This Week’s Extras

The Duchess of York in a pompom bedecked natural straw hat for today’s daily children’s story, The Wonky Donkey.


Milliner’s Guild USA is hosting a fun Royal Ascot challenge, inviting anyone to recreate one of their favourite Ascot royal fashion looks and share on Instagram. Details are on the example below- if any of you participate, please share with us here, too! You can follow all entries on Milliner’s Guild Instagram here.
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Ready for some fun? As a way to celebrate this year’s Royal Ascot races (which will take place without spectators this year), the @milliners_guild is hosting a Royal photo challenge! Read on for details, then post your pics! #Repost @milliners_guild with @get_repost ・・・ The Milliners Guild is excited to announce the start of our Dressing Royal for Ascot Challenge!👑🏇 This is a chance for everyone to get into the #royalascot spirit and create a royally inspired ensemble in celebration of one of millinery's biggest events. ⬇️ ____________________ 1. Choose a photo of a member of the British Royal Family in which he/she is dressed in formal attire including a hat. 2.It could be a photo from Ascot, a Royal Wedding, a Christening, etc. Extended family such as Zara Phillips and Lady Kitty Spencer count, as do Harry and Meghan, Duke and Duchess of Sussex. 3. Recreate that look as best you can. Be creative with items in your wardrobe and around your home. Bonus points if you have a Corgi.🐶 4.Take a photo. Post the original royal inspiration picture alongside your interpretation picture on your Instagram account, tag us @milliners_guild, and include these hashtags for extra visibility: #millinersguildchallenge #dressingroyal #replikate 5. The challenge will run from now until the end of Royal Ascot in June and we will share your looks on our page and in our stories. This is not a competition. Full challenge details are listed on our website, follow the link in our bio. We can't wait to see what you come up with!!! Pictured is HRH Princess Beatrice of York and the royally inspired look from @millistarr ___________________________ #royalascot #ascot #katemiddleton #duchessofsussex #duchessofcambridge #meghanmarkle #royalwedding #houseofwindsor #royalstyle #princessdiana #hatlover #millinery #hats #instachallenge

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The following new millinery designs caught my eye this week:
Continuing this week’s hat’s with sparkle, this deep purple silk velvet pillbox hat studded with  iridescent cabouchon stones from British milliner Dillon Wallwork.
Headpiece of vibrant rainbow-hued interlocking crin rings by American milliner Amy Fowler
Royal blue straw crown boater with leopard print brim by French milliner Béatrice de Beauvoir
Statement saucer in layered sapphire and coral straw by British brand Lillibets Millinery
Wearable slate blue straw braid capulet with woven hatband by German brand Hutmanufaktur
Warm brown straw Dior brim with deep pink silk abaca swoosh by Dutch millinerMyra van de Korput
Ombre pink straw & lace percher with sinamay leaves and leather flowers by Aussie brand Ebbella Millinery

Amazing heapiece of blue feathers weightlessly floating over a blue silk organza petal bandea, made by New Zealand milliner Anel Heyman
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Day 30 - Ice Queen, SS2017 #ahataday4may #millineryinfo

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Winter white felt cloche with freestyle side pleat by Australian milliner Christine Waring
Beautiful movement on this navy straw pleated brim design by London-based brand John Boyd Milliner
Adorable floral headpiece made entirely of recycled denim by British brand Angharad Rose Millinery
Prettiest vintage Japanese quilted silk saucer with cherry blossoms by Australian milliner Victoria Henderson

And finally, this fantastic purple faded sinamay wide brimmed hat with sweeping, wonderfully smooth lines by Dutch
milliner Myra van de Korput

Greetings from Princess Theodora this week on the day that her wedding was scheduled (Princess Beatrice’s wedding, as many recall, was also scheduled this week.
We started this post with a story- why not close with one as well? Here is a lovely excerpt of the Duchess of Cornwall reading from Roald Dahl’s  James and the Giant Peach.

Photos from social media as indicated

Top Royal Hats: May 2019

Despite stiff competition, two very clear winners (both in pale shades of pink!) have emerged in the races for favourite new design and favourite repeated hat worn back in May:


Countess of Wessex’s blush pink straw disc hat with black windowpane crin by Jane Taylor worn May 21



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Sarah, Duchess of York’s pink layered disc with pheasant feathers by Jess Collett worn May 18 

Jump over to the poll for favourite new hat here and the repeated hat poll here to see the results in greater detail.  
Photos from Getty as indicated

Catching Up With The British Royals

With nine British royal hats appearing at semi-public events this week, I thought we’d take a dedicated look at these designs to kick off this holiday weekend (our regular weekend “Extra’s” post will follow tomorrow). Last Sunday, Queen Elizabeth was spotted en route to Sunday service at Crathie Kirk in Scotland in a new hat. UPDATE- thanks to you super sleuths, we know know this hat is a repeat and more than a decade old!

