Ethiopian Royal Hats Part IV: Visits With Foreign Royals

I’m so pleased to welcome back longtime reader, hat aficionado (follow him on Instagram or Twitter) and friend of Royal Hats, Jake Short, for the fourth post in a 5-part series on the history and hats of the Ethiopian Imperial Family (see Part 3 here).  

Visits With Foreign Royals

State and official visits to Ethiopia and abroad were also more common during the later decades of Haile Selassie’s reign. In 1954 the Emperor, along with his youngest son Prince Sahle Selassie and granddaughter Princess Seble Desta (daughter of Princess Tenagnework), visited President Dwight D. and First Lady Mamie Eisenhower in Washington, DC (a clearer photo of this meeting can be seen here). Another visit to DC in 1963 saw the Emperor in a military cap and Princess Ruth Desta in a typical 1960s domed turban, while US First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy wore a pillbox hat (seen here in color).

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Haile Selassie visited the Netherlands in 1954 and was photographed holding a plumed ceremonial military hat while Queen Juliana wore a calot with swooping feather trim.

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Fifteen years later In January 1969, Queen Juliana reciprocated with a state visit to Ethiopia, accompanied by Prince Bernhard, Princess Beatrix and Prince Claus. For their arrival in Addis Abeba, Haile Selassie wore a formal bicorn hat while Juliana wore a black hat with woven halo brim studded with turquoise flowers. Princess Beatrix wore a tall, patterned turban.  


During this visit, these wonderful photos were captured with the Emperor in his military cap and Queen Juliana in turbans- one covered in pleated ruffles and the other, smooth.

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During this trip, Queen Juliana was photographed at a children’s hospital in a capulet hat made of chunky, textured braid that was popular at the time. Another day, she repeated the black straw halo brimmed hat (with turquoise flowers removed!) while Princess Beatrix wore a white plaited pillbox.  On January 31, 1969, Queen Juliana wore a dark bumper hat while Princess Beatrix wore a navy brimmed hat in chunky navy straw braid with navy hatband tied in a side bow. Finally, Queen Juliana donned another turban for a visit to the Holy Trinity Ethiopian Orthodox Cathedral; Princess Beatrix paired a white and black pinstriped dress with a dark hat with wide, upturned brim

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King Paul and Queen Frederika of Greece visited Addis Ababa in 1959. Here they are seen with the Emperor and Empress, all wearing hats suited to their rank and typical for that time.

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A decade later in 1969, the Emperor met Pope Paul VI, who wore a white zucchetto skullcap.

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Again in his military cap, Haile Selassie is seen with other royals at a ceremony in Iran in 1971 to celebrate 2,500 years of the Persian Empire; Queen Fabiola and King Baudouin of Belgium (with Princess Anne of the UK behind them), Queen Ingrid and King Frederik of Denmark, Queen Anne-Marie of Greece (behind Emperor Haile Selassie), and Shah Reza Pahlavi and Shahbanou Farah Diba of Iran can be seen wearing hats (many more royals were also in attendance at this grand event).

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Relations with the Japanese Imperial Family, another reigning imperial family, were cordial and saw multiple visits. Haile Selassie visited Japan in 1956 with his eldest daughter Princess Tenagnework (seated, wearing a veiled calot), her daughter Princess Aida Desta (wearing a feathered casque hat), and Prince Makonnen, Duke of Harar. Crown Prince Asfaw Wossen and Crown Princess Medferiashwork visited Japan in 1959; while neither wore hats during a duck hunting session, their hosts Crown Prince Akihito and Crown Princess Michiko did. Crown Princess Medferiashwork was seen during this same visit in a toque-like hat during a visit to a department store.

Crown Prince Akihito and Crown Princess Michiko visited Ethiopia in 1960, with Akihito (carrying a top hat) being formally received by Emperor Haile Selassie at the airport. Crown Princess Medferiashwork wore a calot while she and Michiko visited a girls’ school; Medferiashwork was later seen in a headscarf when she accompanied Michiko and Akihito (both in hats) on a visit to Mt. Entoto just north of Addis Ababa.

