When I contemplate my fashion inspirations, three things immediately spring to mind: the ever elegant Audrey Hepburn, every Victorian lady who ever donned a House of Worth gown, and Queen Elizabeth II.
Queen Elizabeth’s fashion sense is timeless. Classic and feminine. Individual and iconic. The gloves, the jewels, the perfectly coordinated monochromatic ensembles, all worn with an air of grace and poise—and one, solitary, black patent purse.
While I admire every facet of the Queen’s style, my favorite has to be her seemingly endless hat collection. One that has been honored by the highest millinery authority. That’s right, dears. In 2014, Queen Elizabeth II was inducted into The Headwear Association Hall of Fame, the oldest trade association in the fashion industry, established in 1908. Talk about major #HatGoals!
Since this month marks the Queen’s 91st birthday (April 21), I thought it would be fun to celebrate by highlighting a selection of her many millinery masterpieces. Gather round old-fashioned fashionistas, it’s time for haute couture hats to go on parade!
Queen Elizabeth’s Hats on Parade
The first hat to march in our parade is a Diagonal Crown Hat, a style also affectionately known as the “Ski Slope” hat. This particular example is trimmed in cobalt lace that provides a brilliant contrast against the white base and echoes the color of the ensemble. Simply beautiful!
This Diagonal Crown Hat was designed by esteemed milliner, Rachel Trevor Morgan, who also creates pieces for Duchess Catherine Middleton. I love how the subtle, cream and pastel green pinstripe gives the hat depth and plays off the pop of forest green cording. A prefect hat to don on St. Patrick’s Day!
Yet again, the Queen favors a Diagonal Crown Hat. However, on this occasion a sassy shade of hot pink and matching powder-fluff of feathers makes a bold statement. “I am Queen. And I am FABULOUS!”
I am of the opinion that blue is the Queen’s best color, and this bright shade of turquoise only serves to convince me of the validity of this belief. How it draws attention to her blue eyes and makes them sparkle! And this particular Hourglass Hat with the bow is just darling!
Next to walk in our parade is the hat I believe would me most becoming . . . on myself. Because a girl can dream . . . and ought to dream . . . and oh, just LOOK. AT. IT!!! This white cloche with lavender tweed is most assuredly dreaming of springtime! *le sigh*
If one were to compare a hat with Fine China, then one would most certainly dub this powder blue number a piece of Wedgwood jasperware. The classic shape and dainty trim give this millinery masterpiece a simplified elegance. One perfectly suited for afternoon tea. I’ll ring for Harrison to bring a pot of Darjeeling and strawberry scones with clotted cream. *rings silver bell*
Here comes another Diagonal Crown Hat, marching along the parade route! This one is fashioned in a regal shade of purple and features a satiny black flower. Paired with the tweed coat, it makes for a perfect winter ensemble!
This Diagonal Crown piece by Rachel Trevor Morgan is the ballerina of hats. From the romantic hue of blush pink, to the exquisitely feminine design that stars a glittering prima brooch and corps de spray of feathers, this piece is on pointe!
Next we have a Split Crown Hat with short, cartwheel brims designed by milliner Angela Kelly. The crimson color immediately brings to mind a tube of classic, red lip-stick. Bold, yet utterly feminine!
I love the contrast on this Flat Brim Hat between the bright turquoise base and the dark navy lace trim! It makes a definite statement without overwhelming the eye. And of course, the Queen pairs it with her signature, black patent handbag.
To bring our parade to an end, I give thee this sapphire showstopper! Designed by Angela Kelly, this Tear Drop Crown Hat is unique in shape and classic in trimming with its single monochromatic feather. A millinery masterpiece that once again confirms my love of the Queen in blue!
Bonus Fashion Fact: That brooch photographed with the Tear Drop hat is a piece of Victorian history! The sapphire brooch, surrounded by 12 diamonds, was a gift from Prince Albert to Queen Victoria the day before their wedding on February 9, 1840. Victoria wore it on her big day and then constantly while Prince Albert was alive. Her daughter-in-law Queen Alexandra wore it at her coronation, and then it was passed to Queen Elizabeth in the year of her accession.
Which of the Queen’s hats is your favorite? I’d love to gush about millinery fashions with you in the comments section below! To enjoy more royal photos and some fanciful fascinators, pop over to Pinterest where I have boards for The British Monarchy and Millinery Masterpieces.