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In bright pink straw, the design’s sidesweeping brim is edged in a wide binding stripe in robin’s egg blue, which is repeated on the straw twist and burnt feathers of its trim. While the colour makes a fun statement (especially with such an unexpected colour pairing!), I’m not keen on the hat’s flared crown, which gives it a slightly cartoonish vibe from front view.

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Designer: unknown. Based on dates, I strongly suspect Philip Somerville
Previously Worn: November 24, 2007
The Duchess of Cornwall repeated her red felt Philip Treacy beret with pheasant feather trim. Camilla has worn this hat exclusively in Scotland (mainly for private events such as this) which is a shame, as the pop of colour is great on her!
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The Duchess of Cambridge repeated a navy saucer shaped percher hat with large center knot felt flower on the back.
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Designer: Lock and Co. 
Previously Worn: Aug 26, 2018; Feb 7, 2016March 26, 2015 (private event)
The Countess of Wessex repeated a camel felt fedora with overlapping pheasant feather hatband. Sophie wears fedora and trilby shapes well and the hatband on this casual design is such a great touch.
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Designer:  Suffolk Fedora in Camel from Hicks & Brown
Previously Worn: Dec 23, 2018; May 14, 2018
Princess Anne wore a hat that, I think, is a new design, likely from Amy Morris-Adams. In warm camel felt, this trilby features an extended brim that raises, in classic trilby fashion around the back, and is trimmed simply with what looks like a two-tone hatband in gold and chocolate, tied in a side bow. It’s a similar design to the turquoise and purple hats she added to her millinery wardrobe over the past year, although not as interesting a colour.

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Designer: unknown
Previously Worn: I believe this is new

Autumn Phillips rounded last Sunday’s royal attendees at church in a dark caramel felt button percher trimmed with a chocolate organza ruffle around a silk bloom and two striped pheasant feathers. As far as brown hats go, it’s a good one

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Designer: Unknown. It looks like Juliette Botterill to me
Previously Worn: This hat is new

Today, the York Princesses and their mum attended Ellie Goulding’s wedding in Yorkshire. Princess Beatrice topped an irredescent emerald frock with a new black bandeau headpiece in leather, trimmed with handmade flowers and textured leaves. Black leather could be a tricky material to pull off for a royal headpiece but this one’s floral trim beautifully balances its edgy material, creating a smoothly elegant piece in a shape that looks great on Bea.

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Designer: Athena by Justine Bradley-Hill. by Dress by The Vampire’s Wife 
Previously Worn: This headpiece is new

Princess Eugenie repeated her navy straw pillbox with braided perimeter. It remains a great design for her, paired again with a floral frock (I think the open neckline of this dress makes for a better pairing).

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Designer: Juliette Botterill (bespoke version of the “Pleated Pillbox” from SS 2018). Dress by Peter Pilotto
Previously Worn: Apr 18, 2019

The Duchess of York topped a lace coat with a straw bumper hat with outside edge wrapped on two layers of Lady Amherst feathers. The hat’s shape, which looks like a bandeau from front view,  suits Sarah well and the classic black and white scheme is a tad more wearable than this similar design!

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Designer: Jess Collett
Previously Worn: This hat is new

Thoughts about these British royal hats?

Photos from Getty as indicated 

This Week’s Extras

Here are some of the royal hats we missed during Ascot- we’ll look at the hats worn today for National Day in Luxembourg in a separate post, later tomorrow.

Last Sunday, Queen Margrethe attended a church service in Tallin, Estonia, in the jaunty boater hat with navy textured fabric crown and cream straw brim by Mathilde Thoe Førster she debuted last month. Love the jaunty angle!
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Efter Valdemar Sejrs erobring af det nuværende Tallinn i 1219 byggede kongens mænd en trækirke i byen på Toompeahøjen. Ti år senere erstattede danske munke fra Ribe kirken med en mere robust bygning i sten, som i dag er Tallinns Domkirke. Det var således 800-året for Domkirkens oprindelse, der i dag blev fejret med en festgudstjeneste, hvor H.M. Dronningen var til stede. Gudstjenesten var i dagens anledning både på dansk og estisk, ligesom Det Danske Drengekor og Københavns Kantatekor sang salmer undervejs. For nogle uger siden skænkede Danmarkssamfundet et dannebrogsflag til Domkirken, som får en permanent placering i kirkerummet. Inden dagens gudstjeneste afslørede Dronningen en mindeplade i kirken for Dronningens deltagelse i festgudstjenesten. 📸 Keld Navntoft, Ritzau Scanpix ©️