Finally, there were multiple interactions with the British Royal Family. A 1954 state visit to the UK by the Emperor and his son the Duke of Harar began at Victoria Station, where Queen Elizabeth II greeted Haile Selassie, who wore a ceremonial military hat trimmed with lion’s mane!

The Queen Mother, Princess Margaret, Princess Mary, and Princess Alice, the Duchess of Gloucester, who all wore calots typical of the mid-1950s.

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The Queen wore a petaled/feathered calot as she, the Emperor, and the Duke of Edinburgh traveled to Buckingham Palace.

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A 1965 visit to Ethiopia by the Queen and Prince Philip saw only military hats from the host royals (the Empress had died in 1962, and there is a lack of photos of other female royals to determine their level of participation in the visit). 

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Queen Elizabeth, as you’d expect, wore several hats during this visit.

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While the visit saw no royal hats otherwise, there were many instances of tribal hats and headpieces worn by those who came to meet the royal guests.

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Another informative post, Jake- thank you! The Ethiopian princesses’ calots and half hats during the Japanese visit (and reciprocal visit five years later) are beautiful examples of fashion of the time! It’s also a fascinating reminder how millinery styles changed (inflated!) from the 1950s to the 1960s! How well did Queen Juliana’s cream turban pair with her 1960s sunglasses?! Such a fun look!

Jake returns next week for the final post in this series. 

Images from Getty and BNA Photographic

Monaco Royal Wedding: Guests from Non-Reigning Royal Houses

We wrap up our week-long look at the hats worn to Prince Albert and Princess Charlene’s religious wedding on July 2, 2011 with those worn by guests from non-reigning royal houses.

Empress Farah wore a pleated turban in the same lime green silk as her jacket and dress that tied at the back in a bow. It was a very coordinated look with subtle contrast provided by the use of both matte and shiny sides of the fabric twisted together and narrow fringe on the bottom of the back bow’s tie.

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Princess Marina of Savoy wore a picture hat in layered navy and black straw, sharply raised on one side and simply trimmed with a slim black straw hatband. The layered straw gives an interesting effect, merging the two colours surprisingly well, especially with the top layer of the straw brim cut shorter than the bottom navy layer to give some lightness to the design around the outer brim’s edge. On its own the hat was great. It’s the pairing with this feather-hemmed, bedazzled, cocktail-all-the-way dress that gives me issue. It’s a dress that simply doesn’t suit a hat.

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Marina’s daughter-in-law, Princess Clotilde, paired her ruffle trimmed scarlet dress with an oversize flower headpiece in black silk. While the black accessories work with the dress, I’d have preferred a sleeker percher hat to provide a more streamlined counterpoint for the statement dress.

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Princess Camilla of Bourbon-Two Sicilies is well known for her dramatic sartorial choices and attended this event in the ultimate (most literal? cheesiest?) symbol of love. Her large heart-shaped hat was covered in the same pink silk as her outfit, emphasized with the same magenta handpainted ombre effect as on the collar of her jacket. Well known to be one of Prince Albert’s closest friends, I always wondered if Camilla’s pink statement of love was directed at the unfortunate rumours that plagued the run up to this event… or if this was always her plan. My guess is the latter. Either way, it was quite a hat.

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Maria Margarita de Bourbon, Duchess of Anjou, paired her beautifully embellished grey dress with a statement hat in slightly lighter grey straw. The design was lavishly trimmed with grey silk oversize roses and crystal studded cut feathers placed below the brim of the saucer’s raised side.

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Princess Micaëla of Orleans wore a warm tan-hued raffia sun hat with wide, pleated brim from the Madagascar Hat Company. A twisted sash hatband in the same magenta silk as her skirt was added to the hat, presumably to link the ensemble together.

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The Duchess of Bragança paired her pale blue silk suit with a simple ecru straw hat with flat crown and upturned kettle brim.

