It's the MOOOOOOOST wonderful TIIIIIIIIIME of the YEAR!
Yes, hatters, that's right: Happy Hat Christmas to you! Today's the first day of the 2012 Royal Ascot week, and we've got a royal turnout! (Not a right royal turnout -- no Bea, no Kate, no Soph, no Zsa-Zsa, no Zara, no Autumn. SIGH. Crossing my fingers for Ladies' Day...)
But the Big Cheese was certainly there!
When I first saw a teensy-tiny photo of this hat, I got really excited -- a pattern! On the Queen's hat! How novel! But then I looked closer...
... and realized someone had just pulled an old fishnet stocking over the hat. Ho-hum. A bit 1970s arts-and-crafts, no?
Our first big Hat Christmas Party Foul came courtesy Camilla, who trotted out her woodshop creation again. So soon, Camilla? Ten points from Gryffindor for improper hattery spacing.
Also a bit disappointing: Eugenie's two-toned granny pillbox beret. Not exactly the Yorkie Ascot panache I was hoping for! I really, really hope that no one has told the Yorksters that they are Grown Ups Now and that the royal wedding was their last wacky hattery hurrah. Please please please let it not be true!
But there were a few bright spots in the hattery hit parade today:
One of them, for the second consecutive day, was Lady Gloucester -- hooray for Birgitte! This is a hat we've seen before, and just try to pretend the Elizabethan collar isn't there (clearly she was on her way to try out for a spot in one of the Westminster Abbey boys' choirs after the races), but it's a good one. Jaunty, elegant, two thumbs up!
Another was the first of our annual Ascot Haya Sightings! She's working the heck out of that Dior dress, and I like that she's gone a little crazy with her hat this year -- good to see her stepping out of the overly mature safe zone.
WILL WONDERS NEVER CEASE? It's Princess Anne in a GOOD HAT at ASCOT! I repeat, A GOOD HAT AT ASCOT!!! I think we've experienced a true Hat Christmas miracle here today, hatters. Praise Ascot!
More from the races tomorrow -- here's hoping for a few more royals in the rotation!
PHOTO CREDITS: (1) Eamonn McCormack/Getty Images, (2) Danny Martindale/Getty Images, (3) REUTERS/Stefan Wermuth, (4) Danny Martindale/Getty Images, (5) Danny Martindale/Getty Images, (6) CARL COURT/AFP/Getty Images, (7) Eamonn McCormack/Getty Images, (8) REUTERS/Stefan Wermuth