While Queen Elizabeth remains in mourning following the Duke of Edinburgh’s death, celebrating her birthday with vibrant colour does not feel appropriate. Instead, we’re going to follow the an example set by her mother’s famous White Wardrobe for 1938 visit to Paris and celebrate Her Majesty’s 95th birthday with a look at her white and ivory hats.
A clerical note- many of the Queen’s white and ivory hats are contrasted with a brim, crown or significant trimming in another colour. We’ll save these (along with the ecru and palest beige ones) for another inventory and concentrate here on the hats that are primarily white or ivory. In 2000, Queen Elizabeth had several hats in these hues in her wardrobe:
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Since 2004, she has added the following designs:
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Designer: Marie O’Reagan; unknown; unknown
Introduced: April 5, 2004; June 17, 2004; March 11, 2006
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Designer: both are Rachel Trevor Morgan
Introduced: June 21, 2007; June 23, 2007
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Designer: unknown; Rachel Trevor Morgan
Introduced: November 9, 2007; November 19, 2007
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Designer: Rachel Trevor Morgan; unknown
Introduced: March 19, 2008; July 22, 2008
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Designer: Angela Kelly (made by Stella McLaren); unknown
Introduced: June 18, 2009 (with flower later removed); June 20, 2009
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Designer: all three by Angela Kelly (made by Stella McLaren)
Introduced: November 28, 2009; July 1, 2010; July 20, 2010
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Designer: unknown; unknown; Rachel Trevor Morgan
Introduced: July 22, 2010; November 24, 2010; April 15, 2011
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Designer: Angela Kelly (made by Stella McLaren); Angela Kelly (made by Stella McLaren); unknown
Introduced: May 17, 2011; October 29, 2011; December 25, 2011
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Designer: both are Angela Kelly (made by Stella McLaren)
Introduced: June 3, 2012; June 4, 2013
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Designer: Angela Kelly (made by Stella McLaren); unknown; Angela Kelly (made by Stella McLaren);
Introduced: June 21, 2013; May 7, 2014; June 5, 2014;
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Designer: all are Angela Kelly (made by Stella McLaren)
Introduced: June 7, 2014; July 23, 2014; June 24, 2015;
Designer: unknown; Angela Kelly (made by Stella McLaren)
Introduced: June 25, 2015I; January 11, 2016
I’ll be honest- when I think of the Queen’s hats, few white designs jump to mind. As such, I was surprised to see so many (granted, the first five seem to be retired). Where the queen does not disappoint, however, is in her breadth of shape, scale and embellishment. These might all be white/ivory hats but they are not boring.
What do you notice about Her Majesty’s white hats?
Images from Getty as indicated; Carlo Allegri/AFP; Tim Graham Photo Library, Tim Graham Photo Library, Tim Graham Photo Library, John Stillwell – WPA Pool, Gareth Fuller-Pool, WPA Pool – Arthur Edwards, Stefan Gosatti, Mark Large – WPA Pool and Francois Guillot/AFP via Getty; Press Association; Max Mumby/Indigo via Getty
This seems to be another version of #20. Or perhaps it’s an entirely new hat.
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Incidentally, in your post on Prince Philips’ funeral, you mentioned that the Queen’s black hat was a repeat. I can’t find it in your black inventory. It’s very similar to hat #9, but I don’t believe it’s it. Is it another of these?
HatQueen, thanks so much for this delightful Inventory. Yesterday, when I awoke on HM’s birthday without a 95th birthday celebration of Queen Elizabeth’s hats, I was rather disappointed, but then you came through with the goods later in the day! HM’s white hats are absolutely the PERFECT way to celebrate during this millinery dry spell and HM’s time of mourning.
1. Not being as fashion-savvy as many of the other commenters here at RoyalHats, Is it quite possible that a hat is retired primarily because of the ensemble’s retirement, and not because of the hat itself? As we age, we all know that our bodies make very creative adjustments in size, shape, and position (so blaming the dry cleaner/laundry for shrinking clothes is really null and void.) Princess Anne, being the exception to this rule, can more readily dig deeper into her hat closet, surely because of her clothes still in circulation. Great example – the black hat worn at her father’s funeral last week was worn at her Aunt Margaret’s funeral back in April of 2002, exactly 19 years later!
2. Is it possible that the two hats below are actually one and the same, but reworked for the each ensemble? I’d like to think so, as I recycle a lot, especially on this Earth Day.
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3. I think there is a different, original hat for the AK #25, but I can’t find it.
Good call- it looks indeed like the blue trim on this hat was replaced with the daisies in #2
Extremely interesting post, thank you. What do I (as an amateur) notice? That I miss Rachel Trevor Morgan´s lighter, airier designs: I love 4 & 5.
I am oddly fond of #21 – it has a sci-fi quality to it, Queen of Another Planet, and goes well with the shoulder swath or shawl.
Also the wedgewood blue and white of #11
Those are my favourites too!
Wow. Hat Queen again you show such good judgement for this post to celebrate the Queen’s birthday but respect her period of mourning with another White Wardrobe. There are so many very good hats here. I have to mention the very first one at the top because I have never seen it before and the pattern on the brim is so interesting. #9 is so cheery and #11 is just gorgeous. #24 and #25 are very elegant.
In the “retired” batch, my preferences lie with 4 thru 7. The styles are very becoming, and I love the embellishments (ribbons, feathers, bows) on all of them. The pop of color on #7 is particularly pretty, while #4 remains my overall favorite.
In the next batch, 4 & 5 have lovely brims which suit Her Majesty. #8 is a hat I have never seen, and the soft green is very beautiful. #11 has the brim I love, while #13 is very Canadian, so it gets my vote based on that! 🙂 #17’s entire look is lovely as the soft grey is a color Her Majesty doesn’t often wear. The hat and coat are cozy, yet stylish. My final choice is #24 because of it’s overall softness and the different textures and embellishments on it.
Overall, this was a wonderful grouping of hats, and I extend my blessings to Her Majesty in the year ahead.
#4 and #5 are my favorites- the brown trim and crisp white shape of #4 are stunning, and I also really like #28 with the red and white feathers.
I’m also quite surprised there are so many! There is so much variation here, but some classics I have always loved.
The second and fourth ones from the early collection are very chic. I particularly love the white swirls with the unexpected purpple plumage. I’m a sucker for a wide brim and so number 4 has always appealed, she did flirt with bigger brims for a bit in the mid 00s, many of them were later reduced, which I tihnk is a shame, as they suit her so well. Number 17 is a winner by these lights too.
10 and 11 are interesting variations on the same theme – the former not a success, but the latter really beautiful, and shows how a deft hand can handle a lot of trimming and keep it cohesive.
Of the more recent ones 25 and 29 are both lovely, I was a big fan of that textured cloche worn in Berlin, and a shame it’s not been repeated.
Bearing in mind that we think of the Queen as a colourful dresser, I was surprised to see so many white hats, although some obviously go with brighter ensembles. I was also surprised at the variety of styles, as I thought she had settled more regularly into the slightly upswept brim style of late.
My favourites are the 4th one in the early section, with the subtle feathers and swirl, #11 for the lovely lacy colour combination, and the squeezed crowned #19. I thought her Jubilee hat, #22, didn’t quite work for her, but I rather like the variation on the same theme of hat #27.