Dutch Royal Wedding 20 Years On: Civil Ceremony

Prince Constantijn and Princess Laurentien of the Netherlands celebrated their 20th wedding anniversary earlier this month, a milestone which warrants a look back at their nuptials.

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Constantijn and Laurentien’s circles overlapped years before they decided to marry, Laurentien’s mother Jantien a school friend of Queen Beatrix and her father,  Laurens Jan Brinkhorst, a prominent Dutch politician and diplomat (and, ironically, vocal proponent of a smaller Royal House and reduced political role of the Head of State). The couple, who then resided in Brussels, returned to The Hague for their three day wedding celebration: civil marriage on May 17, 2001,  gala dinner dance at Palace Noordeindeon May 18 and religious ceremony on May 19. Laurentien turned to Edouard Vermeulen of fashion house NATAN for all of her wedding attire.

She arrived at Oude Raadzaal (Old Town Hall) for the civil ceremony in a watermelon pink belted coat and dress topped by a lavender-grey hat with upfolded halo brim. Trimmed simply with a hatband in the same straw, the hat’s focal point was a pronounced brim pleat over Laurentien’s left eyebrow.

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It’s always hard to regard past looks objectively- at the time, I was awed by the dramatic shape of this hat and thought the look to be bold and confident.

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Designer: Fabienne Delvigne

Queen Beatrix wore an ivory straw flat crowned hat with wide layered pink and ivory folded straw hatbands and a pink upturned Breton style brim that beautifully set off her ivory coat and pink accessories.

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Laurentien’s mother Jantien topped her pale cornflower blue suit in a matching hat in the most unique shape – a sort of pillbox with pointed crown over which lay a slanted downturned brim – trimmed with a long quill. The hat’s scale and shape worked so well with the open collar on her jacket.

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Máxima Zorreguita, who would marry Prince Willem-Alexander nine months later, wore a grey straw hat with jauntily upturned brim on the right side. The hat was trimmed in a dark taupe hatband and bound brim (notice the matching clutch!) and an oversize grey flower with lime leaves and curled feather staments that curved around the left side of the design. Interestingly, the hat would reappear two years later on a visit to Brazil with smaller brim and trimming. I prefer this original version.

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Princess Margriet topped her blush suit with a wide brimmed black sinamay hat with tall ruched hatband around the shallow, rounded crown and a relaxed, fluted brim.

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Princess Annette wore a cream hat with straight-sided, domed crown and mushroom shaped brim with side embellishment. I’ve not been able to locate a photo of Princess Marilene.

Twenty years on, which of these hats best represents fashion of the time? Which one stands out to you most?

We’ll continue with a look at the religious ceremony later this week.

Images from Getty as indicated  

Dutch Monarchs Visit North-Limburg

King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima paid a regional visit to North-Limburg today, the day full of engagements related to healthy food, sustainable farming, bio-circular economy, theatre and youth mental health along with a walk through Nationaal Park de Maasduinen.

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For this event, the Dutch queen debuted a new pilllbox hat in emerald braided straw.

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There’s much to love- colour, scale, texture, and beautiful styling with this green dress and patterned coat. Win win win!

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Designer: unknown. Dress and coat by Oscar de la Renta
Previously Worn: this hat is new

That’s now back-to-back green hats for Queen Máxima (a first, I think!) What do you think of her new pillbox today?

Images from Getty as indicated

Dutch Queen Celebrates Leather Company

Queen Máxima was in Weesp yesterday, visiting Dutch leather company Smit & Zoon on the occasion of its 200th anniversary. For this occasion, she repeated her avocado felt hat with flat crown and wide, cartwheel brim trimmed with Petersham ribbon brim binding, hatband, and back bow.

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It’s a hat familiar to many of us and it’s lovely… except for the visible dent on the left side of the crown!

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Designer: Fabienne Delvigne
Previously Worn: Dec 14, 2018; Nov 22, 2018May 23, 2018

We don’t often see such glaring issues on a royal hat and while I’m a little surprised this one wasn’t fixed before this outing, my guess is that we’ll see it good-as-new on its next appearance. It’s an amusing mishap, one that reminds me even a queen is susceptible to a squashed hat!

