Trooping the Colour: Extended British Royal Family

Trooping the Colour is wonderful not only because it is Queen Elizabeth’s official birthday celebration but because it is attended by the many members of the extended British Royal Family who we seldom see throughout the year. While the Linley family did not attend this year (along with Princess Anne’s children and grandchildren), the Kent family was well represented. Princess Alexandra of Kent repeated a dove grey hat wrapped in wide ruched sash around the based of the crown and dotted net veil. With her tailored grey jacket, she looked most elegant.Lady Nicholas Windsor, Princess Alexandra of Kent, Lady Helen Taylor and the Countess of St. Andrews, June 13, 2015 | Royal Hats

The Duke and Duchess of Kent’s daughter-in-law, Lady Nicholas Windsor, wore the most avant garde hat of the day, a brimless moulded piece in ecru straw trimmed with a large u-shaped embellishment. While some might think her hat sprouted horns, I liked the unusual trim and Paola wore the piece very well. The Countess of St. Andrews wore a large navy picture hat with square crown and cartwheel brim edged in a wide white stripe; her hat was trimmed with a large white.

Lady Helen Taylor wore a black beret-based percher hat lavishly trimmed with opalescent paillettes and widely woven black net veil.  You can see a detailed photo is creative hat here.

Designer: Stephen Jones. It is the “Nerve” design from SS 2015
Previously Worn: This hat is new

Princess Michael of Kent repeated her angular, pale grey pillbox with dramatic ostrich plume trim. This hat is an excellent pairing with her austere dress and coat and Marie-Christine looked fabulous.

Designer: John Boyd
Previously Worn: October 18, 2015June 18, 2014; June 16, 2014

Zenouska Mowatt,  Lady Gabriella Windsor and Julia Ogilvy, June 13, 2015 | Royal Hats

Princess Michael’s daughter, Lady Gabriella Windsor, wore a large picture hat in pale pink straw trimmed with three large curling sashes. If this hat is, as I suspect, the OC-875 design from Philip Treacy’s summer collection this year, it features a flat crown and large, cartwheel brim. Princess Alexandra’s daughter-in-law, Julia Ogilvy wore a pink beret trimmed with large flowers while Zenouska Mowatt (Princess Alexandra’s granddaughter) wore a dusty pink curved hat which appeared to be trimmed with silk flowers and a crin overlay on the brim.

The Duchess of Gloucester repeated her raspberry pink straw hat. It’s a fine hat that unfortunately, is not helped by the tulled scarf wrapped around it.

While not visible in photos from today, the Duchess of Gloucester’s daughter-in-law, the Countess of Ulster,  wore a navy percher hat. Lady Sarah Chatto repeated her black straw saucer hat. This draws today’s coverage of Trooping the Colour to a close. Which hat was your favourite on the Buckingham Palace balcony today?

Photos from WeirPhotos/Splash News and WeirPhotos/Splash News via Corbis; and Getty as indicated

British Royal Wedding Four Years On: The Kent Family

A wedding Some of my favourite hats worn at the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s wedding four years ago were worn by the Kent branch of the British extended royal family. Here is a peek back at these hats.

The Duchess of Kent channelled spring in a percher cocktail hat with pale pink base. The centrepiece of the hat was its trim- a large bouquet of silk flowers and leaves, ribbon loops and soft white feathers. We don’t see many percher hats on royal ladies of a certain age and while this one showed that Katharine’s millinery approach has stayed right on trend, the soft colours were very flattering and suited her well.

Lady Helen Taylor (the Duchess of Kent’s daughter)  topped her floral appliquéd Erdem dress and coat with a coordinating embellished beret. In electric blue straw, the beret was trimmed with a side spray of white silk flowers and a tall swath of blue dotted net tulle. I assume the white flowers were added to tie in with the flowers on the dress but they didn’t work for me- the hit of white created a jarring contrast that put the whole outfit into ‘too much’ territory. With a fussy dress and coat, I think Helen would have done better with a less fussy hat.

The Duchess of Kent’s daughter-in-laws wore contrasting pieces in pale hues. The Countess of St. Andrews topped her oyster lace trimmed suit with a large picture hat. In pale beige straw, the hat featured a flat crown and wide mushroom brim. The hat’s only embellishment was a large bow which fanned over one side of the brim (you can see the bow here at 36:30). Lady Nicholas Windsor topped her pale pink suit with a Philip Treacy fascinator of purple orchids and swirling feathers. I thought the styling on Paola’s ensemble was perfect- her clean lined suit, simple jewellery and elegant up-do allowed this statement headpiece to be showed to maximum effect. I adored it on her.

2011-04-29 Andrews 5

The Countess of St. Andrews’ two daughters, Lady Marina and Lady Amelia Windsor, both chose black hats. Lady Marina wore a large lampshade hat in black and grey straw. The graphic stripes of straw on each layer of the tiered hat were countered by a massive and curvaceous grey straw bow on the back of the hat. The end result was a dramatic and very classic hat reminiscent of Audrey Hepburn in “Breakfast at Tiffany’s”. Lady Amelia wore a more streamlined hat in black straw with a diagonally raised brim and a wide white band around the crown.

Lady Marina Windsor and Lady Amelia Windsor, April 29, 2011 | Royal Hats

Princess Alexandra topped her blue brocade suite with a monochrome picture hat. With a blue straw base, the hat was covered in ruched silk organza and trimmed at the side with large blue silk roses and gold feathers. While the overlaid fabric on the hat gave considerable texture, it combined with Alexandra’s suit to make and ensemble suffering from fabric texture overload. I think this hat would have worked better sans overlay, keeping those romantic floral embellishments.

