Order Of The Garter 2019

Founded by Edward III in 1348, The Order of the Garter is the senior and oldest British Order of Chivalry awarded at the Sovereign’s pleasure as a personal gift. Twenty four recipients of the order, known each as a Knight or Lady,  meet each year for a grand ceremony held int St. George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle on the Monday before Royal Ascot begins.

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Members of the Garter wear elaborate robes and accessories for the Garter Service including a special hat. The hat, in the style of a Tudor bonnet, is made of black velvet with a voluminous, unstructured crown and flat brim. It is trimmed with the order insignia, white ostrich and black heron feathers, and slim cord wrapped around the base of the crown that extends to a pair of gold and royal blue tassels hanging down the side. British royal family members belonging to the order include Queen Elizabeth, who is Sovereign of the Garter, The Prince of Wales, Duke of Cambridge, Duke of York, Earl of Wessex, Princess Royal, Duke of Gloucester, Duke of Kent and Princess Alexandra. The Duke of Edinburgh, who is also a member, did not attend the service today.

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King Willem Alexander of the Netherlands and King Philippe of Spain were appointed as Supernumerary Knights of the Garter during state visits to the UK in 2018 and 2017; their attendance at today’s ceremony saw them officially installed in these roles and they wore the full garter regalia.

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Queen Máxima wore a tall, verical saucer hat in dusky pink straw trimmed with a mass of silk flowers and curling pheasant feathers on the underside of the raised brim.

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It’s a great look for the Dutch Queen. I really the slightly darker shade of pink on the hat and adore how its lines and lush trimming play so well off Máxima’s sleek caped coat dress- the pairing of the two items is fantastic. I’d like, however to change two things about the hat- first is the angle of placement on the head (tilt the top edge down a bit so it sweeps slightly more diagonally that so vertical) and the second is to tidy up the brim binding edge. Tweak these two things and a great hat would become a complete knockout.

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Designer: unconfirmed. My guess is Fabienne Delvigne. Dress by Claes Iversen.
Previously Worn: This hat is new. Some suggest it is a reworked version of this Prinsjesdag hat but the straw bases are different shapes and colours.

Queen Letizia wore a kokoshnik-style bandeau headpiece in formed black straw, trimmed with black feathers and veil. It’s the first headpiece in this style we’ve seen on the Spanish queen and it suits her petite frame so well (not leaving the hat looking like it’s wearing her, as unfortunately is often the case). With her black and white printed dress, the headpiece tops an elegant ensemble that’s fantastic on Letizia.

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Designer: It is the “Black Peony” design from Spanish brand Cherubina
Previously Worn: this headpiece is new

The Duchess of Cornwall repeated a hat in almond straw with off-center, peaked crown and side sweeping brim. A beaded straw hatband and side twists studded with ecru silk flowers complete the design. The beaded embellishment on the hatband and side twists add a subtle but welcome bit of sparkle to the design and while the colour is quiet, the scale and style make a great signature look for Camilla.

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Designer: Philip Treacy
Previously Worn: June 19, 2018

The Duchess of Cambridge repeated a black sinamay hat with upturned flyaway brim in windowpane lattice straw, trimmed with a curled black an ostrich feather. The brim shape on this piece gives the design a wonderfully light and airy feel and the hat was beautifully paired with Kate’s white coat dress with black trim.

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Designer: Silvia Fletcher for Lock & Co. It is the Lion Tamer design. Coat dress by Catherine Walker.
Previously Worn: July 1, 2016June 11, 2011

The Countess of Wessex repeated her natural straw saucer hat with lattice open woven brim  trimmed with a large coral feathers and tan twists. The hat’s shape, reminiscent of Dior hats in the 1950s, pairs so well with her full skirted ensemble. Bright coral is not an easy hue to wear and this ensemble is beautifully balanced between the vibrant skirt and the hat’s feathers.

