This week is Royal Ascot, a series of horse races attended by the British royal family in an annual photo op so stereotypically posh that it’s practically beyond parody. This year, Queen Maxima of the Netherlands rode in Queen Elizabeth II’s carriage on opening day. On Maxi’s head? Great, great question.
Lavish, outlandish hats are, of course, a staple of Royal Ascot—hats are required by the dress code, and you can’t just wear a fascinator, either. Hence the event is really just a parade of expensive, beautiful, custom-made hats. Elizabeth wore one of her usual bright floral ensembles, but that wasn’t enough for Maxima. Maxima went big. It looks like a flock of beige butterflies alit on her head. Or maybe they’re moths? Hungry, sinister moths?
This is not Maxima’s first piece of outrageous headgear; as Town and Country reported:
It’s the jewelry that links this Maxima outfit to the last time the Queen of the Netherlands knocked our socks off: at a Buckingham Palace state banquet this past fall. Banquets always bring out the tiaras, but even when compared to Queen Elizabeth and Camilla’s stunning sparklers, Queen Maxima’s Stuart Tiara easily took the cake. The pile of oversized diamonds nearly matched the height of her head.
Congrats to Queen Maxima on her incredible neck strength.