Favourite New Royal Hat of 2019

2019 saw some truly wonderful hats introduced into royal fashion- hats that awed, inspired and took our breath away. Throughout the year, dearest readers, you have narrowed down your favourite new hats and to a finalist list of nine standout and very beautiful designs. Here are your Favourite New Royal Hats of 2019:

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Queen Máxima’s tawny pink straw saucer covered in pearl-centered feather flowers by Berry Rutjes worn for her Royal Ascot debut on June 18

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Autumn Phillips’ sage green felt beret percher with flying bow and cut feather leaves by Sally Ann Provan, styled by Annie Miall, worn on September 9 to the Braemar Games

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Autumn Phillips’ lattice straw saucer with large silk roses and feathers by Sally Ann Provan.styled by Annie Miall,
 worn to Ascot on June 22

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The Duchess of Cornwall’s black rounded brimless hat wrapped in feathers by Philip Treacy worn on November 10 for Remembrance Sunday

Zara Tindall’s plum felt teardrop percher with quill and mass of cut burgundy and violet feathers by Juliette Botterill worn to the Cheltenham Festival on March 13
Sincere congratulations to British milliner Juliette Botterill, who claims ‘top spot’ for the first time with this beautiful hat, and to stylist Annie Miall who put this (and Autumn Phillip’s two looks) together. It is the first percher design to be chosen as your favourite new hat of the year, which is fun to see. Congratulations also to Sally Ann Provan, Berry Rutjes and Philip Treacy- you all are bringing colour and beauty into our world through your designs. We need this and we sincerely thank you for it.  
Jump over to this post to see the results in greater detail. So, dearest readers- what do you think of this parade of top royal hats?!
Photos from Andrew Matthews/PA Images via Getty Images; and Getty as indicated

Cheltenham Festival 2020 Day 2

On Wednesday, the second day of the Cheltenham Festival was attended by the Duchess of Cornwall, Princess Annd and Zara Tindall. The Duchess of Cornwall surprised in a new charcoal felt wide brimmed fedora hat trimmed with a deep chocolaty-maroon hatband with fringed side bow, anchored with the milliner’s insignia.

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This is the first fedora we’ve seen on Camilla and it’s a treat! The scale suits her extremely well, the wide brim giving her that sense of millinery presence and gravitas that we so associate with her. The hat’s classic shape with subtle curves and restrained trim make for a much more streamlined and chic millinery look than we usually see on Camilla- one she carries very well.

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Designer: Philip Treacy. It appears to be a custom version of D26 from AW 2019
Previously Worn: This hat is new

Princess Anne repeated her fuzzy warm brown felt trilby with extended brim, slim darker brown hatband and spray of feathers on the side,

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Designer: unknown
Previously Worn: Sep 1, 2019

Zara Tindall topped her grey and cream houndstooth coat with a contrascting percher hat in burgundy felt. The hat’s base follows an upturned curve around the raised top and is trimmed with a cutout vertical bow and pair of arrow trimmed feathers.

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The pairing of this hat and coat (and burgundy purse and shoes) elevates both pieces, the colour contrast giving the overall look vibrancy and balance. The cutout rectangles on the hat’s bow give some wonderful texture to the piece without making it fussy, making me wonder why we don’t see more cutouts on felt hats?! It’s another strong look for Zara (and for her stylist!).

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Designer: Juliette Botterill. It is the bespoke Bow Percher (likely from AW 2020). Coat by Laura Green London. Styled by Annie Miall. 
Previously Worn: This hat is new

What do you think of this trio of hats?

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Photos from Getty as indicated 

Commonwealth Day Service 2020

Queen Elizabeth was joined by members of her family yesterday morning at Westminster Abbey for the annual Commonwealth Day Service.

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For this event, the Queen repeated her blue felt hat with stepped crown and upswept brim trimmed with a multi-looped felt bow and spray of blue and copper feathers. Yesterday’s photos provide a closer look at the detail on this piece than we’ve seen before- the looped bow is beautifully piped in the same woven grey fabric as is on the upper side of the brim and the width of top stitching on the matching coat’s collar is exactly the same as the width of the brim binding. Such details seem minor but add significantly to the overall look a hat. Now, if only we could peek at this ensemble’s silk dress and see how those copper feathers fit into the overall picture!

