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!
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.
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.
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.
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.
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).
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?
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.
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.
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.
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.
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