Hats off to the Duchess
Hats worn by Kate Middleton before she was married smash estimated auction prices, as fans grab the last chance to purchase items worn by the newest royal.
With the illustrious title of ‘Hat Person of the Year’ – granted in January 2012 by the Headwear Association – under her belt, it’s no surprise that Kate Middleton and hat enthusiasts, alike, will try and poach her fascinating (pardon the hat pun) style. And indeed, June saw a prime opportunity to poach an original Duchess of Cambridge hat from before she was married.
The two hats up for auction were rented by the ex-Kate Middleton for around £100 each from Get Ahead Hats in Reading. While the soon to be Duchess may have borrowed these hats for a margin of the full price both pieces of headwear were expected to sell for £1,000-£1,500 each. Fans of the royal beauty stood their ground, however, and the original auction prices and estimations were blown out of the park.
The first K-Mid piece – as the celebrity glossies are fond of calling her – was a black Philip Somerville creation with black and white feather detail. This little number was donned by the then-Middleton to watch Prince William be presented with the Order of the Garter by Her Majesty in 2008. It may be small in size but it sold for at auction £3,224.
The second piece of fashion frippery was a large black feathered piece by Aurora. Worn by Kate to the wedding of friend Harry Meade in October 2010 – shortly before she and Prince William publicly announced their engagement – the stunning accessory sold for £3,720.
Yet if you expect to see these hats parading round by well known faces on the celeb circuit, think again. Both were purchased by one anonymous bidder. With the rental receipts and diary entries showing her appointments in the store also auctioned off with the hats, the memory of them will remain in ‘papped’ picture form for most Kate fans.
The hats may also have been the last opportunity fans of the Duchess will have to purchase items worn by her. Now that she is married to Prince William, auction houses are unable to put items of her wardrobe up for sale. As the hats were only rented by the Duchess they were a rare opportunity to capture some of Kate’s cupboard magic. Part of the same ‘Passion for Fashion’ auction held by Kerry Taylor last year, this year’s hats were a more tame set of items up for sale, in comparison to last year’s £78,000 ‘see through’ dress that delighted the paps when Kate attended a University of St Andrews fashion show.
With an address book bulging with stylists and designers desperate to deck out the Duchess, at least we can guarantee Kate won’t disappoint in the wardrobe stakes, even if we can’t get our hands on them.
Picture credit: Chris Ison/PA Images