to this day in 1984 when Queen Elizabeth wore a beautifully stitched teal blue tam ‘o shanter hat with ostrich feather trim by Simone Mirman while on a state visit to Jordan. Queen Noor’s black and white floral turban made and equally strong millinery style statement.
Princess Cristina wore a heather purple felt brimmed hat trimmed with feathers in purple and dark grey. I’m still at odds about the feather placement- on one hand, it’s terribly messy but on the other, I like its exuberance and admire how the two shades link with her dark blue velvet and purple silk coat… a rather bulky item (it looked like a blanket) that hasn’t aged well. When a hat makes a coat look better, that can only be a good thing.
Queen Anne-Marie of Greece topped her textured red coat with a matching hat. In a modified top hat shape, the felt design features a tall, flared crown with domed top, upturned rolled brim with downsweep on one side, a layered red felt hatband and brown mink pompoms. The mink trim links well with the mink trim on Anne-Marie’s coat without being overly matchy and those pompoms are whimsical and fun. This hat’s unique shape is very much of its time but I always thought it was a bold and brave choice for her.
Princess Marie-Chantal followed the same formula as Grand Duchess Maria Teresa, topping her richly patterned brocade coat with a tall brown fur Cossack style hat. Unfortunately, the hat’s large scale completely overwhelmed her and I’m still trying to see how it relates to the red, magenta and gold printed coat (which it’s own, is gorgeous!).
Queen Noor of Jordan wore an embroidered headscarf in white, an interesting colour choice for a winter event with her baby blue silk tailored suit. She is photographed below by the Prince of Wales who wore his naval uniform and cap. Princess Sarvath, Princess Badiya and Princess Sumaya are also listed on the guest list but I’ve not been able to locate any photographs of them.
The Countess of Wessex wore primarily Philip Treacy millinery hats at the time and chose one in camel felt for this event. The design made its style statement primarily by shape, pairing a deeply pinched, tall stovepipe crown with an offset brim. The hat was minimally embellished with a slim hatband tied in a front bow. It’s another design very much of the time and looking at it now, seemed a little heavy for Sophie’s cream coat and delicately embellished dress.
Prince Albert of Monaco wore military uniform with cap while his elder sister, Princess Caroline of Hanover and Monaco, wore a grey felt cloche with extended brim and wide grey hatband. The hat’s classic shape suited Caroline well although I’m not sure about its pairing with her Chanel dress and coat, pieces that feel like they ought to be paired with something more luxurious and bespoke.
Princess Míriam of Bulgaria topped her pink feathered skirt and fur collared jacket in a what looks like a headpiece of horizontally placed pheasant and pink feathers, placed on the back of her head.
Princess Inaara, wife of the Aga Khan at the time, wore a calot hat in large flowers with petals made of mocha and copper organza, velvet and crin (see closeup here). The mixed textures on the piece gave it some life and while it related well to Inaara’s fur trimmed camel cape, these combined less well with her mushroom grey tweed suit and earthy green blouse. Too many neutrals, I’d say.
Other noteable guests included Nelson Mandela and Graça Machel, who wore a traditional African printed capulana headwrap and UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan and his wife Nane, who wore a brimmed hat in pale pink straw.
Princess Haya topped her black floral dress with an edgy black silk headpiece. Built on a flat base, the design features curling black silk outer petals that layer toward the silk bloom’s center of rolled silk flowers studded with black beads. It’s an interesting design for Haya that reminds me of this similar headpiece she wore, also to Ascot, back in 2016. Sheikh Mohammad, as usual, repeated his black silk top hat.
Designer: unknown Previously Worn: This hat is new
The family celebrated another victory with Sheikha Al Jalila’s horse, Old Persion, winning the King Edward VII Stakes. Jalila collected her winning cup in a bandeau headpiece of layered red straw bow loops in the same vibrant red as her dress. While the young royal shows great maturity and poise, we need to remember she is not yet eleven years old- I thought this headpiece was wonderful on her (she wears the colour red incredibly well, just like her mother!) and hit just the right note between her youth and the formality of this event.
With several horses racing at Royal Ascot this week from their Godolphin stables, it was no surprise to see members of Dubai’s ruling family at the races today. Princess Haya wore a large, invisible cream straw disc hat- invisible, thanks to an oversize silk flower trimming the top and back of the hat. The design is completed with a cream crin brim that falls into a gentle mushroom shape, and cream straw and crin twists at the back.
Designer: Philip Treacy- bespoke version of OC 294 from SS 2017. Roland Mouret ‘Etty’ dress. Previously Worn: This hat is new
In the charming photo above, Princess Haya’s youngest child, Sheikh Zayed Bin Mohammed Al Maktoum, is seen at his Ascot debut. Zayed looked adorably handsome in a black silk top hat. In the lower photo below, he is led by Crown Prince of Dubai, Sheikh Hamdan.
Zayed’s older sister, Sheikha Al Jalila, who first attended Ascot last year, topped her royal blue dress with a lavender irredescent headpiece with star-shaped floral cutouts. The modern piece is a great scale on the young royal and the hue is so pretty against her colouring.
Designer: bespoke Alexandra Harper Millinery Previously Worn: This hat is new
Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, clearly pleased after his horse Blue Point ran to victory in the King’s Stand Stakes with jockey William Buick, repeated his black silk top hat. His young son looks, based on these photos, like he needs some time to fully embrace hat wearing! So sweet.