Belgian Monarchs Visit Oman

Sultan of Oman Haitham bin Tariq Al Said the Honorable Lady Ahad bint Abdullah welcomed King Philippe and Queen Mathilde of Belgian to the Al Alam Palace in Muscat on the second day of the Belgian Monarch’s official visit to Oman and United Arab Emirates. For this event, Queen Mathilde wore a new brimless hat in muted burgundy straw, simply trimmed with a draped bow on the side.

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This toque shape is a not a new one for Mathilde and it suits her well, framing her face while having a enough presence to stand on its own against her floral frock. The colour is great, both contrasting against the pale dress while highlighting the darker tones in what really is an exquisite pattern. A larger scale hat would compete with the voluminous skirt (and statement belt) and this smaller design is just right.

Designer: Fabienne Delvigne. ‘Geisha’ Printed Taffeta Dress with Pleats by Natan.
Previously Worn: This hat is new

For a visit to visit the Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque, Queen Mathilde topped a beautifully patterned and embroidered Anita Dongre full length dress with a burgundy headscarf. It’s such a beautiful look and another example of diplomatic dressing at its vest.

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What do you think of these looks on the Belgian queen?

Images from Getty as indicated  

Inventory: Countess of Wessex’s Deep Pink & Burgundy Hats

To mark the Countess of Wessex’s birthday today, we’re peeking into her millinery closet for a look at all of her dark pink and burgundy designs:

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Designer: Jess Collett; unknown; Philip Treacy
Introduced: April 23,  2000; April 11 , 2004; March 15, 2006

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Designer: both are Jane Taylor
Introduced:  June 21, 2017; December 25, 2019

There is a marked change of shape and style between the first three and final two hats, not surprising as more than a decade separates the two groups! While the early bold shapes are lovely to revisit (and a good reminder of how brave Sophie’s early hats were!), that spectacular bergère from Ascot in 2017 steals the show for me.

Images from Tim Graham Photo Library and Pool/Samir Hussein/WireImage via Getty; Getty as indicated

Imperial Royal Wedding: Guests

Guests at today’s wedding of Grand Duke George Mikhailovich of Russia and Rebecca Bettarini included several from royal houses, beginning with the groom’s immediate family.

George’s mother, Grand Duchess Mariya Vladimirovna Romanova, wore a pleated blue silk Kokoshnik headpiece with brown sable trim. The headpiece has layered blue silk bows around the back.

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The Grand Duchess’ sister, Helene Kirby, Countess Dvinskaya, wore a hat in the same orange boucle as her suit with a wide brown fur bumper brim.

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The bride’s mother, Carla Virginia Cacciatore, topped her blue and green ruffle collared suit with in a brown hat. The hat features freeform sinamay ruffles atop a shallow pillbox base.

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Crown Princess Elia of Albania wore the loveliest pale gray-green beret percher trimmed with green silk flowers, leaves and a net veil.

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Princess Isabelle of Liechtenstein wore a black velvet pyramid hat with wide faux fur cuffed brim.

Princess Lea of Belgium wore a brown fur Cossack style hat.
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The Duchess of Braganza wore a deep eggplant veiled pillbox placed on the back of her head.

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Princess Marie-Marguerite, Duchess of Anjou, wore a statement oversize saucer in peachy-tan sinamay with steep sidesweep. The hat is trimmed with feathers studded in raw-edge crin and sinamay ruffles en masse beneath the brim on its raised side.

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What do you think of the hats that stepped out today in St. Petersburg for this event?

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Images from Getty and social media as indicated  

Belgian National Day

The Belgian royal family celebrated their country’s national holiday today with a Te Deum mass at The Cathedral of St. Michael and St. Gudula followed by a military parade outside the Royal Palace.

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Queen Mathilde wore a new bandeau headpiece covered in a textured striped fabric in the palest beigey-pink.

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The caped floral dress requires a light millinery touch and the scale and subtle texture of this design works well. It’s nicely finished, with bias placement of the stripe and not a pucker or underside structure to be seen. While it lets the dress be the focus, which I suppose was its aim, I’m afraid I find it a bit underwhelming

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Designer: Fabienne Delvigne
Previously Worn: This headpiece is new

Princess Elisabeth also wore a new hat, in textured deep orange (or tomato red?!) straw. The pillbox design is simply trimmed with a knotted sash on the side.

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It’s a great scale on Elisabeth, the weave of the hat providing textural contrast to the floral pattern on her dress. We’ve not seen her in many hats and this one is a good ‘beginner.’

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Designer:  Fabienne Delvigne’s “Kennedy” design. Dress by Natan
Previously Worn: This hat is new

Enrolled in this year’s course at the Belgian Military Academy, Princess Elisabeth marched in the military parade in full uniform.

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Princess Astrid and Prince Laurent also attended in military uniform, Princess Astrid in a green hat with smart curved brim and Prince Laurent in a traditional cap (Princess Claire did not attend).

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Today’s celebration officially included Princess Delphine and her partner, Jim O’Hare, for the first time. She wore a vibrant patterned dress and matching beret from Belgian ethical fashion brand Erratum, whose work is inspired by Africa.

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It’s a bold look but one that seems authentic for the artist, whose work is described as vibrant, playful and quirky. The same words describe this ensemble and that’s exactly what makes me love it. Yes, it’s lot of pattern and the hat could really use some structure (there’s a reason fabric hats are blocked over sinamay bases!) but its a confident statement that I wish we saw more in royal fashion.

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Designer: Erratum
Previously Worn: This hat is new

Princess Marie-Esméralda attended the Te Deum in a very pretty pink pleated bandeau headpiece.

Designer: unknown
Previously Worn: I believe this is new

It’s wonderful to see larger events opening up, especially with they include the debut of a new princess! What do you think of this group of hats today in Brussels?

Images from Getty as indicated  

Belgian Monarchs Mourn Flood Disaster

King Philippe and Queen Mathilde marked a national mourning day for victims of recent severe floods today in Verviers where they met with rescue workers and people impacted by the disaster

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For the event, Queen Mathilde repeated her circle headpiece covered in black silk.

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The headpiece’s streamlined pillbox or bandeau look from the front suits more solemn events such as this and the open crown makes it suitably seasonal. We’ve not seen such a clear back view of this design as is shown above, and the overlapping edges create a lovely swirl. With her checked black and white dress and black accessories, this tops another elegant look for the Belgian queen.

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Designer: Fabienne Delvigne. Dress by Carolina Herrera. 
Previously Worn: May 25, 2018; Jul 9, 2015;  Dec 12, 2014

What do you think of Queen Mathilde’s headpiece today?

Images from Getty as indicated