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Crown Princess Margarita of Romania was a sunny vision in yellow with wide brimmed hat. The design, by Romanian milliner Kristina Dragomir, featured a shallow, flat crown and gently downcurved brim and was trimmed with a yellow silk hatband and swath of dotted veil wrapped around the crown and tied in a bow across the back. I’m not always a fan of one-colour looks but this shade of yellow is so happy and well suited to Margarita (and successfully grounded by the cream accessories and pearl jewellery) that I can’t help but like it.

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Crown Princess Katherine of Serbia paired her ice blue silk beaded dress and jacket with a feminine headpiece of large white and blue ombre flower petal ruffles trimmed with loops of blue tube crin. I can see how the headpiece linked with her ensemble and I love the unconventional design but I think a less fussy piece (anything that didn’t look like layered cabbage leaves) would have been a better option.

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Grand Duchess Maria Vladimirovna of Russia wore a tall, peaked Kokoshnik-style headpiece in the same floral silk as her dress. Maria’s committment to this traditional Russian millinery shape is admirable (she has worn the shape many times over the years) but this particularly combination of headpiece and dress (with those drapery-esque sleeves) was a LOT of look.

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Princess Sophie of Isenburg, who would marry Prince Georg Friedrich of Prussia a month later, paired her colorful couture dress and jacket with an equally vibrant headpiece. Built on a pale beigey-pink silk abaca bandeau with swishy curving edge, the headpiece was trimmed with a birdcage veil, an over-arc of black burnt feathers and a trio of blue, caramel and pink flower feathers on the side. There are countless reasons not to like the headpiece with the ensemble that I continue to ignore, simply because it was of the few ensembles at this event that felt free and fun.

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Stephanie, Hereditary Princess of Baden, wore a giant ivory silk chiffon rose headpiece with petal edges tinged in pink. I love a millinery statement but this this one was dulled by her ‘whole lot of biscuit’ ensemble. Princess Ursula of Bavaria, on the other hand, played up her black straw bow headpiece with feathers, pairing it with a black and white suit. The feather work on this headpiece is worth a second look- a fantastic dahlia flower of black and white striped goose biot feathers with a red center was surrounded by dotted pheasant feathers with a firework display of black coque feathers shooting around the top and side.  Yes, it’s dated now but I still love its bold design and scale.

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Princess Virginia von Fürstenberg, who had been a longtime friend and companion to the widowed Prince Rainier, topped her navy silk dress and scarf and lace jacket with a shiny straw cloche hat in the same colour. The design was simply trimmed with a navy hatband and wide binding around the extended brim.

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That wraps up our look at the Monaco royal wedding nine years ago, and the 44 royal hats and headpieces that attended its multi-day celebration. Which hats in this last group stand out to you most? Which overall royal hat at this event was your favourite?

Jump to this post for an index of other royal hats that appeared at this wedding. 

Photos from Getty as indicated 

Royal Hats Last Year: The Rest

Royal Hats Year In Review 2014We have nearly come to the end of our review of all the hats, headpieces and feathery puffs we saw grace royal heads in 2014. Please click on each photo to link to the original post on each hat, complete with additional views, larger photos and detailed information. Here are the final royal hats we saw in 2014:

Austria- Archduchess Marie-Astrid (1-2), Archduchess Adelaide (3), Archduchess Margherita of Austria-Este (4) and Archduchess Anna-Gabriele (5)

 1. 2014-07-05 Amadeo and Elisabetta 31 2. Archduchess Marie Astrid, December 12, 2014 | Royal Hats 3. Archduchess Adelaide, July 5, 2014 | Royal Hats 4. Archduchess Margherita of Austria-Este , July 7, 2014 | Royal Hats 5. Archduchess Anna-Gabriele of Austria, July 7, 2014 | Royal Hats 

Romania- Princess Maria (6) and Crown Princess Margareta (7-8)

6. Crown Princess Maria, May 16, 2014 | Royal Hats  7. Crown Princess Margarita, May 16, 2014 | Royal Hats 8. Crown Princess Margarita, September 29, 2014 | Royal Hats