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Designer: Rachel Trevor Morgan. Coat by Stewart Parvin.
Previously Worn: Oct 20, 2018; Nov 16, 2017

The Duchess of Cornwall repeated her  navy brushed felt hat with off-center peaked crown, wide brim with gently sweeping upturn on one side and dramatic navy ostrich feather wrapped around the crown. The hat has a decidedly painterly quality to it, thanks to the deep hue of the felt and its sumptuous feather trim. It pairs so well with Camilla’s navy silk coat, the coat’s lace trimmed bottom half balancing beautifully with the hat’s equally luxurious texture.

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Designer: Philip Treacy. Coat by Bruce Oldfield
Previously Worn: Dec 11, 2019

The Duchess of Cambridge wore a new saucer hat in scarlet peachbloom felt. The hat is trimmed with a circle of piping around the crown and leaves in a darker oxblood felt and a trio of scarlet silk camellia flowers above and on the underside of the raised brim.

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Head to toe looks in a single colour can easily look one-note but the mix of textures and shades of red give enough contrast to make this look work. The hat plays particularly well with the coat’s velvet accents, the oxblood trim fitting surprisingly well with the darker velvet shadows and the hat’s trim hitting just the right balance, neither too stark nor too cluttered, against the traditional lines of the coat. The saturated colour makes this a strong look for Kate, again, that is balanced by the hat’s smaller scale. There’s so much here that just works.

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Designer: Sally Ann Provan. It is the Sada design from AW 2019. Coat by Catherine Walker
Previously Worn: This hat is new

The Duchess of Sussex wore a new hat for this, her final official royal engagement. A felt beret percher in the same emerald green as her dress, the hat’s dramatic statement comes from it’s net veil trim, wrapped in two linear stripes around the round base and tied on the side in an exuberant bow.

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Throughout her royal life, Meghan has worn hats only in neutral shades- ivory, blush, olive, navy, brown and black. This design is the first one in a vibrant colour… I won’t read into the symbolism of this beyond saying how fantastic it is. The use of square dotted net veil as the hat’s only trim is a bold one that gives such wonderful texture and movement to the design. High necked frocks such as this can be tough to style with a hat and this percher hits just the right balance and proportion. While I wish the Sussexes much happiness in the life they are creating for themselves, I can’t help but mourn the fashion moments we’ll miss with them outside the royal realm.

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Designer: William Chambers. It is a bespoke version of the Veiled Teardrop Explosion from SS 2020. Dress by Emilia Wickstead.
Previously Worn: This hat is new

The Countess of Wessex also wore a new pillbox hat in navy felt. With a slightly domed crown, the design is completed with a generous wrap of navy dotted net veil.

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While navy and cream is a classic combination, this ensemble is decidedly more sleek and modern. This pillbox’s veil trim gives it an air of effortlessness that pairs wonderfully with the sleek lines of Sophie’s dress and again, the hat’s scale works wonderfully with the high neck on the dress. It’s an ensemble that works better together than its components do on their own and I love how the classic pieces are interpreted in a way that is so modern and fresh. Sophie has several dark blue pillbox hats in her wardrobe but I think this addition might be my favourite.

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Designer: Jane Taylor. Dress by Suzannah
Previously Worn: This hat is new

This event always brings us several hats and after several weeks where royal hat sightings have been sparse, this group is particularly welcome. What do you think of these hats in London yesterday?

Photos from Getty as indicated 

Auschwitz Liberation Commemoration

Numerous heads of state gathered in Auschwitz, Poland yesterday to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Nazi concentration camp, Auschwitz

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Queen Mathilde repeated a black felt fedora variation with relaxed brim, trimmed with a felt hatband tied in a side bow.