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Designer: Jane Taylor
Previously Worn: May 15, 2018 (it was also your favourite repeated royal hat in 2018!);  Oct 5, 2017June 20, 2017 i

The Duchess of Gloucester repeated her slate grey straw veiled pillbox hat. It’s a quietly classic design we’ve seen on Brigitte more than a few times but one she wears well.

Designer: unknown
Previously Worn: June 18, 2018May 19, 2018Jun 17, 2017Jun 1, 2017Jul 1, 2016Jun 12, 2016Jun 10, 2016

Zenouska Mowatt, on the far left below, topped her blue and yellow patterned dress with a navy straw bandeau. The bandeau’s wide curving base is trimmed with silk flowers and leaves on the right side.

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Designer: I suspect it’s the “Catherine in Midnight‘ by Laura Cathcart
Previously Worn: this headpiece is new

The Order of the Garter service this year brought us a wonderful parade of hats to kick off Ascot week with a fanfare. What do you think of these hats in Windsor today? Which designs stand out most to you?

Photos from Getty as indicated 

Trooping The Colour 2019

Queen Elizabeth’s birthday was officially celebrated today with the Trooping the Colour ceremony performed on Horse Guards Parade by St. James’s Park. A tradition of British infantry regiments since the 17th century, the event is a colourful military spectacle.

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For this year’s birthday celebration, Queen Elizabeth repeated her ecru, pink and pale blue woven silk wool coat and hat. The modified cloche shape of the hat features a steeply sloped crown and is trimmed with beautifully detailed wired sequin flower trim.

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I was surprised to see this hat today- the Queen usually chooses less work ensembles for this event in bright colours that make her stand out in the sea of red uniforms. The gentle colour variation in the weave of the fabric on this hat is beautiful, as are the sequin flowers that embellish it but both of these are lost at distant view, which is a bit disappointing for an event like this.

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Designer: Angela Kelly made by Stella McLaren
Previously Worn:  Mar 17, 2019; Aug 19, 2018; May 9, 2017;  Feb 28, 2017Sep 11, 2016Sep 6, 2015May 20, 2015Dec 30, 2014Apr 30, 2013

As in years past, members of the royal family holding the rank of Colonel in various regiments rode along in the military parade with distinctive plumes in each of their bearskin hats to signify their respective regiments:

Striped green and white plume of the Welsh Guards for the Prince of Wales

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St. Patrick’s blue plume of the Irish Guards for the Duke of Cambridge

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White plume of the Grenadier Guards for the Duke of York, whose regiment’s colours were trooped this year.

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The Princess Royal in the wonderful red plumed bicorne hat of Colonel of the Blues and Royals.

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Remaining members of the British royal family also took part, some travelling to Horse Guards Parade by carriage or motor coach and others joining on the balcony of Buckingham Palace to greet waiting crowds and watch a military flypast. We’ll look at these hats, next.
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Yorks Cheer As Duke Leads Colonel’s Review

The Colonel’s Review (the second rehearsal for Trooping the Colour) took place yesterday with the Duke of York as the Inspecting Officer in his role as Colonel . His regiment is marked by the white plume in his bearskin hat.

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The Duke’s family was there to cheer him on. Princess Beatrice wore a black button percher hat trimmed with a contoured straw brim, topped with silk lining, that wraps around the hat in a double crescent with one point curling around the back. It’s a modern, dynamic piece that’s unlike anything we’ve seen Beatrice wear and I’m definitely a fan.

Designer: Annabel Allen Millinery. It is the “Eve” design.
Previously Worn: This hat is new

Princess Eugenie topped her yellow lace dress with a pink knotted bandeau headpiece described by the designer as “made in a lovely pink tweed from Liton Tweeds, with a pink spot veiling.” As far as bandeaux go, this one is good- the knot gives it some height and the mix of tweed and dotted veil gives great texture. I’m just not keen on the pairing of pink tweed headpiece and yellow lace dress.

Designer: Fernanda Lewis. It is the “Veiled Knot in Pink Tweed
Previously Worn: This hat is new

Sarah, Duchess of York, repeated black felt calot trimmed with a rolld bow and open-weave veil.

