Two years ago on March 11, 2019, I wrote here about the Commonwealth Day Service at Westminster Abbey. One of the royal hats covered was this one, worn by the Duchess of Sussex.
My critique about the hat was lukewarm, something I still think was fair. There is, however, another piece of information we now know about this period in the Duchess’ life- when these photos were taken, she was not okay. She was deeply troubled and struggling, at a breaking point of personal crisis.
If I had known this at the time, would I have changed my words of commentary? Maybe. I think many have taken a particularly gentle approach when writing/speaking about Empress Masako, knowing of her long mental health struggle. This has me thinking this morning about the true value of royal fashion blogging, how it contributes to celebrity royal culture, and what it means for (and takes from) all involved.
This post is not an announcement that I’m hanging up my blogging hat. It’s questioning how I can continue in a way that is healthy and empowering for all. For me, the best and most unexpected surprise of writing Royal Hats (aside from creating a community of wonderful readers!) has been the opportunity and platform to champion milliners and millinery around the world (stay tuned later this spring for a new endeavor in this area). It has long been important to me that Royal Hats be a respectful forum for royal watching and discussion. I’m proud of what we’ve created here together but I think it’s good to step back to reconsider, evaluate and learn when opportunity to do so is presented. I welcome your thoughts.
Images from Getty as indicated