Guest Post: Queen Margrethe’s Hats To Bring Back

Longtime reader and regular commenter Jake, who lives in Washington DC and can be found on Instgram or Twitter @bestdressedmenno, entertained us last summer with a 4-part series on royal men’s hats. In 2018, he suggested hats from the wardrobes of Queen Elizabeth and Queen Maxima he’d like to see repeated, a series he continues today with a Danish twist. Welcome back, Jake! 

Unfortunately the COVID-19 crisis has forced the cancellation of many events, including the 80th birthday celebrations of Queen Margrethe II of Denmark two weeks ago. In response to the cancellations, Margrethe also asked that no birthday flowers be sent to her, but instead sent to those facing a tough time in isolation, especially senior citizens. In a roundabout way of respecting this request, I’m sending you all “flowers” in the way of hats I would like to see Queen Margrethe repeat!

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Many of you know I’ve been critical of Margrethe’s love of matching hats and outfits, perhaps unfairly so because of my personal bias against this idea (although I praise her fearless approach to pattern and color). I will admit such matching makes putting together a whole ensemble easier and this was a trend for much of the 20th Century, but with Margrethe’s tendency to repeat outfits and hats so quickly, it sometimes feels a bit too much (don’t hate me, I enjoy variety!).

All of that said, as I delved deeper into the hat archives of Margrethe, I was reminded of some hats I’ve loved and discovered some new (to me) ones. Most of these were repeated (usually more than what I show here), so we can’t lament that, but many haven’t seen the light of day in years, and it’s beyond time they appeared again! So, without further ado, and in no particular order, here are my top 10 choices of hats Margrethe should bring back.

Hat #1: I was previously unaware of this lovely lavender wide brim in sinamay, worn for Margrethe’s 60th birthday celebrations on 16 April 2000, and repeated that June on a visit to Hanover, Germany (second photo); granted, this was worn when I was only 12 in rural Ohio and much before I was aware of the wonderful world of royal hats.

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Hat #2: Despite some clear matchy action going on, this may be my favorite hat on this list. The dark periwinkle color combined with the stripes, the slightly jaunty brim, and that fantastic feather spray all make for an amazing hat! While the stripes on the hat clearly come from Margrethe’s well-tailored suit, the fact they are used as accents on the hatband and brim binding (instead of the whole hatband) and are at a different angle from the suit make a world of difference to me. Repeated multiple times, including Prince Christian’s christening on 21 January 2006 and twice in Norway, it deserves at least one more appearance.

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Hat #3: A hat that looks to have been only repeated once was this ivory sisal wide brim from a visit to Washington, DC on 8 June 2011 (which I could’ve possibly seen had my brother’s wedding in Ohio not been the same week, argh). A perfect summer hat, I love the red and white and know it was a good outfit choice for what was certainly a warm and humid day in DC. Interestingly enough, it was repeated at the 100th annual Rebild Festival on 4 July 2012 in celebration of the US Independence Day.

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Hat #4: Another gem I was previously unaware of was this felt beauty in coral and pink worn at the christening of Prince Felix on 4 October 2002. I love a vivid color scheme, and everything about this suits Margrethe perfectly. It was later seen in May 2005, but I’m unaware of its appearance since.

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Hat #5: Here’s another example where the matchiness is toned down by a strategic and restrained use of the outfit’s fabric. Worn during Lithuania’s millennium celebrations on 6 July 2009, it was repeated on a visit to Dresden, Germany on 23 August 2009; interestingly, the upturned part of the brim appears to have been pulled down a bit in Dresden. I would love to see this on her annual summer cruise; this outfit was later paired with a wide brim picture hat in navy sinamay straw (which I believe is this hat retrimmed).

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Hat #6: Looking at the hats Margrethe has worn, she favors blues, reds, and purples. To help break this up, of course this hat had to make the list! This green sinamay beauty may be over 20 years old and was last seen in 2007, but it has aged much better than many hats made around the same time. And after all the craziness we’ve already had in 2020, we deserve something as festive and happy as this hat, don’t we?

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Hat #7: One hat I had forgotten about and then rediscovered was this very wide brim portrait hat from Princess Estelle of Sweden’s christening on 22 May 2012. Margrethe has worn a couple other hats with this lattice straw design, but none as large or perhaps fabulous.  