Designer: unknown
Previously Worn: July 29, 2017; June 7, 2017; July 23, 2016; January 9, 2007; and this undated occasion

We don’t often see the entire York family attend an event and with the four of them in hats, well, that’s even more rare. The standout hat for me here is the one worn by Princess Beatrice- what do you think?

Photos from Getty as indicated 

British Royals Attend Garden Party

This afternoon under sunny, blue skies, Queen Elizabeth hosted the second Buckingham Palace garden party of this spring/summer season.

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For this event, she repeated her pale blue straw hat with tall, slightly flared and sloped crown and flat brim. The hat is beautifully trimmed with a layered silk hatband and handmade silk peonies and rose buds in ombre shades of pink. It’s a lovely hat and the floral motif, both on the hat and on the print of the silk dress, feels right at home at such an event as this.

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Designer: Rachel Trevor Morgan. Coat and dress by Stewart Parvin
Previously Worn: June 20, 2018

The Duke of Cambridge carried his black silk top hat while the Duchess wore a new saucer percher in pale pink straw. The hat is trimmed with a pale pink rose, feather and silk abacca ruffles both on top and below the raised edge of the hat.

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Juliette Botterill’s work is beautiful, as evidenced by this design. The scale is great on Kate and the mix of straw, abacca, silk and feathers on the hat makes it work with the monochrome outfit. It’s a very pretty look for Kate.

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Designer: Juliette Botterill. Coat dress by Alexander McQueen
Previously Worn: This hat is new

The Countess of Wessex repeated the pink straw waved disc hat she debuted last year at Ascot. Bound in a wide stripe of black lattice, the design features a high upsweep at the back, sandwiched in folded ruffles of pink and black lattice crin. I admire the unexpected colour scheme (which looks great on Sophie) and the zip of playfulness the exuberant trim brings to the design. It’s good on many levels and I’m so glad it hasn’t been relegated to the depths of her closet like so many of her other past Ascot hats.

Designer: Jane Taylor. Emilia Wickstead dress 
Previously Worn: June 19, 2018

The Duchess of Gloucester brought back her ecru straw, wide brimmed boater hat with appliqued leaves around the brim (see them in better detail here). It’s a classic, streamlined and elegant design that defies its age and I’m glad to see back in rotation. Brigitte has been reaching into the depths of her millinery closet recently and bringing out some interesting pieces!

Designer: unknown
Previously Worn: June 15, 2011; June 20, 2000 and likely others

Princess Alexandra a picture hat with rounded crown and flat brim in textured natural straw, trimmed with a hatband of silk flowers and a swath of widely woven cream net veil. The quintessential garden hat both coordinates and counterpoints very well with  Alexandra’s patterned Chinoiserie silk jacket and fits right in at a garden party

Designer: unknown
Previously Worn: June 2, 2015; June 20, 2012June 1995

Finally, the Duke of York repeated his black silk top hat while the Duke of Gloucester and Duke of Kent both repeated top hats in dove grey felt (scroll through galleries above and below). While not photographed wearing a hat, it looks like the Earl of Wessex carried his black silk top hat in hand.

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Today, The Queen hosted a Garden Party in the grounds of Buckingham Palace. Each year The Queen hosts parties to welcome around 30,000 guests in recognition of their service to the community. Garden Parties are a way for The Queen to meet people from around the UK and this is the first party Her Majesty is hosting this year. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, The Duke of York and The Earl and Countess of Wessex, The Duke and Duchess of Gloucester, The Duke of Kent and Princess Alexandra also attended the party and spoke to guests enjoying the gardens. Throughout the country, an established network of sponsors is used to invite guests, who include Lord-Lieutenants, Societies and Associations, Government Departments, Local Government, the Services, the Church and other Faiths.

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These garden parties are always great fun- what hats stood out to you most today?

