Greek Royal Wedding 20 Years On

Last month marked the 20th anniversary of a major royal wedding in London attended by three Kings and eight Queens. On July 9,1999 Princess Alexia of Greece and Denmark married Carlos Javier Morales Quintana, a Spanish architect and a champion yachtsman, at St. Sophia Cathedral. Over the next few days, we’re going to take a look back at this event.

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The bride went to one of her mother’s favourite designers, Austrian Inge Sprawson, for her sleek gown in ivory satin. With long, fitted sleeves and a wide v-neck, the focal point of the dress was a pair of diagonal crossed seams at the waist that created a fitted bodice silhouette and attached the gown’s skirt.

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The straight skirt flowed into a modest sweep train with a longer, detachable train fixed at the waist. The back of the dress was decorated in a row of beaded buttons which were repeated on the underside of each sleeve.

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Following the tradition set by her grandmother and followed by her mother, aunts and cousins, Alexia wore her great-grandmother Crown Princess Margaret’s Irish lace veil anchored with the Danish royal family’s Khedive of Egypt Tiara.

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A simple gown is usually the best way to show off such an amazing vintage lace veil but I’m just not sure that the cut and fabric of this dress entirely flattered it’s wearer. For me, it always paled in comparison to the amazing gold beaded Armani dress with portrait neckline she wore two days earlier to a pre-wedding party- a look I’ve long thought was her very best. It was breathtakingly stunning

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Princess Alexia was attended by her sister Princess Theodora, who wore a long sleeved gown in floral embroidered lilac silk organza with sheer sleeves and a draped neckline.

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Bridesmaides included Princess Alexia’s 3-year old niece, Princess Olympia, and Princess Mafalda, daughter of Prince Kyril and Princess Rosario of Bulgaria (the Prince and Princess of Preslav). Their dotted white silk organza full-skirted frocks with lilac silk sashes were topped with delicate white floral hair wreaths. Pageboys wore high waisted lilac silk trousers with white silk Peter Pan collared shirts.

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Fascinators were very popular in 1999 (Queen Elizabeth famously wore one two weeks earlier for the wedding of the Earl and Countess of Wessex) making Queen Anne-Marie’s headpiece of lilac feathers a fashionable choice at the time. From today’s viewpoint, it seems a fussy choice for her lace trimmed coat and dress.

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Crown Princess Marie-Chantal topped a textured suit with a wide brimmed hat in light ecru straw. The design featured a raised brim around the front behind which was a large grin unstructured bow.

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I’m curious, dearest readers- what do you think of this bridal look and hats, 20 years on?

Jump over to the following posts to review hats worn by the many royal guests:

Danish and Spanish Extended Royal Families
British Royal Guests
Norwegian and Swedish Royal Guests
Luxembourg, Jordanian, and Eastern European Royal Guests

Photos from Getty as indicated 

Dutch Royal Wedding 17 Years On: Royal Guests Part 3

We wrap up our nostalgic look back at King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima’s wedding on February 2, 2002 with a look at the royal hats worn by guests from Spain, Greece, Jordan, Great Britain, Monaco with a few extras thrown in.

Queen Sofia of Spain wore a cascading headpiece of golden beige organza leaves and roses. While the design looked transported from the 1960s, it linked well with her lace suit.

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Princess Cristina wore a heather purple felt brimmed hat trimmed with feathers in purple and dark grey. I’m still at odds about the feather placement- on one hand, it’s terribly messy but on the other, I like its exuberance and admire how the two shades link with her dark blue velvet and purple silk coat… a rather bulky item (it looked like a blanket) that hasn’t aged well. When a hat makes a coat look better, that can only be a good thing.

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Queen Anne-Marie of Greece topped her textured red coat with a matching hat. In a modified top hat shape, the felt design features a tall, flared crown with domed top, upturned rolled brim with downsweep on one side, a layered red felt hatband and brown mink pompoms. The mink trim links well with the mink trim on Anne-Marie’s coat without being overly matchy and those pompoms are whimsical and fun. This hat’s unique shape is very much of its time but I always thought it was a bold and brave choice for her.

