The zaniest topper to debut on the hat scene since the introduction of the Kangol cap has a new owner. The hat Princess Beatrice wore to her cousin William’s wedding at London’s Westminster Abbey last month sold for $131,341 (81,100 pounds) in a two-week eBay-sponsored charity auction that ended on Sunday.
Bidding was vigorous for the tea-rose silk Philip Treacy creation, spiralling upwards from an opening bid of $8,229 when it first hit the auction block on May 12. Beatrice, 22, is the oldest of Prince Andrew’s two daughters with Duchess of York Sarah Ferguson. She says she was inspired to hock the contraption after becoming entranced with what a cult phenomenon it became. The taupe hat drew so much attention when Beatrice donned it for the April 29 wedding of Prince William and Princess Catherine, it inspired its own Facebook page — “Princess Beatrice’s Ridiculous Royal Wedding Hat” – attracting nearly 140,000 fans.
The winning bidder has not been identified, but beat out 40 other bidders for Beatrice’s chuckleworthy Philip Treacy Original. The hat’s new owner gets free shipping for the chapeau, which is described on the eBay site as “pre-owned.” But he or she should be prepared: There will be no returns or refunds.
Proceeds from the sale of the hat will be split between two charities: the United Nations Children’s Fund, UNICEF, and the British charity Children in Crisis.