This week, we’ve enjoyed a series of posts on the cultural side of royal millinery, brought to us by New Zealand reader Sandra. She is back today for the final installment in this series- Welcome, Sandra!
As we saw in the previous two posts, royals adapt their dress (and hats) to respect other cultures and they also accept the honor of wearing hats and costumes from other cultures. We also see numerous royals embracing the heritage of their homelands by wearing traditional and folk costumes.
The Norwegian royal women are often spotted on National Day, May 17, in a bunad consisting of a colourfully embroidered vest, apron, skirt, belt and ringed headpiece or lace trimmed bonnet. They also wear these traditional folk outfits for festive occasions, such as the recent confirmations of Princess Ingrid, Prince Sverre and Leah Behn.
A beautiful family portrait taken for the 2019 confirmation of Princess Ingrid Alexandra shows the women of the family in bunads with personal connections. Queen Sonja (in a bunad from East Telemark) and King Harald gifted their grand-daughter a bunad from Aust-Telemark for her confirmation. Mette-Marit wore the Hardanger bunad given to her by that municipality for her 2001 wedding.
Queen Margrethe, Princess Benedikte and Queen Anne-Marie wore traditional bonnets on their visit to Klaksvig, Faroe Islands, in 1963. You can read more about Faroese traditional dress here.
For their visit to the Faroe Islands in 2018, Prince Frederick , Prince Christian and Prince Vincent wore folded red and blue striped woven caps; Princess Isabella and Princess Josephine wore traditional blue bonnets embroidered with flowers.
The Swedish royal women wear bright blue and yellow embroidered folk dresses each year on Swedish National Day. For the married women, this traditional dress also includes a white folded linen headpiece.
For Prince Gabriel’s christening in 2017, Princess Sofia wore the traditional dress and beautifully embroidered cap from her home province of Dalarna (also the Duchy granted to the young prince at the time of his birth).
Princess Margaretha of Sweden is photographed with her two eldest children, all in Swedish folk costume, in London in 1966.
The Scandinavian royals are not the only ones who embrace heritage clothing. Princess Alexandra of Hanover, standing between her parents Prince Ernst August and Princess Caroline, had trouble with the wind and the straw hat that forms part of traditional Monegasque dress. The family was marking the principality’s national day in 2007.
Many here will be familiar with the lace mantilla and high peineta comb which forms part of traditional dress for the royal women of Spain. In 2004, Queen Sophia wore one to the wedding of her son, (now King) Felipe.
Queen Letizia wore a mantilla and peinetta in 2004 to meet Pope John Paul II at the Vatican. Interestingly, in 2015 she broke with tradition as a bearer of the national flag and didn’t wear black and a mantilla to a ceremony. Lace mantilla have been worn in Spain since the 17th century with the comb added in the 19th century.
And, finally, taken around 1947, this photo shows the royal children of Greece skipping in their garden in traditional costume. From left, Princess Sophia (who became Queen of Spain), Crown Prince, later King, Constantine, and Princess Irene.
I’m sure there are many more intriguing examples of cultural headwear to be seen and look forward to the comments section!
Immense thanks, Sandra, for this great look at royal hats with significant cultural meaning. For this week’s discussion question, let’s continue the dialogue that Sandra has already set for us, dearest readers- what other royal hats can you think of with cultural connections?