Images from Getty as indicated

Christening of Princess Estelle, Nine Years On: Royal Guests & Extended Family

t’s no surprise that Princess Estelle’s christening on May 22, 2012 was also attended by numerous royal guests and extended members of the Swedish royal family.

Queen Margrethe wore a navy straw wide-brimmed picture hat. Navy dotted white tulle overlaid the open-weave straw brim and a large flower of white feathers adored the piece on the side. The scale of the piece is such a contrast from the brimless and short-brimmed hats we’re used to seeing on the Danish queen today and while the tulle looks overly fussy to me now, it links the hat well to Margrethe’s dotted ensemble.

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Queen Mathilde (was was Crown Princess at the time, wore a layered calot hat in the same taupe silk chiffon as her skirt. It’s not an terribly exciting hat but anything with more presence likely would have competed with her elaborate beaded jacket and the overall look is certainly festive, however subdued.

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Princess Máxima, who would become queen a year later, stood out in a red suit and Fabienne Delvigne ruched turban. The turban is beautifully draped and pairs well with the modern-vintage vibe of the suit, the vibrant colour giving some much needed pep at an event that, as we’ve seen, saw so many pale and neutral ensembles. Trust Máxima to liven things up.

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Princess Märtha Louise wore a pale straw pink hat with layered raw-edge brim. The jaunty angle provided by the brim’s sidesweeping shape gave it lovely lift and that unfinished edge, echoed on the hat’s wide hatband, contrasted well with the smooth silk of Märtha’s jacket. With diamond chandelier earrings and an ecru and blush striped dress, it was a great look for her.

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As this was Countess Stéphanie de Lannoy’s first major royal event (she and Hereditary Grand Duke Guillaume would marry five months later), it wasn’t a surprise that she dipped into her future mother-in-law’s closet for a hat. This grey pleated silk abaca headpiece by Fabienne Delvigne requires some millinery courage to pull off and while I wasn’t thrilled about its pairing with this grey bouclé jacket, Stéphanie still wore it well.

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The King’s sisters were all in attendance, Princess Margaretha in a grey pillbox with side bow, Princess Birgitta in a white rose fascinator and Princess Désirée in a red Garbo hat with relaxed brim. Princess Christina wore a disc headpiece in navy straw painted with white Swiss dots, edged in white binding and trimmed with navy and white feathers (see a better view of it at Crown Princess Victoria’s 40th birthday celebration here).

Princess Christina’s daughter-in-laws, Emma Magnussen, Vicky Andren and Frida Bergström were all in attendance. Emma’s navy crin headpiece featured a birdcage-style transparent brim and was studded in slim feathers. Vicky’s taupe straw hat was trimmed in a triple stacked hatband with straw flower and goose feathers on the side.

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Frida Bergström (4th row, far left) wore a loden green pillbox hat swathed in a gold dotted net veil. Also seen in the photo above are Countess Marianne Bernadott (3rd row, far left in front of Frida) in a mint green brimmed hat (see a better view at a later wearing here) and Dagmar von Arbin (4th row, 4th from left) in a purple straw pillbox studded with silk flowers (see a better view at Prince Oscar’s christening here). After the palate of very pale neutrals we saw in the first post, the brighter spring hues seen in the photo above give some welcome vibrancy to this event!

Nearly a decade on, which hats stand out most to you from this event?  To see hats worn by Princess Estelle’s family members and godparents, jump over to this post. 

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Photos from Getty as indicated; SVT and the Swedish Monarchy

Milestone Birthday: Queen Máxima

Queen Máxima celebrates a half century of life today, a milestone that requires a dive into her millinery closet to look at some of her many memorable hats:

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There’s such diversity of shape, scale, colour and style in Máxima’s millinery wardrobe, and I’m sure you join me not only in wishing her a happy birthday, but in thanking her for the courage and willingness to experiment that makes it so fun to follow her hats.