Monaco Royal Wedding: Guests from Non-Reigning Royal Houses

We wrap up our week-long look at the hats worn to Prince Albert and Princess Charlene’s religious wedding on July 2, 2011 with those worn by guests from non-reigning royal houses.

Empress Farah wore a pleated turban in the same lime green silk as her jacket and dress that tied at the back in a bow. It was a very coordinated look with subtle contrast provided by the use of both matte and shiny sides of the fabric twisted together and narrow fringe on the bottom of the back bow’s tie.

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Princess Marina of Savoy wore a picture hat in layered navy and black straw, sharply raised on one side and simply trimmed with a slim black straw hatband. The layered straw gives an interesting effect, merging the two colours surprisingly well, especially with the top layer of the straw brim cut shorter than the bottom navy layer to give some lightness to the design around the outer brim’s edge. On its own the hat was great. It’s the pairing with this feather-hemmed, bedazzled, cocktail-all-the-way dress that gives me issue. It’s a dress that simply doesn’t suit a hat.

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Marina’s daughter-in-law, Princess Clotilde, paired her ruffle trimmed scarlet dress with an oversize flower headpiece in black silk. While the black accessories work with the dress, I’d have preferred a sleeker percher hat to provide a more streamlined counterpoint for the statement dress.

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Princess Camilla of Bourbon-Two Sicilies is well known for her dramatic sartorial choices and attended this event in the ultimate (most literal? cheesiest?) symbol of love. Her large heart-shaped hat was covered in the same pink silk as her outfit, emphasized with the same magenta handpainted ombre effect as on the collar of her jacket. Well known to be one of Prince Albert’s closest friends, I always wondered if Camilla’s pink statement of love was directed at the unfortunate rumours that plagued the run up to this event… or if this was always her plan. My guess is the latter. Either way, it was quite a hat.

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Maria Margarita de Bourbon, Duchess of Anjou, paired her beautifully embellished grey dress with a statement hat in slightly lighter grey straw. The design was lavishly trimmed with grey silk oversize roses and crystal studded cut feathers placed below the brim of the saucer’s raised side.

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Princess Micaëla of Orleans wore a warm tan-hued raffia sun hat with wide, pleated brim from the Madagascar Hat Company. A twisted sash hatband in the same magenta silk as her skirt was added to the hat, presumably to link the ensemble together.

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The Duchess of Bragança paired her pale blue silk suit with a simple ecru straw hat with flat crown and upturned kettle brim.

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Crown Princess Margarita of Romania was a sunny vision in yellow with wide brimmed hat. The design, by Romanian milliner Kristina Dragomir, featured a shallow, flat crown and gently downcurved brim and was trimmed with a yellow silk hatband and swath of dotted veil wrapped around the crown and tied in a bow across the back. I’m not always a fan of one-colour looks but this shade of yellow is so happy and well suited to Margarita (and successfully grounded by the cream accessories and pearl jewellery) that I can’t help but like it.

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Crown Princess Katherine of Serbia paired her ice blue silk beaded dress and jacket with a feminine headpiece of large white and blue ombre flower petal ruffles trimmed with loops of blue tube crin. I can see how the headpiece linked with her ensemble and I love the unconventional design but I think a less fussy piece (anything that didn’t look like layered cabbage leaves) would have been a better option.

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Grand Duchess Maria Vladimirovna of Russia wore a tall, peaked Kokoshnik-style headpiece in the same floral silk as her dress. Maria’s committment to this traditional Russian millinery shape is admirable (she has worn the shape many times over the years) but this particularly combination of headpiece and dress (with those drapery-esque sleeves) was a LOT of look.

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Princess Sophie of Isenburg, who would marry Prince Georg Friedrich of Prussia a month later, paired her colorful couture dress and jacket with an equally vibrant headpiece. Built on a pale beigey-pink silk abaca bandeau with swishy curving edge, the headpiece was trimmed with a birdcage veil, an over-arc of black burnt feathers and a trio of blue, caramel and pink flower feathers on the side. There are countless reasons not to like the headpiece with the ensemble that I continue to ignore, simply because it was of the few ensembles at this event that felt free and fun.

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Stephanie, Hereditary Princess of Baden, wore a giant ivory silk chiffon rose headpiece with petal edges tinged in pink. I love a millinery statement but this this one was dulled by her ‘whole lot of biscuit’ ensemble. Princess Ursula of Bavaria, on the other hand, played up her black straw bow headpiece with feathers, pairing it with a black and white suit. The feather work on this headpiece is worth a second look- a fantastic dahlia flower of black and white striped goose biot feathers with a red center was surrounded by dotted pheasant feathers with a firework display of black coque feathers shooting around the top and side.  Yes, it’s dated now but I still love its bold design and scale.

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Princess Virginia von Fürstenberg, who had been a longtime friend and companion to the widowed Prince Rainier, topped her navy silk dress and scarf and lace jacket with a shiny straw cloche hat in the same colour. The design was simply trimmed with a navy hatband and wide binding around the extended brim.

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That wraps up our look at the Monaco royal wedding nine years ago, and the 44 royal hats and headpieces that attended its multi-day celebration. Which hats in this last group stand out to you most? Which overall royal hat at this event was your favourite?

Jump to this post for an index of other royal hats that appeared at this wedding. 

Photos from Getty as indicated 

10 thoughts on “Monaco Royal Wedding: Guests from Non-Reigning Royal Houses

  1. Lovely to see Shahbanou Farah, who wears these turbans well. P.S. how chic is Bernadette Chirac in that navy hat with the great feather trim?