Princess Alexandra of Kent, April 29, 2011 | Royal Hats   Princess Alexandra of Kent, April 29, 2011 | Royal Hats

Julia Ogilvy, Princess Alexandra’s daughter-in-law, topped her taupe dress and ivory lace coat with a cream straw picture hat. The streamlined Philip Treacy design was simply trimmed with a band around the crown and a signature Treacy large flying bow.

Princess Alexandra of Kent and Julia Ogilvy, April 29, 2011 | Royal Hats  Julia Ogilvy, April 29, 2011 in Philip Treacy | Royal Hats

Princess Michael of Kent chose characteristically dramatic millinery for this event. While her white picture hat followed a fairly traditional shape, the scale of the wide cartwheel brim was larger than life. The huge hat was trimmed with a wide scarf of ruched silk that looked to be effortlessly thrown over the hat. Marie-Christine wears dramatic hats so very well and this was no exception. I adore the wide brim and appreciate the way the large scale hat balanced her shiny satin Andrea Odicini jacket.

2011-04-29 Michael 1

One of the newest members to the British Royal Family, Lady Frederick Windsor wowed with her millinery choice at this event. Designed by Philip Treacy, Sophie’s navy straw hat featured a moulded crown (as opposed to a seam-joined crown) with wide, oval brim. The elliptical brim was balanced by another Treacy signature multi-looped flying bow. While very simple, the hat is quite a bold design. I particularly loved the way the asymmetrical hat both complemented and contrasted against Sophie’s streamlined Armani coat and dress.

Wearing one of my favourite hats at this wedding, Lady Gabriella Windsor was a vision in peacock blue. Her vibrant picture hat featured an upturned ‘slice’ brim which was trimmed with large silk roses and an arrow feather. The shape was wonderful on Garbiella and I adored how her pale seafoam coat and dress created just the right background for her bright hat and matching purse to ‘pop’. This slice hat is a slightly smaller scale than others in this same style and while it works wonderfully as is, I think it could easily have handled an up-sizing.

 Prince Michael of Kent Family, April 29, 2011 | Royal Hats
The Kents brought us stylish cocktail berets and sublime picture hats at this wedding. Which hat(s) stand out most to you? Stay tuned later today when we look at hats worn by some of the royal guests.
Photos from Getty as indicated, Woman and Home, and BBC TV via The British Monarchy. Source of final photo is unknown.

Linley Wedding Guests, Twenty Years Later

 The wedding of Viscount Linley and The Hon. Serena Stanhope twenty years ago today was a “mini” royal wedding – while not a prince himself, David Armstrong-Jones was the son of a princess and a member of the extended British Royal Family. And we all know that being a member of the extended British Royal family means there will be some great hats at your wedding! After looking at the bride’s veil and dress earlier today, let’s now turn our attention to the guests’ hats.

David’s mother Princess Margaret wore a deep claret velvet pillbox hat topped in pomegranate and black spiky feathers. His sister, Lady Sarah Armstrong Jones, wore an unembellished rust coloured straw cloche.

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Queen Elizabeth wore a salmon pink fabric covered hat with rounded crown and high, upturned, pleated brim by Philip Somerville. Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother (and grandmother of the groom) wore one of her signature veiled capulet hats with upturned front brim and side spray of feathers.

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Princess Anne, who had married Vice Admiral Sir Timothy Laurence less than a year earlier, repeated the turquoise blue veiled pillbox with side rose she had originally debuted during the mid 1980s. (Anne would later wear this hat to Charles and Camilla’s wedding in 2005 and her grandmother’s 100th birthday in 2000).

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Lady Helen Taylor wore powder blue bowler hat with wide ribbon wrapped around the crown. Princess Diana was also in blue- a large blue lampshade style hat with white ribbon trim around the brim and wrapped around the crown designed by Philip Somerville. At the time, I believe some were surprised to see her at this wedding as she and Prince Charles had announced their separation ten months earlier and her future royal role was unclear.

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Princess Alexandra of Kent wore a dove grey hat with rounded crown wrapped in a black ribbon and trimmed with flowers and net. I think this hat translates fairly well today, as do the hats of Julia Ogilvy (her daughter-in-law) in black and and the Duchess of Gloucester in dark teal blue.

Princess Alexandra, Julia Ogilvy, Duchess of Gloucester, October 8, 1993 | The Royal Hats Blog

The only foreign royals I could find at this wedding were Queen Anne-Marie of Greece and Princess Salimah Aga Khan. Queen Anne-Marie wore a large black (or chocolate brown?!) hat with an upturned brim and a high almost Puritan shaped pointed crown. That hat was a little too Halloween-esque for my taste. My favourite hat at this wedding was the brown capulet worn by Princess Salimah Aga Khan. The shape is so chic and the black band around the crown and trim around the upturned brim gives a bit of punchy contrast.

Queen Anne-Marie, October 8, 1993 | The Royal Hats Blog Princess Salimah Aga Khan, October 8, 1993 | The Royal Hats Blog

Serena’s mother Virginia looked very elegant in a purple picture hat with slightly curved brim (she is to the left of Princess Margaret, below). Her hat, like several others, has aged very well- surprisingly well, in fact. While many hats at this wedding do seem rather dated, there are an equal number that could easily be worn today.

 

As I sign off this post and wish Viscount and Viscountess Linley the happiest of anniversaries, I can’t resist asking- Which hat at this wedding is your favourite?

Photos from Getty as indicated; Dave Parker via Corbis