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Princess Marie-Chantal followed the same formula as Grand Duchess Maria Teresa, topping her richly patterned brocade coat with a tall brown fur Cossack style hat. Unfortunately, the hat’s large scale completely overwhelmed her and I’m still trying to see how it relates to the red, magenta and gold printed coat (which it’s own, is gorgeous!).

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Queen Noor of Jordan wore an embroidered headscarf in white, an interesting colour choice for a winter event with her baby blue silk tailored suit. She is photographed below by the Prince of Wales who wore his naval uniform and cap. Princess Sarvath, Princess Badiya and Princess Sumaya are also listed on the guest list but I’ve not been able to locate any photographs of them.
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The Countess of Wessex wore primarily Philip Treacy millinery hats at the time and chose one in camel felt for this event. The design made its style statement primarily by shape, pairing a deeply pinched, tall stovepipe crown with an offset brim. The hat was minimally embellished with a slim hatband tied in a front bow. It’s another design very much of the time and looking at it now, seemed a little heavy for Sophie’s cream coat and delicately embellished dress.

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Prince Albert of Monaco wore military uniform with cap while his elder sister, Princess Caroline of Hanover and Monaco, wore a grey felt cloche with extended brim and wide grey hatband. The hat’s classic shape suited Caroline well although I’m not sure about its pairing with her Chanel dress and coat, pieces that feel like they ought to be paired with something more luxurious and bespoke.
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Princess Míriam of Bulgaria topped her pink feathered skirt and fur collared jacket in a what looks like a headpiece of horizontally placed pheasant and pink feathers, placed on the back of her head.
Princess Inaara, wife of the Aga Khan at the time, wore a calot hat in large flowers with petals made of mocha and copper organza, velvet and crin (see closeup here). The mixed textures on the piece gave it some life and while it related well to Inaara’s fur trimmed camel cape, these combined less well with her mushroom grey tweed suit and earthy green blouse. Too many neutrals, I’d say.
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Other noteable guests included Nelson Mandela and Graça Machel, who wore a traditional African printed capulana headwrap and UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan and his wife Nane, who wore a brimmed hat in pale pink straw. 
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This wraps up our look back at this wedding! What do you think of this final group of hats?
Photos from Getty as indicated

York Royal Wedding: Royal Guests

The wedding of Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank included a handful of other royal guests, beginning with the Greek royal family. Crown Princess Marie-Chantal topped her delicate pink lace dress in a pale pink button percher with a spray of intricate pink silk handmade flowers. Her daughter, Princess Maria-Olympia, paired her vibrant pink patterned Dolce and Gabbana dress with a sculptural headpiece in silver lace. Both millinery designs are deceptively complex but make fantastic compliments to their respective frocks.

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My cuties ♥️♥️

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Designer: Both are Philip Treacy
Previously Worn: Both are new
Princess Ekaterina of Hanover had the most interesting hat of the day, a wide brimmed saucer in greige animal printed straw, trimmed with rows of pheasant feathers that look like rows of lion fish. The hat is so out there photos of it look photoshopped (I’ve done several doubletakes!) and I can only imagine the GIFs it will inspire.
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Designer: Suzanne Couture Millinery
Previously Worn: Princess Ekaterina’s mother-in-law, Chantal Hochuli, originally wore this hat years ago 
Chantal Hochuli (former Princess Chantal of Hanover) wore a large round black percher hat trimmed with white flowers and black feathers while Princess Alessandra of Hanover topped her green and purple Andrew GN dress with a magenta teardrop percher of pleated straw, wrapped in a matching swath of net veil.



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Designers: Chantal’s is unknown. Alessandra’s hat is from Spanish brand Mimoki
This group includes millinery that fits classification as both beautiful and bizarre- what do you think of these hats today in Windsor?
Photos from Getty and social media as indicated

Greek Royals Celebrate Double Milestone Birthdays

Crown Prince Pavlos and Crown Princess Marie-Chantal of Greece threw a lavish party at their Gloucestershire home over the weekend to celebrate Pavlos’ 50th birthday and Princess Olympia’s 21st birthday. Guests have shared that the party theme was “Prince And The Revolution” with a dress code that called for revolutionised black tie. The costumes that resulted are quite spectacular. While this was officially, a private event, so many photos were shared by both hosts and guests on social media that it does not seem intrusive to share.

