Winning Hats: Curious Trends at Royal Ascot

Hats can really change the way you look – depending on whether you’re dressed in something classically elegant, somewhat mysterious, or totally outrageous. The elegant look works best for weddings, but at Royal Ascot it’s admissible to go a bit over the top – so long as the crown of your head is covered.  In my opinion, Ascot hats should be fun, as well as being stylish, of course. A hat can reflect your personality, and allow you to indulge your creativity.

I have quite a large collection of hats myself, including everything from vintage floral numbers to extravagant turbans. I sewed a diamante necklace onto one of my turbans, so it hangs dramatically over one eye. I once wore a Stetson hat (in aqua blue, covered in fake yellow raindrops) to Royal Ascot. Last year I wore an ostrich feather hat made for me by British couturier Nicholas Oakwell, who actually started out as a milliner. A bit of home embellishment is also very satisfying. I like to recycle hats by adding hair slides… or curiosities like stuffed birds. Why not? Above all, I like my hats to be works of art.

Crusades millinery

ShopCurious spotted the trend for head covering in 2008 and commented on veils/balaclavas and headdresses a little later. Now millinery students at Kensington and Chelsea College have got a Crusades look going on in their 2014 final collections (see above and below).

Crusades head wear

Crusades headpiece

Knights Templar style balaclava

Barcoded hats are definitely out, unless they’re unique, like the QR coded example (above top), spotted a couple of years ago. This year, we’ll be looking for original, handcrafted Knights Templar inspired hats at Royal Ascot. And we’re especially curious to see any matching outfits.



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