Belgian Royals Attend Laeken Mass

Members of the Belgian royal family attended the annual mass in memory of the deceased members of their family at the Church of Our Lady of Laeken on Thursday, February 17, 2022

For the event, Queen Mathilde repeated a calot hat with domed, pointed crown wrapped with flying ribbon tails around the bottom curve. The textured black fabric covering it has small dimples that lend a subtle sparkle and welcome texture to the piece.


The hat tops another elegant ensemble for Mathilde. I wasn’t always a fan of the pointed crown’s shape but it’s a unique touch I’ve come around to appreciate, simply because it adds some interest. My issue here is with the puckers around the base, where the fabric has not been smoothly blocked (see what I mean more clearly here).


Designer: I believe it is Fabienne Delvigne. Coat by Meer Couture
Previously Worn: Dec 12, 2015; Dec 13, 2014Nov11, 2011Nov 15, 2008

Princess Astrid wore a simple padded black velvet headband.

Princess Claire wore a wide-brimmed black felt fedora. The hat is trimmed with a wide ribbon hatband topped with a slim leather one that ties into a double looped bow on the side. The scale is lovely on Claire as are those stacked hatbands, which give just enough contrast to the design.

Previously Worn:  This hat is new

Princess Delphine wore a slouchy black felt cloche with cuffed brim wrapped in a swath of dotted net tulle. It’s a chic look that suits the petite princess well.

Designer: Elvis Pompilio

Previously Worn:  This hat is new

Princess Léa wore a wide brimmed black felt fedora.

I think this quintet is a great example of the diversity of styles one can choose for more sombre events while still making a style statement. Which hats here speak to you most?

Images from Getty as indicated  

Belgian National Day

The Belgian royal family celebrated their country’s national holiday today with a Te Deum mass at The Cathedral of St. Michael and St. Gudula followed by a military parade outside the Royal Palace.

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Queen Mathilde wore a new bandeau headpiece covered in a textured striped fabric in the palest beigey-pink.

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The caped floral dress requires a light millinery touch and the scale and subtle texture of this design works well. It’s nicely finished, with bias placement of the stripe and not a pucker or underside structure to be seen. While it lets the dress be the focus, which I suppose was its aim, I’m afraid I find it a bit underwhelming

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Designer: Fabienne Delvigne
Previously Worn: This headpiece is new

Princess Elisabeth also wore a new hat, in textured deep orange (or tomato red?!) straw. The pillbox design is simply trimmed with a knotted sash on the side.

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It’s a great scale on Elisabeth, the weave of the hat providing textural contrast to the floral pattern on her dress. We’ve not seen her in many hats and this one is a good ‘beginner.’

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Designer:  Fabienne Delvigne’s “Kennedy” design. Dress by Natan
Previously Worn: This hat is new

Enrolled in this year’s course at the Belgian Military Academy, Princess Elisabeth marched in the military parade in full uniform.

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Princess Astrid and Prince Laurent also attended in military uniform, Princess Astrid in a green hat with smart curved brim and Prince Laurent in a traditional cap (Princess Claire did not attend).

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Today’s celebration officially included Princess Delphine and her partner, Jim O’Hare, for the first time. She wore a vibrant patterned dress and matching beret from Belgian ethical fashion brand Erratum, whose work is inspired by Africa.

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It’s a bold look but one that seems authentic for the artist, whose work is described as vibrant, playful and quirky. The same words describe this ensemble and that’s exactly what makes me love it. Yes, it’s lot of pattern and the hat could really use some structure (there’s a reason fabric hats are blocked over sinamay bases!) but its a confident statement that I wish we saw more in royal fashion.

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Designer: Erratum
Previously Worn: This hat is new

Princess Marie-Esméralda attended the Te Deum in a very pretty pink pleated bandeau headpiece.

Designer: unknown
Previously Worn: I believe this is new

It’s wonderful to see larger events opening up, especially with they include the debut of a new princess! What do you think of this group of hats today in Brussels?

Images from Getty as indicated