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Designer: Fabienne Delvigne
Previously Worn: November 11, 2018

Queen Máxima wore an black felt formed beret trimmed with a scrolled frog braid. The elegantly restrained design felt particularly fitting for this event. King Willem-Alexander wore a traditional Jewish kippah in gold embroidered blue velvet.

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Designer: Philip Treacy. It is OC 665 from AW 2019
Previously Worn: This hat is new

Queen Letizia wore a bandeau headpiece in black velvet.

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Designer: unknown
Previously Worn: This headpiece is new

The Duchess of Cornwall repeated her black wool hat with ruched crown and faux-fur cuffed brim.

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On Monday, The Duchess of Cornwall attended commemorations to mark the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau, the largest of the Nazi concentration and death camps in Krakow, Poland 🇵🇱. The Duchess led the UK delegation joining world leaders and more than 200 Holocaust survivors who returned to Auschwitz to mark 75 years since the Nazi death camp was liberated by the Soviet Army. Survivors and dignitaries laid candles to pay their respects to the victims and The Duchess also had the chance to meet Holocaust survivors and talk to them during her visit. 📷: PA #princecharles #princeofwales #camilladuchessofcornwall #duchessofcornwall #princeandprincessofwales #dukeandduchessofcornwall #holocaustmemorialday #auschwitzbirkenau

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Designer: Lock and Co. “Natalia” design in black
Previously Worn: Dec 14, 2017; Mar 18, 2017; Feb 27, 2017;  Dec 16, 2017;  Nov 28, 2016Mar 16, 2016Mar 18, 2015; Mar 13, 2015Dec 10, 2013Feb 7, 2012;  Feb 6, 2012Jan 27, 2012

At such sobering events, fashion feels trivial and irrelevant and I struggled over covering this event. The only thing I want to say is that these four, restrained hats each feels a fitting choice for a memorial like this where the story really should not be about a hat.

Photos from Getty as indicated 

Trio of British Royals Attend Sunday Church

Queen Elizabeth attended Sunday service yesterday morning at St Mary Magdalene Church in Sandringham, Norfolk. For this outing, she repeated her deep purple felt hat with split crown and upturned kettle brim trimmed with a felt bow and trio of pompoms.

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Designer: Angela Kelly made by Stella McLaren
Previously Worn: Nov 6, 2019; April 12, 2018;  February 2, 2018

The Queen was joined by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, several of the Cambridge’s friends (Lucy Lanigan-O’Keeffe’s teal felt hat by Jane Taylor is a beauty) and the Duchess’ parents. Kate wore a new fedora in deep  blue felt trimmed with a hatband of pheasant feathers. Many of you will recognize it as the blue version of a hat worn frequently by the Countess of Wessex– a hat of excellent proportion, shape and trim that packs a great punch in this more saturated colour. Kate looks fantastic in blue and this hat pairs particularly well with her dark blue and orange wool coat.

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Designer: Hicks and Brown’s Suffolk Fedora in Navy. Coat by Roksanda
Previously Worn: this hat is new

Carole Middleton topped her tweed coat with what looks like Lecorine’s “Sumac” bumper hat in chocolate alpaca fur– a hat also owned by both of her daughters (see Kate’s version here and Pippa’s version here)

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Carole And Michael were here too #carolemiddleton

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The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall were in Scotland and attended Crathie Kirk, near Balmoral, the Duchess in one of her faux fur brimmed tweed hats  (I think it was this one) from Lock and Co.

The standout hat for me in this trio is Kate’s new blue fedora- what are your thoughts?

Photos from Getty and social media as indicated 

British Royals Celebrate Christmas- Part I

Members of the British Royal Family joined the Queen today, as they do each year, for Christmas Day Service at the Church of St. Mary Magdalene near Sandringham.

The Queen wore a new ensemble today in brilliant red, topped with a felt hat . The teardrop shape of this hat’s crown is one we’ve seen on previous hats; the design is completed with a side spray of black feathers and hatband of the same fine braid as is trimming her coat. .