Photos from Getty as indicated 

This Week’s Extras

Just fitting in this post while I step away for a day- I’ll be back to finish coverage of Lady Gabriella Windsor’s wedding tomorrow!

Back on May 4, Prince Mihailo and Princess Ljubica of Serbia christened their daughter Natalija in the church of St. George at Oplenac. Princess Ljubica wore a cream straw disc base percher hat with straw loops and ostrich feathers.
Last Sunday, the Prince of Wales took part in the Cavalry Sunday parade, an annual march and commemorative service held the second Sunday of May by the Combined Cavalry Old Comrades Association in Hyde Park. He sported the traditional black felt bowler hat worn by retired regimental members to this event.
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On Monday, the Earl of Wessex donned a dapper cream straw fedora for The Duke of Edinburgh Gold Awards Presentations in the gardens of Buckingham Palace.
Also on Monday, Princess Hisako wore a cream silk covered bowler trimmed with a modern floral motif and a very interesting, octagon shaped upturned kettle brim for her departure en route to Sweden. I’m not sure I like the brim shape but it’s undisputably unique.
Princess Beatrix celebrated the bicentenary of the Hermien Mill in Harreveld on Friday, repeating her navy straw hat with domed crown wrapped in layers of wide straw ribbon.
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Yesterday, Crown Princess Kiko attended the 30th National Greenery Conservation ceremony in Tottori in a cream hat trimmed with a pale green hatband (not a coincidence, I’m sure!)
The Duke of York was photographed yesterday in more rehearsals for upcoming Trooping the Colour. The Duke was appointed Colonel of Grenadier Guards in 2017 (taking over from the role his father had held since 1975) an will review the troops in this regiment on June 1 to make sure they are in tip top shape for the Queen’s birthday parade on June  15
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Today, Princess Yoko donned a tall, flared pink cloche hat for youth tennis championships in Kashiwa.

This week, I updated the post on all of Queen Máxima’s signature upswept brim ‘slice’ picture hats and was gobsmacked to realize she has 25 (and counting) of this style! Jump to the updated post for a peek.
The following new millinery designs jumped out at me:
Brilliantly practical straw percher with interchangeable trim from British milliner Fernanda Lewis
Two great picture hats (one with lovely ombre ruffle & one with pink perspex bow) by British milliner Ellie Vallerini
Exquisite movement on this crin trimmed black straw beret percher by Scottish milliner Maggie Mowbray
Pale grey saucer with iridescent pinwheel of layered crescent petals from London-based milliner Merve Bayindir
Red button percher with swirling scarlet cherry blossoms by Irish milliner Suzanne Ryan
Bandeau headpieces with colourful, statement-making trims from British milliner Jess Collett
Striking black and white design, amazingly made without a hat block by Australian milliner Louis Macdonald
Lovely colour story on this lilac and peach floral trimmed boater from Irish milliner Carol Kennelly
Stunning midnight blue beaded pillbox percher with flying bow by New Zealand milliner Anel Heyman
Adore the ribbon pinwheel trim on this cream straw trilby from period-inspired British brand Bea & Evie
Fantastic statement star magnolias on this magenta hugger percher by Australian brand Murley and Co.
Pattern! Vibrant floral printed black straw boater with feather trim by Canadian-based brand Jaycow Millinery

 

Princess Märtha Louise was in a lot of headlines this week after announcing a new relationship. Here’s the interview she and her new partner Shaman Derek Verrett conducted to address some of the controversy:
Princess Benedikte’s daughter, Princess Alexandra of Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg, was married to Count Michael Ahlefeld-Laurvig-Bill’s wedding yesterday. Interestingly, she wore a floral tiara from her new husband’s family. Princess Märtha Louise (and Shaman Derek Verrett) were among a handful of family and royal guests.
Wonderful footage of the entire Cambridge family exploring the “Back to Nature” garden the Duchess was part of creating at this year’s Chelsea Flower Show.


And, we wrap up this weekend with a start to the Royal Ascot countdown… it’s just 4 weeks away!

