the side, studded with arrow trimmed feathers.

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It’s a lovely look for Her Majesty with the contrasting textures between straw hat and tweedy coat giving some dimension to the ensemble. While the hat’s balance and shape are beautiful on their own, it’s those incredible silk flowers and the colour used on their inner petals that magnetically draws pulls the eye in for a second look that makes this design a standout star.

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Designer: Rachel Trevor Morgan
Previously Worn: June 21, 2018

Princess Anne repeated a hat in finely woven navy straw. In a variation of a cloche shape, the design’s short brim is upturned on one side in an angle echoed by a slight diagonal pitch on the crown. The interesting shape is somewhat lost against the hat’s trim, a wide yellow hatband with navy stripes and large side flower, both in the same fabric as the ensemble’s coordinating jacket.

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Coordinated is a good descriptor for this look but thankfully, those strips on the hat’s hatband keep it from the dreaded “matchy” label. No, it’s not currently fashionable but it makes a graphic statement and the interaction between hat and jacket is balanced. It’s a strong look that Anne carries well, despite looking slightly out of place in this decade.

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Designer: unknown
Previously Worn: September 20, 2011; August 12, 2010; June 17, 2009; April 8, 2007 and likely others

Princess Beatrice topped a navy lace dress with a white straw button percher hat, lavishly trimmed with straw loops, silk organza pointed leaves and layered silk flowers. The hat is lovely but I thought its pairing with this lace dress was incongruous in both colour and feel. The pieces are both exquisite and I’d love to see them both on Beatrice again, paired with alternate elements (imagine this hat with a floral frock? So pretty.).

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Designer: bespoke Jess Collett. Self-Portrait dress.
Previously Worn: This hat is new

Lady Sarah Chatto wore an oversize cloche hat in ecru straw hat with rounded crown and extended brim. Sarah is an expert in elegant neutrals and this hat, with white sweater set and taupe silk pleated skirt, is a case in point. I initially thought this was a new addition (I’m SO ready to see her add different shapes to her millinery wardrobe) than the saucers she has favored for the past few years) but you eagle eyed readers remembered it’s nearly 20 years old- a case for sticking to classic shapes because it’s certainly aged well. Interestingly, the brim on this design is flexible, as shown by the different positions Lady Sarah has worn it in the past.

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Designer: likely Stephen Jones
Previously Worn: June 18, 2012; June 15, 2006; June 4, 2002; June 10, 2001; July 11, 2000

The biggest millinery surprise of the event was on the Duchess of Gloucester, who brought back a headpiece last seen in the early 1980s.  In royal blue textured straw braided into a wide headband, the design nearly defies its age thanks to its wonderful colour, which pairs fantastically with Brigitte’s silk dress. Yes, it’s a dated and slightly bonkers look but one that is brilliantly brave and for this, deserves both giggles and admiration.

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Designer: unknown
Previously Worn: June 16, 1984

The Duchess’ daughter-in-law, the Countess of Ulster, wore a  beret percher covered in black crepe, trimmed with a dramatic sweep of pleated crin trim

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Designer: Bundle MacLaren. It is a bespoke version of the Leah design. Dress from Cefinn
Previously Worn: This hat is new

Lady Rose Gilman paired her turquoise dress with a red straw button percher trimmed with a crescent of red goose feathers anchored with a jeweled bow.

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Designer: unknown. Dress by L.K.Bennett
Previously Worn: uncertain

Sarah, Duchess of York, wore one of my favourite hats of the day, a triple layered saucer in dusky pink straw with lovely upsweep around the back and a trimming of pheasant feathers. Everything about this hat is spot-on (from scale to colour to unexpected feather trim (which links so well with Sarah’s signature auburn hair) to that beautiful sweeping curve) and the combination of hat and dress is spectacularly elegant.

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Designer: Jess Collett
Previously Worn: This hat is new. Dress by Jad Ghandour

I know some of you have been waiting two days to discuss these hats so let’s jump to it- which designs here stood out most to you?

Photos from Getty as indicated; Tim Rooke/Shutterstock 

21 thoughts on “Kent Wedding at Windsor: British Royal Cousins

  1. HM: Lovely as always – it’s amazing this vibrant colour works so well on her. She really can wear any colour, can’t she?
    Anne: Tidy and unfussy (and recycled). That’s our gal! She so suits the Edwardian hat vibe I wish she’d extend it to her clothing style.
    Beatrice: Love the hat, less happy with the top of the dress. I don’t care for the ‘bandage’ look. Still, she looks sleek and appropriate.
    Sarah C: Very nice, elegant and ever-so-slightly ho-hum. ‘Normal’ for her, in other words.
    Birgitte: Great dress, smashing jewels … I don’t think I have words for the outsize headband, but maybe she’s seen that ‘headbands’ are hot – Kate’s kokoshniks, Maxima’s bandeaux, etc – and thought “I’ve got one of those somewhere” …
    Claire Ulster: Very presentable. The hat may not be the right colour for a spring wedding but it goes well with her dress and has a nice airy feel about it.
    Lady Rose: Clever work here … I think. Can’t see any red in her dress and wonder why she doesn’t have a red clutch. The hat is nice, though, and it’s always a bonus to have a jewel added.
    Sarah F: Great hat. A wowzer hat, in fact; and that brooch is lovely too. The colour is good on her, but boy do I dislike the fit of that dress. A different, kinder fabric and she would have aced it.

    • Sandra, that’s exactly what I thought about the Duchess of Gloucester! Maybe she is also influenced by the doughnut styles we see on Queens Maxima and Mathilde.

      I’m also in full agreement about the Ulster hat and the Duchess of York. Thanks for typing my thoughts for me.

  2. At this hat’s premiere, I wasn’t so keen on the colors in the rose trim, but either time and/or the lighting has converted me, and HM was definitely one of the best dressed.

