This Week’s Extras

Queen Margrethe in her royal blue felt beanie hat with black patent leather cuffed brim on Wednesday to award the “Queen’s Clock” military honour
Princess Hisako and her eldest daughter, Princess Tsuguko, wore cream hats to visit the Meiji Shrine this week. Earlier in November, Princess Hisako wore a streamlined black hat to present the Emperor’s Cup at the 75th All Japan Rubber Baseball Tournament in Okayama.

The following new millinery designs caught my eye this week:
Black felt trilby with the most perfect bow by British milliner Rachel Trevor Morgan
Green straw beret percher with cut feathers and surprise applique lace flowers by British milliner Rachel Dunn
Grey felt trilby with coral embroidered flowers and silk hatband by Kenyan milliner Lali Heath
Sky blue scalloped straw disk with raised back, silk bow and veil by British milliner Stephen Jones
Navy felt button percher with lovely velvet butterflies by American brand Art of Hats
Burgundy felt hat with extended, pointed brim (love the zigzaggy slim hatband!) by Russian milliner Lia Gureeva

Angular felt hat with fantastic felt and patent leather twists by British brand Rebecca Couture Millinery
Tweed and velvet halo bandeaux headpieces with stunning floral spray trims by London-based milliner Guilia MIo
Tall cloche in cognac felt with double black hatbands with folded bow by Russian milliner Svetlana Kvarta
Black beret percher cocktail hat with waterfall diamond trim by British milliner Victoria Grant
Dramatic black straw saucer overlaid in floral embroidered tulle by British milliner Lucy Bowler

Wonderful new photo of Queen Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh taken by British photographer Chris Jackson and released for their 73rd wedding anniversary this week. The card they are reading was from their great-grandchildren Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis.
To further celebrate this anniversary, The Royal Collection Trust shared this wonderful overhead shot of the Queen on her wedding day.

Photos from social media as indicated

Imperial Crown Prince Proclaimed

Last Sunday, the Imperial royal family celebrated Rikkoshi-Senmei-no-Gi, the final ceremony in the Emperor’s enthronement that officially proclaims the new crown prince which had been postponed seven months due to the global pandemic.

Empress Masako arrived early in the morning to prepare for the day of ceremonies in her oyster silk covered bumper hat.
Crown Prince Akihito and Crown Princess Kiko followed an hour later, Kiko in a pale lime silk jacquard floral gown with matching calot hat. The cuffed brim on this hat is covered in wide bias stripes of smooth silk and silk smocked in the same fine pattern as the waist on Kiko’s dress. This smocking gives some textural dimension to the hat, especially when punctuated with the small shiny silk stripe between each section. While a subtle detail, it is impeccably executed and once again, shows incredible quality and millinery skill.


At eleven o’clock that morning, the Imperial royal family gathered for the Rikkoshi-Senmei-no-gi ceremony where the new Crown Prince was officially proclaimed. Emperor Naruhito and Crown Prince Akishino wore traditional sokutai robesand the distinctive black kanmuri hat. Empress Masako and Crown Princess Kiko wore junihitoe multi-layered kimonos with the triple pronged golden headpiece and elaborate sculpted sweeping ponytail that is worn with this costume.




Members of the extended Imperial Royal family were in attendance, the ladies in court dress (gowns and hats).
Princess Mako repeated a blush dotted silk jacquard gown and matching bumper brimmed calot hat. Princess Kako repeated a scarlet bandeau headpiece trimmed with silk flowers.
Princess Mako’s hat previously worn: Nov 16, 2019; Jan 13, 2017; December 23, 2015;
Princess Kako’s hat previously worn: Feb 23, 2020; Oct 25, 2019
Princess Hanako topped her apple silk gown with a matching saucer percher hat with pleated rim, embellished with ivory feathers and silk leaves. Princess Nobuko wore a bandeau headpiece covered in periwinkle blue silk, trimmed with feather flowers on the side.
Princess Nobuko’s hat previously worn: Feb 23, 2020
Princess Akiko of Mikasa wore a lemon yellow bumper hat wrapped in a swath of pleated crin and trimmed with a spray of silk flowers across the back. Princess Yoko repeated a pale coral textured pillbox.
Princess Akiko’s hat previously worn: Oct 25, 2019; Apr 10, 2019
Princess Yoko’s hat previously worn: Oct 25, 2019Apr 10, 2019
Princess Hisako wore a standout hat with crown in the same vibrant green silk as the cuffs on her gown. The hat’s cartwheel brim appears to be  covered in overlapping ombre leaves and an overlay of veil. Princess Tsuguko repeated her burgundy bumper hat with veil and side silk floral trim.
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Princess Hisako’s hat previously worn: I believe this hat is new
Princess Tsuguko’s hat previously worn: Apr 30, 2019; Feb 26, 2019; Jan 10, 2018 
Following the ceremony, the Crown Prince and Princess worshipped at Kashiko-dokoro shrine which is located on the grounds of the Imperial Palace. They were joined by several of the Imperial princesses who wore pale gowns and repeated ivory hats.



That evening, the emperor, empress, crown prince and princess took part in the Choken-no-Gi (First Audience ceremony), the women in glittering diamond parures complete with impressive tiaras.