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This Week’s Extras

Have a lovely Sunday- I’ll be back first thing tomorrow for focused coverage and discussion on hats worn for the Romanian national holiday and look at two (one new!) designs worn by Queen Elizabeth over the weekend at the Windsor Horse Show.

On Tuesday, Empress Masako was spotted arriving at the Imperial Palace with the emperor to rehearse their first court ritual which took place on Wednesday. She repeated her unembellished almond bumper hat.
Also on Tuesday, the Duke of York was spotted in uniform as Colonel of the Grenadier Guards (with cap) for the morning’s Changing of the Queen’s Life Guard at Horse Guards riding new Cavalry Black horse ‘Darby’, apparently practicing for the upcoming Trooping the Colour.
On Wednesday, King Carl Gustaf donned his trusty brown fedora for the World Wildlife Fund’s annual meeting, held this year at Huvudskär and Utö in the Stockholm archipelago. The same day, King Harald commemorated Norwegian Armed Forces Day and Liberation Day at Akurshus Fortress, predictably in military uniform with cap.
Infanta Elena donned a neutral straw fedora to watch her daughter, Victoria de Marichalar, open the Seville Fair in a traditional Spanish mantilla with tall peineta comb (see more photos and video here). And 20 years after meeting at this event, the Dutch King and Queen returned this week along with their three daughters… and a quartet of wonderfully vibrant floral headpieces.

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Un día inolvidable.

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On Wednesday, Princess Alexandra visited a life boat station in Shoreham. She repeated her ice blue straw hat with tall crown wrapped in coordinating net tulle, designed by Rachel Trevor Morgan.
Queen Margrethe unveiled a new statue of Denmark’s longest reigning monarch King Christian IV (1577 – 1648) in Copenhagen yesterday. She repeated a hat with ecru straw crown and grey straw double brim for the event.


The following new millinery designs caught my eye this week:
Emerald straw button percher with vibrant ribbon trim and soaring quills by NY milliner Jennifer Hoertz
Pink felt wide brimmed hat with rose gold diamanté hatband from LA based milliner Gladys Tamez
VA VA VOOM red straw percher with the most fantastic curving trim by Australian brand Jill and Jack Millinery
Exquisite curving cream disc with pink handmade blooms and curving quills by Rachel Trevor Morgan
Navy beret percher with hand-beaded bow by Irish milliner Michelle Gleeson
Classic ivory straw picture hat with monochrome leaf printed brim by British milliner Bee Smith
Colourful red and green embroidered lace headpiece from German milliner Nicki Marquardt
Black and white patterned straw pyramid with crin and tassel trim by Italian brand Giulia Mio Millinery

Another interesting article on the Empress of Japan, written by someone with personal connection (The Asahi Shimbun)
King Hamad Of Bahrain and sons Sheikh Nasser and Sheikh Khaled were spotted out for a ride at Windsor Castle in between days spent enjoying the Royal Windsor Horse Show this week
Did you see this delightfully sweet exchange between Queen Elizabeth and former Canadian Prime Minister Jean Chretien on Tuesday?

Princess Margriet presented the Duke of Sussex with an adorable gift during his quick visit to The Hague this week to official launch this year’s Invictus Games, to be held in The Netherlands.

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And finally- the Duke and Duchess of Sussex shared this sweet photo of ten wee toes today, in honor of Mother’s Day (notice the background forget-me-not flowers, a favourite of the Duke’s late mother)

Photos from Getty and social media as indicated

British Royals Commemorate Remembrance Day & WWI Armistice Centenary

As this year’s Remembrance Sunday coincided with the 100th anniversary of the end of WWI, special consideration (and royal attendance) surrounded this commemoration. A ceremony at the Cenotaph at Whitehall, in central London, occurred as it does each year, led by the Prince of Wales. He was joined by the Dukes of Cambridge, Sussex, York and Kent, the Princess Royal, the Earl of Wessex and Prince Michael of Kent, all in military uniform with respective caps of their rank.