Host of the party, Crown Princess Marie-Chantal, wore a Philip Treacy headpiece of silver stars unlike anything else we’ve seen on a royal head.

While not in a hat, Crown Prince Pavlos made an equally loud style statement in floral silk brocade trousers and vest with purple velvet jacket. Princess Olympia topped her Steven Khalil designed dress with an avant garde circular headpiece with pink roses and upright feathers. I suspect it was also made by Philip Treacy.

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Revo⚡️utionise your black tie

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Princess Theodora of Greece’s black and silver headpiece was trimmed in black lace butterflies.

Queen Máxima wore a lavish floral crown of silk orchids, peonies and garden roses. 

King Felipe is visible in the far left of this picture. Spanish media have reported that Queen Letizia, Infanta Elena, Infanta Cristina and Inaki Urdangarin also attended but no photos have surfaced so far (same for members of the Danish royal family along with Prince Pavlos’ parents and other siblings). The woman in the centre with butterflies and a feather headpiece is Pia Getty, Princess Marie-Chantal’s older sister.

Crown Princess Mette-Marit wore what looks to be an embellished metallic headband (again!).

Francesca von Habsburg-Lothringen wore a purple feathered headpiece and was accompanied by her daughters, Archduchess Eleanore and Archduchess Gloria.

Other royal guests not in hats or headpieces included Prince and Princess Michael of Kent, Prince Gustaf and Carina Axelssen, and Rosario Nadal, former wife of Prince Kyril of Bulgaria. India Hicks, who attended with her partner and three of her four sons, took a more risque approach to the dress code in a tuxedo with shirt and tie of bodypaint.

By all accounts, the party was a particularly memorable one. Here are a few more of the fantastical headpieces worn by guests.

Photos from social media as indicated

Royal Ascot 2017 Day 4: Wrap Up

Royal Ascot | Royal Hats Princess Marie-Chantal of Greece attended Day 4 of Ascot today with friends. She wore a new cocktail hat by Philip Treacy with button base, trimmed with two straw and crin twists.

John and Lady Carolyn Warren were part of the royal carriage procession today, accompanied by horse breeder, The Hon. Peter Stanley,  and his wife, Frances. Lady Carolyn wore a beautiful icy grey-blue disk hat with button crown, trimmed with  a silk bow and spray of feathers in the same hue. Frances Stanley wore a large Philip Treacy hat with off centered crown, trimmed with a gold silk signature Treacy bow and spray of feathers.

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Baroness Floella Benjamin presented several awards today in a strikingly avant garde black felt top hat with blue floral trim.

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My “Nod To Milliners” pick today it is Rosie Olivia in an exuberant red, ruffled cocktail hat with grey floral trim.

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#royalascot

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Finally, I sign off today with this charming photo share by millinery suppliers, Petershams. When it’s hot at Ascot, the tops and tails come off!

This Week’s Extras

Royal Hats

Princess Yuriko of Mikasa ceremonially commemorated 50 days since her late husband’s entombment (Getty)

Crown Princess Victoria and Prince Daniel arrived in Milan yesterday with Prince Oscar who looked cosy in a cap from Geggamoja

Prince Oscar, December 16, 2016 | Royal Hats

Queen Margrethe has been hand picking images to share during each day of Advent on the Danish Monarchy’s social media- one of the pictures this week included this one of herself and a young Princess Benedikte celebrating Santa Lucia.

Danish millinery Susanne Juul (who makes many of the hats worn by Crown Princess Mary and Princess Benedikte) celebrated her 25th anniversary this week. Congratulations!

Princess Marie-Chantal of Greece in a warm knit hat for an outing to the Natural History Museum with her youngest son.

British milliner Rachel Trevor Morgan experimented with some innovative hat storage in her workshop…

 

 Royal Hats

While her parents and brother were in Italy, Princess Estelle partied it up with her cousins and grandparents at a Christmas lunch. Adorable! (Princess Madeleine Facebook)

The Danish royal family all gathered at Christiansborg Palace for a Christmas party for their staff. Prince Henrik attended in a most memorable tie (Danish Monarchy)

Lovely to see Prince Jacques and Princess Gabriella attend the annual palace Children’s Christmas Festival. Their mum was recently in India where this beautiful shot of her was captured.