    Anne looked good overall, but compared to the outfits of many other guests, her ensemble seemed a bit heavy for mid-May.

    Not my favorite hat for Beatrice (I thought it was a Juliette Botterill at first), but it’s still a great choice for her, and I LOVED the styled ponytail; this should be tried out more often. The dress was a bit odd, but I really liked the airy sleeves.

    A fine look for Lady Sarah, but compared to her last few wedding outings, this falls flat unfortunately.

    As for Birgitte, the moment I saw this large circlet headpiece, I couldn’t believe it! I know it’s 1984 appearance was discussed in the comments on a post in the last year or so, but I’m surprised it still exists! Positively, colorwise it does go well with her dress, and her hair is much better this time (no 1980s workout headband look here), but I’m beyond sad this hat wasn’t brought back:

    I loved Claire’s green dress; it’s a beautiful emerald shade that suits her perfectly. But unfortunately I’m not such a fan of this hat; I don’t think the crinoline veiling is so flattering.

    Lady Rose was a delightful surprise, and I absolutely love this cocktail hat and color scheme for her; my only (very tiny) complaint is I wish the had was pushed back ever so slightly so it didn’t sit on her eyebrow. Still, one of my favorites of the day!

    Sarah Ferguson was another favorite of the day! Such a beautiful and flattering hat, especially with those pheasant feathers.

    • Or, if Birgitte wanted to go all blue, I would’ve loved to see this boater make a comeback, just like she did with that gorgeous emerald green one from Ascot 2018:
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  3. The Queen´s hat is simply beautiful. I suppose the Duchess of Glouchester accidentially sat on her hat just before departure and remembered this old thing in the attic in the last minute. Sarah, Duchess of York´s hat is lovely and suits her perfectly. However, when a hat is worn an updo is required. Princess Anne wins the “most dated look” competition, and Princess Beatrice´s hat is lovely, but the dress is all kinds of wrong.

    • I’m going to stop this ‘protocol’ nonsense right now. These days, an updo is absolutely NOT “required” to wear a hat. Looking back at photos of Princess Anne in the late 1960s and early 70s, it was clearly not “required” then, either.

  4. I did a double take when I saw the stylish woman in the pink hat and ensemble. Could that really be Sarah, Duchess of York? YES indeed it was and I couldn’t be happier.
    I have been waiting 3 decades for this moment – that is, the moment of seeing the duchess in a hat which truly flatters her facial features. I once searched online for every hat she had ever worn, and found only one (from the eighties) whose lines worked well with her face. And sadly it was not particularly inspired or interesting.
    The rest of Sarah’s hats mostly feature straight geometric lines that are too angular for her face, or unflattering cool dark colours, or both. But this powder pink hat has swooping curves which harmonise with her face shape, and the light colour is nowhere near as cool (i.e. hard/harsh) as what she usually wears. And while the dress is admittedly over-tight, the curving shapes of the dress trim are exactly right for Sarah.
    So although there are some other wonderful hats among the guests well worthy of praise — this one made my day.

  5. Lady Sarah CHATTO ne porte t-elle pas le même chapeau ?

    WINDSOR, UNITED KINGDOM – JUNE 10: Lady Sarah Chatto Talking To Visountess Serena Linley As They Arrive At St George’s Chapel For A Service To Mark The 80th Birthday Of Prince Philip. (Photo by Tim Graham/Getty Images)

  6. I get dizzy looking at the center of those pink flowers on the Queen’s hat (optical illusion!) but I agree, this is a great hat. She looks so good in bright colors.

    Fergie knocked it out of the park. WOWZA does she look fabulous in that hat and dress. It’s a dynamo combination that’s so elegant (not a word I think of when I think of her fashion).

    When I first saw the Duchess of Gloucester’s headband I wondered what she was thinking but then I saw the older picture and heck, she’s made it look way better than when she wore it in the 1980s so I’ve got to give her props. In the contest for best 80s hat, she nudges out Princess Anne by a hair.

  7. I can not believe Birgitte brought that 80s rocker headband thing back! I had to do a double-take!

    This is a first for me with regards to her fashionbut I absolutely love Sarah, Duchess of York’s hat. I love the colour scheme and stunning flowers on The Queen’s hat too.

  8. Sarah Ferguson was my best dressed at this wedding (apart from the gorgeous bride). The dress was lovely on her and that hat is perfection. I love the subtle details that stand out the more I view the photos. She looked so elegant. I kind of wish she wore this outfit as mother of the bride at Princess Eugenie’s wedding (although the color wouldn’t have gone with the autumnal theme).

    HM The Queen’s hat is so lovely. I love the different colors in the floral embellishment. It’s adds dimension and interest. She was beaming at this wedding and she looked very elegant. Her entire ensemble was a standout.

    I love Brigitte’s dress, but I’m not a fan of the headband, although it matches perfectly! The color is sublime.

    I might be the only one who really liked Princess Beatrice’s dress. Her hat is lovely, but I agree that they don’t go well together. Beautiful on their own.

    Sarah Chatto looked lovely. Her skirt is so pretty and that hat shape is lovely on her.

  9. HM’s bring pink is a winner, you’re right it’s the flowers with their fabric that really nail it. I’ve not much to say about Anne’s outfit, l’m sure someone will find a pic of it from 1988 soon. Sarah Chatti has got her festive twinset down to a fine art now.

    My favourite is Brigitte, that headband is bonkers, but it’s a great match for the shirt dress and she pulls it off! Closely followed by Fergie, this is a stunning outfit, she looks amazing!

  10. Sarah Ferguson looks brilliant, better all the time and so happy and content, as do the Queen, Anne, Philip. So mice to see them enjoying a family event

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