Remembering King Constantine II

King Constantine II, former King of the Hellenes, died today at a private hospital in Athens at the age of 82.

He was born on June 2,1940 in Athens to Princess Frederica of Hanover and Crown Prince Paul of Greece. After winning a gold medal in sailing at the 1960 Rome Olympics and serving in all three branches of the Hellenic Armed Forces, the hugely popular prince acceded to the throne in 1964 at just 23 years of age. One of the youngest monarchs in recent memory, his nine-year reign coincided with one of the most turbulent periods in Greece’s political history. Forced into exile in 1967 following a military coup, the resulting dictatorship abolished the monarchy in 1973, thereby ending a dynasty begun by Constantine’s Danish-born great-grandfather George I in 1863.

King Constantine lived with his family in a north London suburb for most of his years in exile, returning to Greece for the first time in 1981 for his mother’s funeral. Visits continued and in 2013, he and Queen Anne-Marie returned there permanently. He has close ties to numerous royal houses- his elder sister is Queen Sofia of Spain; his sister-in-law is Queen Margrethe of Denmark; his uncle was Greek-born Prince Philip, the late Duke of Edinburgh; and his cousins included the late King Michael I of Romania, Crown Prince Alexander of Serbia and King Charles III, with whom he shared an especially close relationship. These strong familial ties saw King Constantine and his family often attend British and European royal family events.

King Constantine is survived by his wife, Queen Anne-Marie; five children, Alexia, Pavlos, Nikolaos, Theodora and Philippos; and nine grandchildren.

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Images from Getty as indicated  

This Week’s Extras

Queen Mathilde wore a black lace veil on Wednesday to Pope Benedict’s funeral at the Vatican.
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Princess Kako wore a black silk covered hat yesterday for a memorial on the anniversary of Emperor Showa’s death.

King Carl Gustaf attended a societal security conference today with his trusty brown fedora in tow.
Princess Akiko was in a black hat with vibrant blue hatband today for the Japanese University Rugby Football Championship Final.

 

The following new millinery designs caught my eye this week (see the comments for more):

Milliner Profile: Ahko Hirata

This week, Princess Aiko stepped out in a hat with floral trim. The floral trim was a Goyo azalea, Aiko’s personal emblem, incorporated into the hat’s design by Japanese milliner Ahko Hirata.

Fellow royal follower and expert on the Imperial royal family, Prisma, shared this week that the wonderful waved royal blue hatband Empress Masako wore on November 13 to the National Sea Enrichment Festival in Hyogo was also Ahko Hirata’s design. Hirata also designed the first hat Masako wore as empress on May 4, 2019, a wonderful yellow silk bumper with hatband beaded with a diagonal rising sunbeam motif.

 

Ahko Hirata was not on my radar and should have been- her late father was the first Japanese milliner to train in couture techniques in Paris and was Empress Michiko’s go-to milliner for decades. Ahko’s aesthetic, not surprisingly, is different than her father’s designs, but no less impeccable or memorable. This profile gives a glimpse into her millinery story.

New Year’s Day Races

Mike and Zara Tindall attended New Year’s Day Racing at Cheltenham Racecourse yesterday, accompanied by their two daughters. Zara wore a deep purple trilby with textured hatband and feather trim.

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The hat combines well with collarless coat and streamlined leather belt to create a effortlessly chic look.

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Designer: Somerset Millinery “Clara” design. Coat by The Fold. Styled by Annie Miall. 
Previously Worn: This hat is new.

Mia and Lena Tindall wore embellished headbands. Adorable!

Thoughts about Zara’s new hat?

Images from Getty as indicated  

This Week’s Extras

King Charles and Queen Camilla attended Sunday service today at the Church of St. Mary Magdalene on the Sandringham estate. Camilla repeated a taupe felt beret with double pheasant feather trim.
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Emperor Naruhito, Empress Masako and Princess Aiko visited the Emeritus couple at their Sento Imperial residence  for New Year greetings. Empress Masako repeated a bumper hat covered in blush floral jacquard silk  and Princes Aiko wore an ivory silk brimless hat with braid circling the crown and a petite floral spray on the side.

The following new millinery designs caught my eye recently (see the comments for more):


The Imperial royal women in gowns (but no tiaras this year) for New Year Receptions at the Imperial Palace on January 1.

Emperor Naruhito delivered a traditional New Year’s greeting  on the balcony of the Imperial Palace in Tokyo on January 2, joined by the Imperial royal family.
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Happy New Year to you all!
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Images from social media as indicated