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Christening of Prince Christian: Royal Guests

Royal Hats When Prince Christian of Denmark was christened ten years ago, the event was attended by numerous royal relatives and close friends. After looking at the hats worn by his mother, grandparents and godparents, we now turn our attention to those worn by royal guests.

Queen Margrethe’s sisters, Queen Anne-Marie and Princess Benedikte, both wore vibrant hats. In bright red felt, Queen Anne-Marie’s hat featured an unusually tall crown, a short, upturned brim; the piece was boldly embellished with a large knotted bow and curling black feather spines. Princess Benedikte topped her grey fur coat with a large beret-style design in raspberry felt. We have seen Princess Benedikte in numerous hats in this hue and the colour is fantastic on her.

Princess Marie-Chantal wore a Philip Treacy designed fascinator of straw twists and several different varieties of gold feathers. While some might argue that the spiky design gave some textural contrast to her tweed coat and dress, I have always found the combination of classic clothing and modern headpiece to be jarring and disharmonious.

Princess Alexia of Greece topped her grey fur jacket with a burgundy felt hat. With an indented crown and fluted, upturned brim, this hat is all about shape. I adore the grey and burgundy colour scheme of her ensemble but I’m afraid the stylised brim and crown shapes on her hat look rather dated today. Tatiana Blatnik (who would become Princess Tatiana of Greece and Denmark in 2010) wore a simple fascinator of navy feathers. The lightness of the piece, which feels better suited to a summer wedding or garden party, feels off balance against her winter coat

Princess Theodora wore an interesting loden green beret variation with high peaked side trimmed with a felt rose in the same colour. Dutch Princess Laurentien also wore an exaggerated hat- made of the same brown plaid as her tailored jacket, the piece featured a tall, indented crown and oval shaped brim. Unfortunately, the oversize fedora was too big for Laurentien and looked to be swallowing her up. In this pairing of exaggerated hats, I think Princess Theodora’s was substantially more successful.

Princess Theodora, January 21, 2006 | Royal Hats  Princess Laurentien, January 21, 2006 | Royal Hats

Princess Mathilde (as was her title in 2006) topped her beautiful red coat dress and cape with a large matching hat. With a squared crown and upfolded brim, the hat was simply trimmed with a wide ribbon around the base of the crown. It’s a strong look for Mathilde but she carried it well. It’s a classic piece that I would love to see trotted out again.

Princess Mathilde, January 21, 2006 | Royal Hats  Princess Mathilde, January 21, 2006 | Royal Hats

Princess Märtha Louise of Norway wore a 1940s inspired hat by Anja Irgens. With a close fitting crown and diamond brooch detail, the star of this hat was its upfolded brim that swept around the hat in fluted waves. Märtha Louise has long been known for her quirky style and while this hat fits that style brief, the colour and shape are exquisite. Ten years later, it is still one of my favourite hats in her wardrobe.

Princess Märtha Louise, January 21, 2006  in Anja Irgens| Royal Hats  Princess Märtha Louise, January 21, 2006  in Anja Irgens| Royal Hats

Princess Benedikte’s daughter, Princess Alexandra of Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg topped her gold bouclé coat with a purple fascinator. The headpiece, consisting of a purple silk rose and feathers that swept around the top of her head, provided a spot of colour and textural contrast to her ensemble. The Countess of Frederiksborg, who arrived with her young sons Prince Nikolai and Prince Felix, wore in an ivory felt hat with asymmetrical upfolded brim. The hat was trimmed in a pleated sash of the same fabric as her coat, drawing the two pieces together in a unified winter white ensemble. Some of you might recognize the hat as the same one worn for Prince Felix’s christening (the last christening to have taken place in the Danish royal family at the time) in 2002- an interesting choice but a hat that Alexandra wore very well.

Princess Alexandra of Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg, January 21, 2006 | Royal Hats   Countess of Frederiksborg, January 21, 2006 | Royal Hats

It is only once in a generation that a royal house christens a future king or queen and the scale of this event reflects its importance. Looking back, I’m surprised at how many hats withstand the test of time and could successfully (and stylishly) be repeated today. Which hats stand out most here to you?