The vibrant hats worn by the Imperial princesses at the Rikkoshi-Senmei-no-gi stood out to me- weren’t they wonderful?!
Photos from social media as indicated; The Asahi Shimbun, The Asahi Shimbun, The Asahi Shimbun via Getty; 

This Week’s Extras

Yesterday, Empress Masako was photographed arriving for the Spring Equinox Festival at the Imperial Palace in an ecru silk covered hat with upturned Breton brim. This video shows Crown Princess Kiko, Princess Mako, Princess Kako and Princess Hisako arriving in cream silk bumper hats and Princess Tsuguko in a her cloche with short cartwheel brim.
King Harald and Queen Sonja and Crown Prince Haakon and Crown Princess Mette-Marit shared greetings and words of encouragement along with photos of how they are keeping occupied in isolation


Several of you have commented on this re-post of Queen Margrethe making a dachshund hat. It’s certainly worth another watch!
I have no idea when this photo was taken but it shows one of the wives of  Swazi King Mswati III in a fun, deep red headpiece that I don’t remember seeing before.
The following new millinery designs caught my eye this week:

 Blue straw fedora with saucy brim with silver lace appliqué with hand embroidered sequins by Dutch milliner Wies Mauduit
Black beret percher rimmed in straw blooms and a straw bow by New York-based brand Suzanne Couture Millinery
Another bold and wonderfully vibrant sinamay headpiece by American milliner Amy Fowler
Lovely drape on this vibrant blue felt beret percher’s double bow by Australian milliner Neil Grigg
Exaggerated and striking white boater hat with tall crown and cutout brim by Korean milliner Q Park
Blue ombre bandeau headpiece of overlapping straw leaves by British milliner Bee Smith
Lovely mulberry felt fedora with extended brim and fantastic pheasant feathers by Kenya-based miliner Chloe Mitchell
Black and white straw saucer with flying rim trimmed with lace by American milliner Tiffany Arey
Mysteriously beautiful veiled black lace mask headpiece by British milliner Jane Taylor
Tan felt fedora with fascinating textured brim by Australian milliner Felicity Northeast
Two-toned blue sinamay percher with sweeping shape by New York-based milliner Sally Caswell
Futuristic black straw saucer brimmed design with orbiting planets by British brand Miss Ginny Millinery
Two blush leather halo bandeau headpieces with statement flowers here and here by Australian milliner Cessiah Alice
For our dear gents, this sleek black fedora with silk paisley hatband from Danish brand Hornskov København

And from British milliner Anne Tomlin, this amazing percher made from straw braid sewn with wire and formed into a caged button percher, trimmed with exquisite handmade lily-of-the-valley and silk abaca leaves.

Happy news from Bhutan on the safe arrival of a new prince on Thursday.

What are you doing to spread support and encouragement these days?

Photos from social media as indicated

Imperial New Years Poetry Reading 2020

Members of the Imperial Royal Family attended the annual New Years poetry reading yesterday at the Royal Palace in some colourful and interesting hats.


Crown Princess Kiko repeated a mint green silk covered bumper hat, trimmed with a diamond of the same woven lattice silk as the bodice of her gown.  Princess Mako repeated a pale, ice blue silk floral jacquard covered calot hat with narrow, upturned, cuffed brim. Princess Kako repeated a royal blue silk bumper hat with beaded edge on the top of the upturned brim.

Princess Nobuko wore a new apricot silk covered bumper hat studded with tiny sparkle beads. The silk on the bumper brim is covered in bias stripes, giving a subtle diagonal movement to the design. Princess Akiko topped her cornflower blue gown with a matching hat. The hat’s button crown is covered in what looks like appliqued silk in the same hue, and a slim bumper brim circles the design.

Princess Hisako repeated hat with saddle shaped brim covered in cream silk and an avocado green narrow crown embellished with the same applique cutouts as on her coordinating gown. Green silk flowers and leaves cascade from below the brim’s raised back – a design feature I don’t recall seeing before on a royal hat. Princess Tsuguko also had a new headpiece in teal, gold and taupe with peach silk roses.

This event usually shows us some of the most colourful and memorable Imperial royal hats of the year and yesterday did not disappoint! Which ensembles stand out to you most here?

Photos from social media as indicated

Imperial New Years Lectures 2020

Members of the Imperial Royal Family attended the annual New Years lectures on Tuesday at the Royal Palace.

The Akishino princesses all repeated silk covered hats, Princess Kiko in an ivory bumper hat with gold threaded brocade fabric covering the crown; Princess Mako in her peacock blue wide bandeau with large diamond pattern and multi side bow; and Princess Kaiko in a buttercup yellow bandeau with silk blossoms on the side.

Princess Nobuko repeated an aubergine silk bumper hat with beaded split brim. The colour is divine and I adore the subtle bit of sparkle dressing up the split brim. Princess Akiko repeated a pale blue Breton wrapped in an ostrich feather hatband and frothy veil. Princess Yoko wore an ice blue silk covered bumper hat studded with pears that I don’t think we’ve seen before.

Princess Hisako repeated the peach hat that wowed us at the Imperial inauguration. This improved view of the piece shows it to be a boater base covered in apricot silk. The beaded applique around the neckline of Hisako’s gown is repeated on the top of the crown and the brim is overlaid in ombre dyed layers of silk (maybe layered with crin?). Silk calla lilies in the same ombre shades adorn the side of the hat, studded with pearls. Princess Tsuguko repeated a headpiece of overlapping silk leaves in various shades of purple, trimmed in gold, anchored around the back of her head.

We see few royal events attended in traditional court dress which is a shame, because the combination of gown and hat can be spectacular. Which ensembles stand out to you most here?

Photos from The Asahi Shimbun via Getty; and social media as indicated