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Several readers guessed the queen would be in red this year and you were spot on! The look is festive and the coat’s open collar, edged with that lovely braid, frames the hat and Her Majesty’s face really well. What’s less successful for me is the crown shape- its height and flared silhouette creates an awkward proportion that feels a bit clunky. While the colour is great, I’m not sure the shape flatters.

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Designer: Angela Kelly made by Stella McLaren
Previously Worn: This hat is new

The Duchess of Cornwall repeated her royal purple felt brimless hat in a gently rounded helmet shape, trimmed with a large spray of  purple goose biot feathers. It’s a bold shape that she carries off well despite it’s clunky (again!) mushroom shape – the colour is divine, the spiky feathers play down the helmet vibe well and Camilla’s soft hairstyle lightens the look. The modern hat pairs really well with Camilla’s traditionally cut velvet coat, the two pieces combining to create a rather regal statement.

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Designer: Philip Treacy Bruce Oldfield dress and coat.
Previously Worn: March 11, 2019

The Duchess of Cambridge repeated her dark green percher saucer hat trimmed with large, pleated flower on the back raised side of the design.

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Today is the first time we’ve seen this hat not worn with a green coat and despite its small scale, holds its own. The styling here, coordinated with a purse and shoes in the same colour against the neutral coat, allows the hat to stand out more than we’ve seen it before. Coordinating Charlotte’s green coat makes a particularly sweet connection.

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Designer: Silvia Fletcher for Lock and Co. Coat by Catherine Walker. 
Previously Worn: Mar 17, 2017Dec 25, 2015

Princess Beatrice, who was joined for the first time by her fiance Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi, wore a bandeau in forest green peachbloom felt accented with a beautiful pleated swirl motif. The design is a beautiful colour on her and the pleated detail gives such interest to the piece, making it much more special than a simple bandeau.

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Designer: Juliette Botterill. It is the Knotted Felt Band from AW 2019. Coat by The Fold London
Previously Worn: This headpiece is new

Princess Eugenie wore a navy blue headpiece described by the designer as a “silk covered headband, adorned with cut feathers and a silk bow.” The colour is lovely on her and the layered cut feathers give some beautiful dimension, height and movement to the design.

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Designer: Juliette Botterill. It is the Silk Feather Bow Band from AW 2019
Previously Worn: This headpiece is new

It’s a lovely parade of jewel-toned designs so far (we’ll look at remaining hats worn by the Wessex ladies, Princess Anne, the Countess of Snowdon and Lady Sarah Chatto tomorrow). For now, what are your thoughts on these first five designs? Enjoy the Queen’s Christmas message below.

Photos from Getty as indicated 

British Royals Attend Memorial At Westminster Abbey

The Prince of Wales, Duchess of Cornwall, Duke of Cambridge, Earl and Countess of Wessex, Vice Admiral Sir Timothy Laurence and Prince Michael of Kent attended a service of thanksgiving today at Westminster Abbey, celebrating the life of Sir Donald Gosling. The Duchess of Cornwall wore a new hat for the occasion, a wide brimmed design in navy brushed felt with off-center peaked crown and gently sweeping upturn on one side. The hat is simply, but dramatically, trimmed with a wide navy ostrich feather wrapped around the crown.

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While it’s a millinery look we’ve seen on Camilla many times before, I think this design is elevated by the rich, deep nape of the felt (velour felt, I’m guessing), its wonderfully saturated hue and THAT feather, which has luxurious texture of its own.

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Designer: Philip Treacy
Previously Worn: This hat is new

For this memorial, the Countess repeated an impeccably made bumper-edged pillbox hat covered in dark blue crepe and trimmed with a net veil.

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The colour and silhouette is lovely on Sophie and I like how she’s placed the veil a little higher around the center of her face than on its last outing. We don’t talk enough about how jewelry can set off a hat, as these angular amber earrings do here, their strong and sleek lines working so well against similar ones on the hat. It’s a strong, bold that still fits this reflective memorial occasion and Sophie wears it so well.

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Designer: Jane Taylor
Previously Worn: June 20, 2019

What do you think of this hat today, on its second outing?

Photos from Getty as indicated