Guess Which Hat Has The Walnut Shell Underneath!

Illustration for article titled Guess Which Hat Has The Walnut Shell Underneath!

LONDON - June 11: Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall stand on the balcony of Buckingham Palace after the Trooping the Colour parade.

The ceremony of Trooping the Colour is believed to have first been performed during the reign of King Charles II. In 1748, it was decided that the parade would be used to mark the official birthday of the Sovereign. More than 600 guardsmen and cavalry make up the parade, a celebration of the Sovereign's official birthday, although the Queen's actual birthday is on 21 April.

Via Getty images.

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I still don't quite get the hats.

Anyone know the history behind the British elite ladies and their need for flamboyant hats? What is the significance of a notable hat? Do the hats represent wealth or status? Are there expensive specialty hat shops scattered throughout England? Are hats as popular with the rich and the royal in other European countries? My inquiring mind must know!