Queen Silvia celebrated Swedish National Day, along with the king, in Ludvika last Thursday in a repeated ivory felt calot hat with silk flower and brown feather trim. Festivities later in the day saw the Queen and adult princesses in folk costume with traditional white cotton folded hats.
Also on Thursday, Prince Harry was in uniform to preside over the annual Founder’s Day Parade at the Royal Hospital Chelsea (a retirement and nursing home for former members of the British Army). Royal Hospital residents, known as Chelsea Pensioners, wore their distinctive tri-corn hats.
On Thursday, Emperor Emeritus Akihito and Empress Emerita Michiko conducted rites related to the abdication at the Musashi Imperial Graveyard in Tokyo. The empress emerita repeated a slate grey veiled saucer with knotted bow.
On Saturday, members of the Imperial royal family attended the 5th anniversary memorial ceremony for Prince Katsura. The Imperial royal women, who included the Empress, the late Prince’s mother, Princess Yoriko and sister, Yasuko Konoe (formerly Princess Yasuko of Mikasa) all wore black hats.
On June 8th, the Imperial family attended the 5th anniversary memorial ceremony for Prince Katsura (Yoshihito) at Toshimagaoka Cemetery in Tokyo.
Also on Wednesday, Princess Mako celebrated her 27th birthday and was spotted arriving at the Imperial Royal Palace in Tokyo to visit her grandparents in a bumper hat covered in beige-pink patterned silk
Princess Mako turned 27 on October 23rd. She visited the Imperial Palace in the morning for birthday greetings with Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko. pic.twitter.com/JHQexd3meI
Princess Hisako, Princess Tsuguko, Noriko Senge, Sayako Kuroda, and other relatives watched Princess Ayako worship at the Three Palace Sanctuaries on October 26, 2018. 📷: NHK, FNN videos pic.twitter.com/oCI7X1raRb
This week had an abundance of state banquets (in Portugal, Fiji and the UK) with some stunning royal looks – including Queen Mathilde here and here, the Norwegian royals, the Danish Royals and Princess Ayako at the formal Choken-no-Gi ceremony- likely the last time we’ll see her in a tiara.
Princess Anne in more casual hats last weekend here and here to present awards and cheer on her daughter at the Gatcombe Horse Trials last weekend.
On Thursday, Sayako Kuroda (Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko’s daughter) was photographed at the Ise Jingu Grand Shrine in a white pillbox hat. The former Imperial princess became Chief Priestess of the Shrine in June.
Queen Elizabeth repeated her white straw hat with tweed and feather trim for church last Sunday while the Duchess of Cornwall repeated her taupe straw beret.
After being seduced by felt fall/winter hats last week, my eye was drawn this week to these more summery designs thanks to racing season which is in full swing in Australia! Here’s what caught my attention:
June 6 marked the fifth anniversary of the death of Prince Tomohito of Mikasa. As per tradition, a ‘grave festival’ was held at Toshima Oka cemetery in Tokyo. The Imperial family was led at this event by the late Prince Tomohito and Princess Nobuko’s daughters Princess Akiko and Princess Yoko; their grandmother, Princess Yuriko of Mikasa, Crown Prince Naruhito, Prince and Princess Akishino were also in attendance with the women in veiled black bumper hats and the men in morning dress, carrying silk top hats.
The event was also attended by former princesses Mrs. Sayako Kuroda (Prince Naruhito’s sister, the former Princess Nori) and Mrs. Noriko Senge (former Princess Noriko of Takamado) who repeated the dress code of pale grey dresses topped with black veiled bumper hats.
Today, a similar event was held at the same cemetery and shrine, this time to mark the third anniversary of the passing of Yoshihito, Prince Katsura. Similar black, veiled bumper hats were worn again for this event by Princess Yoriko of Mikasa (Prince Katura’s mother), Princess Kiko and Mrs. Sayako Kuroda. Again, Crown Prince Naruhito attended in morning dress, carrying a black silk top hat.
The attendance of Sayako Kurado and Noriko Senge at these events feels noteworthy. Since the 1947 Imperial Household Law, Japanese princesses have lost their royal status upon marriage – until recently, former princesses did not attend royal events and appeared to be completely cut off from their royal relations. While these were family events (and as such, follow different rules than official Imperial ones), Princess Mako’s upcoming engagement announcement has started chatter about revising this law to allow Imperial princesses to retain some of their status (especially with a single male in the current young generation). I can’t help but hope that the appearance of Sayako and Noriko this week is a sign that, at the very least, the inpterpretation of this law is starting to change.
This week marked the first anniversary since the passing of Prince Katsura. On Monday, members of the Japanese royal family gathered at the Imperial Cemetary in Tokyo to take part in a memorial service. The Imperial princesses paid respect in mourning dress with veiled black pillbox and bumper hats.
The late Prince’s parents, Prince Takahito and Princess Yuriko of Mikasa
Princess Yoko and Princess Akiko of Mikasa
Princess Tsuguko with her mother, Princess Hisako of Takamado
Princess Kiko, Prince Fumihito; Sayako Kuroda (previously Princess Sayako)
Crown Prince Naruhito and Crown Princess Masako
Yesterday, Princess Akiko, who acted as chief mourner at her uncle’s funeral last year, was joined by the Emperor and Empress for a visit to Prince Katsura’s tomb inside the Imperial Cemetery. For this traditional visit, Princess Akiko repeated a black silk pillbox hat with a blusher-length veil.