Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?

March 17, 2019

GUEST DIARY• BY: KAREN KLOPP AND HILARY DICK

We continue From Our Archives, this week is a look back at the all the way we chose to cover our heads. This article first appear in New York Social Diary.

It is the season of spring and giddy with delight as a gal’s head is easily turned to a new spring bonnet! The hat is an essential accessory for Passover, Easter, the Hat Lunch, graduations, race days, and anytime you fancy a chapeau, really.  As the ol’ song goes; “In your Easter Bonnet, with all the frills upon it, you’ll be the finest lady in the Easter Parade.” To get in the mood, watch this delightful clip from Easter Parade,  a 1948 musical film starring Judy Garland and Fred Astaire, featuring music by Irving Berlin.



The Easter Parade tradition began after the Civil War when fine folks would promenade down Fifth Avenue in their finest frocks and finer frock coats following fervent religious services.  It was more of a splendiferous stroll to see and be seen, than an actual parade. The tradition caught on with New Yorkers and in its heyday attracted more than a million celebrants!


Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?

Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?

The tradition continues today, known as the Hat Parade and Bonnet Festival,  but as a less demure and well-attended version, as some revelers have reverted to gimmicks, costumes, and other attention-getting behaviors.  From 49th to 57th Street, beginning at 10:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m., you can watch or participate in the sensation of the stroll. Dressing up for Easter in your “Sunday Best” is not a new idea.  In the 4th Century, Roman Emperor Constantine I declared that to honor the Resurrection, his subjects were to dress in extravagant new threads. Could this be what he had in mind?


Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?

Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?

Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?

Bill Cunningham, a fan of the Easter Parade, was delighted by all that was wacky and wonderful about it.  Perhaps due to his early career as a milliner, as he so delightfully describes in his memoir. It is a poignant read of a time that seems so long ago.


Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?

Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?

Hilary will be in Palm Beach for the holiday.  Let’s see what she will be wearing  … and doing …

I grew up spending Easter in Florida with my family. We would dye eggs and have a big Easter Egg hunt on the lawn.  My Grandfather would hide a special egg with money inside which added to the fun. And with my Grandmother having the name Bunnie, there were always lots of decorative bunnies everywhere!


Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?
977 North Ocean Boulevard, façade entrance. Situated on one-acre of direct oceanfront, Bunny and Nicky du Pont’s house was approached by a protected driveway leading into a motor court. Known by the duPonts as Casuarina, fashion arbiter Eugenia Sheppard called it “The Barefoot House.”
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?
Valerian Rybar’s colorful interior for Nick and Bunny du Pont was photographed by Horst and featured in Vogue in 1965.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?
A view from the living room towards the ocean. Despite not having any formal training in interior decoration, Valerian Rybar’s clients included Suzy, Guy and Marie-Helene de Rothschild, Prentice Cobb Hale, Herbert Von Karajan, Antenor and Beatriz Patino, Samuel and Mitzi Newhouse, Sao Schlumberger, Christina Onassis, and Stavros Niarchos. More commercial projects involved the Tropicana Hotel, Las Vegas, a Valentino salon, Paris, El Morocco nightclub, New York, and the Tres Vidas resort, Acapulco.

Those days are long gone but we still celebrate, dye eggs and have a big delicious lunch with of course … deviled eggs and Bunnies on the table. I usually wear a dress and I thought this bright floral is appropriately covered but feminine. White sandal slides, a neutral handbag and a fun puka shell ring as a nod to the tropics finish the look. And of course don’t forget sunglasses and the perfect Easter Bonnet.



Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?
Rixo Abigail Floral Silk Wrap, $375.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?
Chloé Oversized Round Frame Sunglasses, $400.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?
Eugenia Kim Grosgrain Trimmed Straw Hat, $435.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?
Tohum Puka Gold-Plated And Shell Ring, $410.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?
Loeffler Randall Pompom Raffia Clutch, $195.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?
Alexandre Vauthier Knotted Leather Mules, $805.

And speaking of Spring Bonnets, it is always fun to peruse the New York Social Diary photos of the Central Park Conservancy Frederick Law Olmstead Luncheon, a spring ritual that has come to be known as the “Hat Lunch.” And to discover who’s who in hat design.


Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear? Hilary Dick & Kathy Prunis.
L. to r.: Hilary wears Kokin well; Kathy Prounis’ hat by Barbara Fineman Millinery was made using flowers from her dress.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?Lorry Newhouse, Stephanie Newhouse.
Designer Lorry Newhouse and her daughter-in-law Stephanie Newhouse wore hats by James McGann, who designs for Lorry’s company.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear? Gillian Miniter's
Gillian Miniter’s Eric Javits hat was a beehive.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear? Kamie Lightburn
Kamie Lightburn’s hat was a vintage Alexander McQueen crown for Givenchy Couture.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?Lisa Dardan
Lisa Dargan adorned her Philip Treacy headpiece with a taxidermied parakeet from her chandelier.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear? Elizabeth Belfer
Elizabeth Belfer matched her Leah C. fascinator to the colors in her Lyn Devon dress.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?Erick Javits & Allison Rockefeller
Eric Javits & Allison Rockefeller, wearing an Eric Javits hat.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear? DI MONDO
Di Mondo in an Eric Javits hat.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?

I have decided to do a little hat shopping and took myself to some of the best hat shops in the city.  First stop is Suzanne’s Couture Millinery at 136 East 61 Street.  Many of her hats appear at the Central Park Conservancy Luncheon. Her designs are a marvel of whit and whimsy. Several times I have run into the shoppe on the day before and always seem to find the perfect creation.


Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear? Robyn Joseph
Robyn Joseph in Suzanne Milinery.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear? Meg Braff
Meg Braff in Suzanne Milinery.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear? Pam Stowe
Pam Stowe’s feathery hat was by Suzanne Millinery.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear? Genie
Genie’s designed her beehive hat with milliner Ruby Innis of Ruby & Cordelia’s Millinery.

Deborah Roberts and Peggy Bitler introduced me to Christine Moore, another talented hat designer and very popular with the girls. If you can’t get to her showroom, at 110 East 34th Street, you can call or email her about a style you like on the website.


Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear? Kimberly Chandler & Deborah Roberts
Kimberly Chandler & Deborah Roberts.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear? Karen Klopp
Karen Klopp wearing a black & white hat by Christine A. Moore.

And you should know The Madder Hatters, Diana Niles King and Belle McIntyre.  Their name says it all and they customize with great panache.


Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?  Diana Niles King, Belle McIntyre
The Madder Hatters Diana Niles King and Belle McIntyre.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?
Trying on Madder Hatters hats.

Well here is the burning question  — a hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?  The answer depends on your ensemble, the occasion, the temperature, and what you prefer.  For the Hat Lunch, it is fun to go all out but if you are going to a graduation, you would probably wear a sun hat.


Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear? Pam Taylor
Pam Taylor in a Sun Hat.

This time last year, in our NYSD article, What to Wear to the Royal Wedding, I chose a fascinator, while Hilary went all out in this fabulous hatinator. I like both styles because they are usually on a headband and contain combs which keep them in place, as well as cooler and more comfortable. The function they serve is decorative.   

Hilary’s Hatinator –


Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?

KK Fascinator –


Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?

Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear? Blair Hussain
Blair Husain got her Aoife Harrison hat in Ireland.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?  Eleanora Kennedy & Anna Safir
Eleanora Kennedy & Anna Safir.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?  Couri Hay & Janna Bullock
Couri Hay and Janna Bullock.

Whereas a fabulous hat is ultimately more wearable as it screens the sun and disguise a bad hair day.  But please, will someone tell the men how to kiss a woman wearing a hat? Either not at all, or duck under the hat to avoid bumping into the brim. This approach can be quite tricky so I would recommend the former suggestion.


Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear? Martha Glass & James Gregory
Martha Glass & Jamee Gregory.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear? Karen Karlsrud & Deban Flexner
Karen Karlsrud & Deban Flexner.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?  Hilary Geary Ross & Blaine Trump
Hilary Geary Ross & Blaine Trump.

I will spend my Easter at the International Polo Club in Wellington, brunch with friends and watching an exciting high goal polo match.  When growing up, Easter was a very big deal in my family and I like to keep the tradition going by dressing up a bit and donning a bit of head candy.


Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator or a hatinator? What to wear?  Karen & John Klopp

Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator o  a hatinator? What to wear?   Sarah Colley & Eaddo Kiernan
Sarah Colley and Eaddo Kiernan.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator o  a hatinator? What to wear? Tom Schaffer , Amy Hoadley, Keller Henderson, Eleanora Kennedy
Tom Schaffer, Amy Hoadley, Keller Henderson, and Eleanora Kennedy.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator o  a hatinator? What to wear?  Chuck Poole , Katie Carpenter,  Bruce Langmaid
Chuck Poole, Katie Carpenter, and Bruce Langmaid.
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator o  a hatinator? What to wear?
Chuck Poole, Katie Carpenter, and Bruce Langmaid.

I found this garden party dress at Bergdorf’s. I was feeling floral and up it blossomed to me. I will be a staple of my spring wardrobe.  Perfect for a graduation!


Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator o  a hatinator? What to wear?
Samantha Sung Rachel Sharon Rose Floral-Print Crewneck  Sleeveless, $825

I will pair it with these seriously comfortable wedges for half time divot stomping.


Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator o  a hatinator? What to wear?
Jimmy Choo Alanah Leather Wedge Sandals, $550
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator o  a hatinator? What to wear?
Jimmy Choo Delila Vachetta Leather Wedge Slide Sandals, $550

I didn’t know that Bergdorf’s stocked so many hats online! Everything from a lovely classic …


Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator o  a hatinator? What to wear?
Rachel Trevor Morgan Natural Straw Mesh Sun Hat, $1250

To a fab, fancy  fascinator …


Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator o  a hatinator? What to wear?
Rachel Trevor Structure Disc & Bows Natural Straw Hat, $1225

You might not want to check the price tag on this hatinator.  Too divine!


Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator o  a hatinator? What to wear?
Jane Taylor Sinamay Sting  Ray Hat With Twisted Crin Trim, $2,020

Sunhat?  And it is packable!


Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator o  a hatinator? What to wear?
Eric Javits Woven Raffia Fringe Stun Hat, $325

Or a perfect Fedora …

Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator o  a hatinator? What to wear?
Eugenia Kim Harlowe Fedora Hat With Swarovski Pearl Bed Trim, $475

When wearing a hat, I tend to keep the accessories small.


Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator o  a hatinator? What to wear?
Le Specs Luxe Boom Slim Oval Metal & Plastic Sunglasses, $119
Karen Klopp and Hilary Dick article for New York Social Diary, A hat, a fascinator o  a hatinator? What to wear?
Jenifer Behr Grace Hand- Painted Flower Stud Earrings, $117

Hats off  to the Central Park Conservancy, The Women’s Committee and the park staff for all they do to keep our park the most wonderful and well cared for in the world.  Each year the park receives 35 million visitors, making the most visited urban park in the United States.

Consider becoming a member and do your part to maintain this vital and beloved New York resource!

Recent Posts