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Hat #8: I really love the wine color of this hat, the simple shape flatters Margrethe, and the netting trim keeps it interesting. Unfortunately it was difficult to find good photos of this hat, despite being worn at the opening of Parliament in 2007 (also worn in 2000 and perhaps other times). Not the most exciting hat, but one that can be easily worn to many different events. It certainly deserves a good photo.

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Hat #9: While Margrethe has worn a lot of blue hats, this one stood out for its beautiful cobalt color, especially with it being a brimmed hat (most of her brighter blue hats have been variants of pillboxes or cocktails). The small roses and loops trim give it an elegant touch without being overwhelming, allowing this hat to perform as a working hat or be appropriate for a dressier event. While worn multiple times since it premiered in 2013, this hat was unfortunately last seen in October 2015 during a visit to Indonesia.

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Hat #10: Finally, you know I couldn’t forget this one! A favorite of mine for Margrethe, I didn’t realize this actually debuted on a visit to Thailand on 7 February 2001. Perfect for Ascot in 2002, it’s most famous outing (and my first introduction to it way back when I was in high school) was the wedding of Felipe and Letizia in Madrid, Spain in 2004. Despite its age, it feels quite timeless to me. This is another hat that I think would be delightful to bring back to help cheer us up in 2020.

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Being less familiar with Queen Margrethe’s hats before exploring this topic, I have since come to appreciate a lot of gems from her hat past!  Unfortunately, we won’t know what hats we missed for her 80th birthday; perhaps Margrethe should celebrate her half birthday to make up for it? What do you think? Which hats would you like to see Queen Margrethe bring out of her closet?

What do you think, dear readers- which of Queen Margrethe’s would you like to see again? Thanks, Jake, for bringing these ten hats back for us to admire again!

Photos from Getty as indicated

34 thoughts on “Guest Post: Queen Margrethe’s Hats To Bring Back

  1. I am a bit late in joining this discussion, but wanted to say Thank you Jake, for this beautiful top ten of Danish hats!
    Queen Margarethe seems to favour rather classic shapes, but which suit her perfectly, and she has a dashing sense of colour!

    • I will admit the shapes of most of these hats are quite similar, but mostly because any of the smaller or different shaped hats I wanted to feature had been worn many times and/or pretty recently. But you are quite right that these classic shapes suit Margrethe very well, and she isn’t afraid to play with colors either! I certainly became more of a Margrethe fan through this journey into her hatboxes.

  2. P.S. One hat I really wanted to include on the list was this one, but this is the only photo I could find of it, and it doesn’t give me a fair assessment of what it really looks like unfortunately:
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  3. Jake, great post of Queen Margrethe’s hats! I would like to see a return of any of them, but especially the royal blue/white hat, #9. It speaks to me in a beautiful, elegant way, and besides, blue is my favorite color.

    • I’m so glad I chose one that greatly appeals to you Jimbo! The colors on #9 are certainly vibrant and stunning, one of the reasons I included it here. Grateful we can support each other’s favorite colors! 😉

  4. Lovely post and excellent choice of hats. Each one is different and unique. It’s a hard choice, but I would say #10 is my favorite because of the double brim. It is different and refreshing. I had done the double brim back in 2006 and after seeing this, am realizing that I need to make them again. I love #8 because it is a very wearable hat, meaning something that is elegant but could be worn with most anything. The shape is quit nice and the wine color is classic. Tied with #8 is #2. Periwinkle is such a lovely color on her, along with the jaunty brim and fabric edging. If I were choosing any of her hats for myself, I would pick this one. QM is regal and really can pull off most any style in my opinion.

    • Thank you Polly! I certainly go for the hats that are often a bit more dramatic on these lists, but of course can’t resist including a couple of simple ones (like #8) because the whole look is just done so well. Regal and jaunty, especially with those pinstripes, are the reasons why #2 is a favorite of this list.

    • I’m certainly grateful her artistic side is a true influence on what she wears, and she doesn’t depend on others to tell her what to wear (or at least that what it seems like). I don’t always agree with the final results, but Margrethe’s clothes are never dull and I love that about her.