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Queen Elizabeth, who watched the service from a Whitehall balcony for the second time, wore a new hat in black felt. The design features an upturned kettle brim and tall molded crown, the top of which looks to be off the same block as Angela Kelly’s split crown hats. The hat is simply trimmed with a layered leather and felt hatband which circles the crown midway, finishing at the front in a looped knot. The streamlined embellishment works well on this design to balance the slightly awkward shape of the crown’s top.

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Designer: Looks like Angela Kelly
Previously Worn: This hat is new

The Duchess of Cornwall repeated her large black black felt hat with flyaway raised brim edged in a wide band of bias-woven ribbon. It’s still a dramatic statement piece for her with the most magnificently sleek lines.

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Designer: Philip Treacy
Previously Worn: Dec 25, 2016;  Nov 13, 2016Dec 25, 2015

The Duchess of Cambridge wore a new hat which, interestingly is a winter felt version of this straw hat already in her wardrobe. The lines of this design, with extended brim around the upswept back of the design are particularly lovely and beautifully punctuated with the slim binding around the brim. The choice of a single curling quill for trim is also the right one for this hat- overall, it’s an elegant piece that, I think, will be a good addition to Kate’s millinery collection.

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Designer: Lock and Co. It is a bespoke version of the Abney from AW 2018. Coat is Alexander McQueen.
Previously Worn: This hat is new

The Duchess of Sussex wore a black percher hat with bumper shaped base, trimmed with a single-looped side bow. These smaller profile millinery designs suit Meghan well and I really like the textural difference between the velvet felt of the hat and the silk wool of her coat. Large base button perchers sometimes read as a bit boring and the cuffed, bumper shape of this one has a slight military nod that fits this event very well.

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Designer: unknown (my guess is Stephen Jones). Coat by Givenchy
Previously Worn: This hat is new

The Countess of Wessex’s modified saucer hat features a shallow button crown and wide brim and is trimmed with a large silk bow that drapes over half of the design. The sharply upswept angle that the hat’s base (visible in the third photo in the gallery below) places it on the head is key here- without it, I suspect the hat might read a bit 1980s twee but the elevated position keeps the piece looking modern and fresh.

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The Countess of Wessex wore this hat later in the day when she and Prince Edward attended the Welsh National Service of Thanksgiving at Llandaff Cathedral in Cardiff.

Designer: Jane Taylor
Previously Worn: This hat is new. 
After the Cenotaph service, other royal family members traveled also to other services marking the Armistice centenary held around the United Kingdom. Princess Anne and Vice Admiral Timothy Laurence attended the Scottish Commemorative Service at Glasgow Cathedral where Princess Anne repeated her black percher hat with net veil-overlaid round button base trimmed with a crescent of pointed black feathers. The percher style is a fairly new one for Anne but one I hope she continues to embrace as it works particularly well to modernize and soften her hairstyle.
Designer: unknown
Previously Worn: Nov 10, 2017Oct 4, 2017Jun 27, 2017
The Duke and Duchess Gloucester attended the Armistice Day Service at the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire, the Duke in a black bowler hat and the Duchess in a lovely new peacock blue felt pillbox with domed crown. The colour of this piece is wonderful on Brigitte and pairs so well with her navy coat to create an overall ensemble that is a little punchier than we usually see at such memorial events but still perfectly appropriate. 


Designer: unknown
Previously Worn: This hat is new
Finally, the Prince of Wales attended a Remembrance Service at the Guards’ Chapel at Wellington Barracks. The Prince, who is Colonel of the Welsh Guards Regiment, wore a traditional regimental bowler hat.

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Several family members also attended a service at Westminster Abbey commemorating the centenary of the WWI Armistice- we’ll look at those hats in a post coming up first thing tomorrow morning. For now, what do you think of this first round of hats we saw worn for Remembrance Day yesterday?
Photos from Getty and social media as indicated