Platinum Jubilee Countdown: 10


We’re down to the final ten! This series wouldn’t be complete without the infamous “pink swirl” worn on a visit to Oman in 2010 and to Ascot in 2011. It’s such a beauty. Philip Somerville design made by Stella Mclaren.

Embed from Getty Images Embed from Getty Images
Embed from Getty Images
Embed from Getty Images

Image from Getty as indicated  


30 thoughts on “Platinum Jubilee Countdown: 10

  1. I do love this hat, but am struck in seeing it again that it works so much better with the pink dress than with the white coat. The hat is so dressy, and the coat is not – too contrasty, too heavy, almost a buttoned-up lab coat with its pointy collar. The pink dress serves as more of a backdrop that doesn’t distract from the glory of the hat and the brooch.

  2. I found an awesome peach swirl to enjoy, including a fantastic rear view. This beauty was worn in 1992, almost 20 years earlier. Wies, thanks for your detailed explanation. Not a milliner or seamster, you did lose me, though.

    June 9, 1992: Paris (her brooch got pinched in the 3rd photo!)
    Embed from Getty Images

    • Often when the brooch is removed, it’s because HM has removed her coat upon going inside and the brooch is transferred to the dress underneath, which I thought might be the case here. Here is a photo of the full-length outfit:
      (We now need to embark on a search for the brooch in more recent photos to ensure that it wasn’t “lifted” by someone at the French palace! 😊)

    • Jimbo, you mentioned a “brown shoe alert” a couple of weeks ago. This orange swirl outfit above is one of the very few that the Queen wore with multi-colored shoes and purse.
      Embed from Getty Images

      • So strange but seeing this particular photo makes me think in the deep recesses of my mind that I’m sure Princess Margaret had a similar hat.

    • Oh lovely! A peach or melon ice cream swirl! Not the same fabric (more like silk chiffon) and not draped the same way.
      I’m not such a fan of the jacket though. When was it that those broad shoulders were abandoned? By mid-nineties? It seems like a lifetime ago.

      Sorry about the complicated explanations, you just can’t do millinery by correspondence!

    • This peach swirl hat is gorgeous. Another great find. Thank you.
      I don’t recall seeing it before. And the two tone shoes and handbag are most unusual for Queen Elizabeth.

  3. Wies, thank you so much for explaining it so clearly, once I’d read your notes looking at the picture it all made sense. It is such beautiful work.

    Another question for you and Hat Queen – is there only one pink hat in existence? When I look at the Ice Pink hat there are six swirls leading to the crown. When I look at the other which looks a more rose colour (could be inside lighting affecting the colour) there are far less swirls and I hate to say it but the finish looks rather different. Additionally, the bow looks entirely different. I’ve looked and looked until I’m almost cross-eyed.

    • I think it’s the same hat. It’s probably just the light playing tricks on the fabric. And this hat looks different from all sides, which makes it so interesting and attractive.
      But the only person who could tell for sure is Stella McLaren.

  4. This is one of my favorite hats of the queen ever. Glad it made the countdown. The shape is so graceful and interesting without looking overly experimental and just the perfect color for both HM and the style of hat.

  5. This is one of my favorite hats of the queen ever. Glad it made the countdown. The shape is so graceful and interesting without looking overly experimental and just the perfect color for both HM and the style of hat.

  6. No complaints here – it’s just great all around. If my research is correct, HM actually wore it for the first time at a garden party in Scotland in 2009. The inset photo, attached to the ensemble’s display in the link below was taken at the party, where she is chatting with a delightfully garbed Scotsman. (Sorry, the entire photo is on Pinterest.)

  7. Yes, famous indeed! I can’t remember reading any negative comments about it, and it’s certainly one of my favourites. The impression is delightful, but it’s also a hat where the more you look, the more you realise how beautifully executed this is for the whole thing to look so effortless.

    • A similar one, also by Philip Somerville (and very likely made by Stella McLaren)
      Embed from Getty Images

  8. I love this hat. Gorgeous design and colour and so beautifully made. It looks like the material is ‘organza satiné’ judging by the exquisite sheen of it. I think that translates as satin organza, in any case it’s pure silk and very flattering.

    • Wies, how do they drape that beautiful piece of frothy material so that it looks as if it’s just floating over the top. I presume it’s attached to some kind of “mould” but it all looks so seamless?

      • Hi Lesley, it would be easier to explain in drawing, but I’ll give it a try. I’ve never made a hat like this, but I’ve made a lot of draped, silk turbans and I think this is how it’s done:

        Underneath the fabric, there is a hat. A parasisal hat with a classic shape (round crown and lampshade or sloping brim). The draping is done with a large strip of fabric, cut on the bias. The ends of this strip are cut on the grain, therefore diagonal. They are sewn together, thus forming a diagonal seam in what now looks like a ‘tunnel’ of fabric. The seam will be hidden in one of the folds, presumably at the back of the hat.

        One end of the tunnel is sewn onto the edge of the inner side of the brim, then flipped over to the outer side of the brim. (I hope this still makes sense to you). The silk is then draped in a swirling movement, going from the bottom of the hat to the top, moving counter clockwise so to speak. At the top of the hat the folds are deeper, covering each other and tucked away artfully to make a nice finishing.

        There are no pictures of the top of the hat, so I can’t see exactly how that was conceived, but the draping was done by an expert hand. The silk is steamed to fix the movement, then the folds are sewn at strategic points to the underlying straw with invisible, tiny, single stitches (called ‘points noués’ in French: notted stitches).

        The beautiful bow is also made with bias cut silk with some kind of supporting material inside, maybe crinoline band.

        (Draping and sewing may have been done by two different people. When I worked at Jean Barthet’s in the 1980’s, my boss used to drape leftover bits of silk into artful turbans – the fun part of it – leaving the workroom to deal with the pins and the complicated finishings!)

  9. Oh what a treat! The pink swirl hat ….. absolutely gorgeous.
    I remember it very well from Royal Ascot with the pretty white coat and the exquisite Williamson Diamond Brooch. But it’s lovely to see the hat with the pink dress and all white accessories in Oman. I think I prefer it with the dress.

    Another hat that makes you wonder how Her Majesty felt when she first saw it and tried it on.

    Thank you Hat Queen. I can’t believe we only have 9 more days.

  10. I love this hat with a passion. A navy coat would also look great with it as well. I love to see the cream coloured shoes worn with it as well.

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