Italy- Duchess of Castro (9-10), Princess Cecilia of Bourbon-Parma (11) and Princess Maria of Bourbon-Parma (12)

9. Duchess of Castro, November 19, 2014 | Royal Hats  10. Duchess of Castro, December 12, 2014 | Royal Hats 11. Princess Cecilia of Bourbon-Parma, April 5, 2014 | The Royal Hats Blog 12. Princess Maria of Bourbon-Parma, April 5, 2014 | The Royal Hats Blog

Iran- Empress Farah and Greece- Princess Marie-Chantal

13. Empress Farah, December 12, 2014 | Royal Hats 14. Princess Marie-Chantal, June 7, 2014 in Philip Treacy |Royal Hats

British Nobility- Lady Brabourne (15-16), the Duchess of Devonshire (17-18) and the Dowager Duchess of Marlborough (19)

15. Baroness Brabourne, January 12, 2014 | The Royal Hats Blog 16. Baroness Brabourne, June 18, 2014 in Dillon Wallwork | Royal Hats 17. Duchess of Devonshire, July 10, 2014 | Royal Hats 18. Duchess of Devonshire, October 2, 2014 | Royal Hats 19. Dowager Duchess of Marlborough, October 24, 2014 | Royal Hats

The next post will FINALLY invite you all, dear readers, to formally nominate your favourite hat, least favourite hat and best overall hat style from the royal hats we saw in 2014. Will any of these hats make your list?

Please click on each photo to link back to the original post with additional information and photo sources

Funeral of Queen Fabiola

The Belgian Royal Family was joined by monarchs and representatives from numerous other royal houses for Queen Fabiola’s funeral today. Empress Michiko of Japan wore a petite black saucer hat that featured a flat fan bow and net tulle veil.

Empress Michiko, December 12, 2014 | Royal Hats

Queen Margrethe of Denmark repeated her a black Karakul fur toque with feather pouf trim.

Empress Michiko and Queen Margrethe, December 12, 2014 | Royal Hats Queen Margrethe, December 12, 2014 | Royal Hats Queen Margrethe, December 12, 2014 | Royal Hats

Queen Silvia of Sweden wore a black felt cloche hat with wide, folded black velvet band around the crown.

Queen Silvia, December 12, 2014 | Royal Hats Queen Silvia, December 12, 2014 | Royal Hats Queen Silvia, December 12, 2014 | Royal Hats

Queen Sofia of Spain wore a black pillbox which was covered in net tulle and wrapped with a band of black velvet around the outside of the hat.

Queen Sofia and Princess Beatrix, December 12, 2014 | Royal Hats Queen Sofia and Princess Beatrix, December 12, 2014 | Royal Hats

Princess Beatrix of the Netherlands repeated her black fur felt hat with pointed crown and upfolded felt and straw double brim.

Princess Beatrix, December 12, 2014 | Royal Hats

Empress Farah of Iran wore a black silk pleated turban that was interlaced with strands of metallic black straw and trimmed with a loosely woven black straw rosette.

Empress Farah, December 12, 2014 | Royal Hats

Princess Astrid of Norway, who accompanied King Harald, wore a black bumper hat. At first glance, I thought this hat and coat combination were made from the same Karakul fur but after a closer look, I believe they are made of textured wool.

Princess Astrid, December 12, 2014 | Royal Hats

And finally, the Duchess of Castro wore a black calot trimmed with a silk ruffle that spanned the side and back of the hat. Duchess of Castro, December 12, 2014 | Royal Hats

I think that includes all the royals who attended this event (please let me know if I missed anyone). The hats were all rather simple, but simple elegance is exactly what was required. Did any of these royal hats stand out to you today?

Photos from Vincent Kalut, Patrick van Katwijk, Patrick van Katwijk, Patrick van Katwijk, Patrick van KatwijkPatrick van Katwijk, Patrick van Katwijk, Patrick van KatwijkPatrick van KatwijkPatrick van Katwijk, Didier LebrunPatrick van Katwijk, and Albert Nieboer, all via Corbis