    For Princess Marina, I thought this was a great ensemble: hat, dress, and all considering some of her other appearances over the years. Chic and glamorous. Clothilde’s whole look is well done, although I can also see the argument for a more streamlined headpiece.

    We knew Camilla of Bourbon-Two Sicilies wouldn’t disappoint in a couture ensemble! While perhaps a bit cheesy, I find it a good subtle nod rather than having words written across a hat (like Eugenie’s “love” boater hat from a couple summers ago); the only thing I’m not a fan of here are the odd metallic sleeve cuffs and pocket covering.

    Maria Margarita was simply fabulous with that beautiful beaded dress and Treacy hat; definitely among the best dressed at this wedding.

    Despite it not being designed as a formal hat, I think Princess Micaëla’s hat worked quite well with her outfit (which I enjoyed because of the orange and magenta color combo) and for the occasion. The Duchess of Bragança’s hat, on the other hand, did not flatter her IMO; get her a better brim and trim, and this could be a stellar ensemble!

    Margarita of Romania looked quite nice and this is certainly a good hat and color choice for her, but it feels too reminiscent of HM Queen Elizabeth’s look at the Cambridge wedding only a few months previously. Katherine of Serbia’s fascinator is unoffensive and unmemorable unfortunately.

    Despite it clearly being a matching combo, I kinda love Maria Vladimirovna just went for it with this kokoshnik hat, outfit, and eye shadow. If you can’t be a Romanov pretender and be over-the-top now and then, who can you be?

    I’m still not the biggest fan of the wavy bandeau going over Sophie of Isenburg’s head, but it’s the very visible elastic holding it in place that truly bothers me. Despite that small issue, I love this whole look now! (I remember not caring for it back in 2011). Stephanie of Baden suffers the same fate as Katherine of Serbia unfortunately, but Ursula of Bavaria does not! The large striped bow, feathers, and feather flower make for a great fascinator that pairs very well with her outfit; very chic! And while I don’t know if this is the most flattering brim choice for Virginia von Fürstenburg, she looked great overall, especially with those shoes! (although I would think her dark hosiery would be hot)

  2. I haven’t had time to comment this week, but it was lovely to see all those hats (and outfits!)
    Rather a curious mixture for such a high key event: from very streamlined and beautiful looks from the royals to repurposed beach hats and cocktail dresses from less sophisticated dressers.
    (I never quite understand why people wear cocktail dresses to a religious ceremony. If you don’t have the opportunity to change between the wedding mass and the evening’s entertainment, you could at least add a jacket, a shawl or a bolero to dress down the blitz a bit when in church!)
    Another thing which surprises me:
    there doesn’t seem to be a milliner in Monaco. Maybe there was one in the days of Princess Grace, but not anymore? P. Grace started out wearing hats by Jean Barthet (Paris) my former employer, and I remember we had her daughter Princess Stephanie as a client sometimes, in the ‘eighties. Princess Caroline, who was a close friend of the late Karl Lagerfeld, always dresses in Chanel and P. Charlene doesn’t seem to have a favourite milliner.
    Does anyone know of a milliner in Monaco?

    • Wies, Wikipedia lists Monaco’s population as less than 37,000, so that doesn’t sound like enough to support even one milliner. I imagine that shopping trips to Milan or Paris are routine for people who are that wealthy! And if the royals of this principality have so little interest in hats, perhaps hat-wearing is not the done thing for other residents either.

      Wasn’t Princess Stephanie something of an enfant terrible in the ’80s?

      • Oh HatQueen, yes she was! She tried to be a singer (did one song) and then a designer. At one time she started a bathing suit brand with a friend called “Pool position” if I remember correctly. It was for their first fashion show we did hats, or bathing caps or something at Jean Barthet’s.
        From designing she went on to love affairs with men her family disapproved of and then to unsuccessful marriages.
        In her defense it must be said she was a teenager when her mother died and must have been much affected by it.

        • Oh excuse me, Mittenmary, I was replying to HatQueen instead of you.
          Stephanie was a very good swimmer (hence the swimwear) and in her later life she became much involved in charity (one career that is always open to Royalty).

    • I think the curious mixture of fashion was partly due to the timing- I believe the religious ceremony began at five o’clock in the evening, which, you’d think, would call for cocktail dress instead of morning coats and hats. I remember commentators being perplexed about it.

  3. Another mixed bag of failures and successes! Failures: Camilla, Micaela, and Maria Vladimirovna – all too much, and not in a good way! Like Virginia, I also rather love Sophie Isenburg’s ensemble – it was exuberant and well put together, for me. I don’t usually go for turban’s, but Farah Diba looked very elegant here. Margarita Romania looked lovely, but a bit matchy and safe, so Maria Margarita of Anjou wins it for me – fabulous hat nicely complimenting a good dress.

    • Great summary, trickymum! I’d pick Sophie Isenburg as the winner for the fresh look, but Maria Margarita’s hat is a pretty variation on what is now a familiar style.

      Since I haven’t commented much this week, I just wanted to add that it’s probably no surprise that the more experienced hat wearers fared the best. My favorites: Max, Mary, and Sophie.

      • Agree with you about Max, Mary, and Sophie, mittenmary. Would also add Queen Silvia.
        It was a lot of fun to see all of these photos, but I think that a lot of sartorial misfires that we saw could have been avoided had a stylist been engaged, as HQ noted earlier this week.

  4. Princess Micaëla appears to be wearing either a satellite dish, or her dog’s cone-of-shame. Princess Sophie is the winner here!

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