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On Monday, June 17, Emperor Naruhito and Empress Masako attended the 109th Japan Academy Prize ceremony in Taito. Empress Masako wore a white hat with short brim and wide hatband embellished with the same decorative braid as is on the lapels of her matching jacket. Interestingly, the hatband has been turned upside down since its last outing. The Akishino family joined the emperor and empress to host a tea party at the Imperial Palace for prize winners. Crown Princess Kiko and Princess Mako repeated aqua and white bumper hats while and Princess Kako repeated a blue silk covered bowler with bow on the side


On Wednesday (the day after her spectacular debut at Ascot), Queen Máxima officially opened the renovated Military Hospital in Utrecht. She repeated her raspberry straw picture hat with mushroom brim by Fabienne Delvigne.
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Queen Margrethe in a white floppy sun hat on Wednesday to watch the Danish army’s 2nd brigade in Oksbøl go through exercises before the departing to Iraq.
The Duchess of York in a colorful, feathered Jess Collett bandeau while in Italy this week
Princess Hisako attended the Japanese National Wheelchair Twin Basketball Championship yesterday in a repeated cafe au laid hued straw hat with triple layered, twisted hatband
Queen Elizabeth attended The Royal Windsor Cup Final at Guards Polo Club today in a repeated magenta hat by Angela Kelly, made by Stella McLaren.
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It’s already Monday in Japan- on this day, Emperor Naruhito and Empress Masako attend the Japan Art Academy award ceremony in Tokyo. The Empress is looking so polished these days- today she topped a beautifully tailored ice blue suit with a matching short brimmed hat with multi layered silk organza hatband.
We saw a number rather unattractive and unflattering felt top hats at Royal Ascot this week. Since the silk used to make the gleaming antique top hats we all admire (thanks ChicagoChuck!) is no longer produced, what do you think of Stephen Jones’ summery, sustainable and smartly stylish alternative in straw?! This is a hat that greatly intrigues me.

Photos from Getty and social media as indicated

Royal Ascot Day 4: The Yorks

Royal Hats

I’m so fortunate to be joined today by Lauren Ritchie, creator of Melbourne-based Lauren J. Ritchie Millinery, to chat about today’s royal hats at Ascot!  

The Duchess of York topped a sunshine yellow dress with a teal velvet headpiece trimmed with peacock feathers and finely dotted net veil. The milliner notes that the hat is partially upcycled from a vintage piece.

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Lauren Ritchie: Jess Collett has made some wonderful pieces for the Duchess of York! 

Royal Hats:  I’m really liking their ongoing collaboration. It has really elevated Sarah’s hats!

Lauren Ritchie: I really enjoy the combination of the radiant yellow and jade peacock but would have put her in the same coloured shoes instead of the purple. The green accessories of bag, clutch and gloves are a well considered combination.

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Lauren Ritchie: I’m unsure of how this hat was designed to be worn. My first reaction is I would like to pull it firmly down over her right eye, moving the plumes to be more central on her head to add height but then looking from other angles,  the hat also looks somewhat turban-like but moved forward on the head, treated more like a button. It is a playful combination of styles.  

Royal Hats: I think different placement on the head would help! The colour blocking is fun and Sarah wears green SO well. The headpiece base has an interesting shape that I like- it’s open without he doughnut look of a completely open circle. I’m just not sure about the styling here- does the velvet  headpiece and purse work with the light, sunny, summer dress? I don’t know.

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Royal Hats: I’m intrigued by this shape, Lauren- how would you go about blocking an interwoven piece like this? What finishing challenges does a shape like this bring?

Lauren Ritchie: For a piece constructed in this way, all of the finishing would need to occur underneath.  It is a bit of an illusion-  it could be two pieces that are constructed in full, finished parts and then interlocked together to form the final shape or it could be a pillbox shape that has been cut into and wrapped around itself. Either way, the base material would need to be very sturdy to support the weight of this material. 

Royal Hats: Thanks, Lauren. Your explanation is helping me realize how impeccably it is constructed. I can’t remember other royal hats that have included upcycled parts from a vintage hat and this is wonderful to see here. I’d love to see more upcycled and recycled royal hats!

Designer: Jess Collett
Previously Worn: This hat is new

The Duke of York again looked dapper in his elegant black antique silk top hat.

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What do you think of the Duchess’ hat today?

Photos from Getty as indicated