  5. Thank you Jake! What a fine display of hats you shared with us!! I wasn’t familiar with any of these hats except the wide brimmed green hat with pink curlicues. I love the coral and pink the best. The whole outfit was fantastic with the splits in the sleeves and length of the coat and the high ruffly collar. It sounds like a lot going on in one outfit but it worked!

    • I agree k2classroom, it seems like a lot is going on with that coral and pink ensemble, but it all so harmonious at the same time! This is Margrethe at some of her finest IMO.

  6. #6 – oh my. if one is going to wear giant cabbage roses across the bosom, a shapely statement hat is the only way to accessorize! This is both playful and festive.
    #10 – love this coral color on QM, and the width of the brim sets off the flowy lines of the dress.
    #8 – smashing, dashing, terrific look with the burgundy suit.

    I hope the Queen spots this and favors some wide brims instead of those little pork pie shapes.

    • If any royals are reading this and take our suggestions, I would faint! Although, Máxima did wear a couple of hats I thought she bring back not too long after that list, so maybe someone connected is reading. 😀

  7. Thanks, Jake! What fabulous choices, many of them new to me! QM is so tall and regal that the wide brims suit her beautifully. And these are such good examples of the finishing complementing the look without going into “matchy.”

    We’ve recently admired the twist on #6, which contributes to the exuberance of the ensemble. #7 has a wonderfully light feel. I love cobalt blue, so #9 definitely appeals. Is that underbrim pale pink, or is it a trick of the light?

    A more recent favorite: It’s not as dramatic as these, but a great shape and color combo that ties in so well with the color-blocked ensemble.

  8. agreed, QM really does suit a large brim. personally, i love both of the coral and pink hats/outfits on her – really warming to her complexion, so would love to see her in these again. and for sheer fabulousness i think she should bring out the green and pink again. perhaps we should petition for a huge international royal presence (and major hat-fest) at ascot 2021!
    great post jake, thanks!

    • Glad you enjoyed the selection sirlancelot! A huge hatted gathering of international royals certainly would be a dream come true! Elizabeth II’s 95th birthday is next year; perhaps that could be taken advantage of? (of course, that could become a nightmare for HatQueen to keep up with haha)

  9. Thank you for the great post Jake. I wouldn’t mind seeing any or all of them again. I particularly like the lavender, the pink/coral and the green. QMII looks great in large brim hats. To go the the other end of the spectrum, I could gladly go the rest of my days without seeing the blue hat that is known as the “Teletubby hat”.

    • Thank you Sue! I will agree the infamous “Teletubby” hat is not a favorite of mine, but there are a couple others I dislike even more.

  10. She certainly wears larger brims and colour well, doesn’t she? But in spite of this, my favourite of this interesting collection is the dark houndstooth-trim hat from the 2009 Lithuania trip. It seems the ideal size and shape to balance the outfit. I love this look on her.

    • Yes, this smaller and more sedate looks is quite fabulous on Margrethe. There were many hats I wished I could list here, so narrowing it down to just 10 was a bit difficult, and I wanted to feature ones that weren’t worn very often (some other favorites had been repeated many, many times over the years).

  11. All gorgeous hats Jake, I miss them all. I love to see Margrethe in a wider brimmed hat. The apricot/peach felt #4 is new to me, and a standout for the way it tones with her complexion.

    • You’re right mcncln, this color scheme is great for Margrethe’s complexion. I know I originally said Hat #2 was probably my favorite of this list, but now I think #4 has edged it out; granted, #4 stands out with it’s unusual and fabulous colors, so one couldn’t repeat it as often unfortunately haha.

  12. Thanks for showing these lovely hats! It seems QM wears fewer wide brimmed hats nowadays, and it’s a shame, as some of these were beauties! I really love the last one, the lattice straw and the green and pink!

    • I agree trickymum, there do seem to be fewer wider brims for Margrethe (and Elizabeth II) than 10-20 years ago. Don’t know if that’s a trend, personal preference, allowing more visibility in a more image-focused world, or what. I’m grateful we still get a lot of good hats at least!

    • Thank you hats off! Yes, you’ve described what I usually look for so perfectly and concisely! It’s often hard to detail what I’m talking about in just a comment (especially when one can’t point to things haha), but I’m trying to do better.

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