Sophie dishes up a feather hat-trick as the Queen looks resplendent in pink at Westminster Abbey

Sophie dishes up a feather hat-trick as the Queen looks resplendent in pink at Westminster Abbey

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UPDATED:

02:40 GMT, 13 March 2012

From one angle it looks like she's got a satellite dish attached to her head.

From the other the hat mimics a bird displaying its feathers in an extravagant courtship ritual.

The Countess of Wessex certainly took the prize yesterday for the most extravagant hat as members of the Royal Family attended a service to mark Commonwealth Day.

Mixed reception: The Countess of Wessex in her 'dish' hat and showing the feathers on the other side

Mixed reception: The Countess of Wessex in her 'dish' hat and showing the feathers on the other side

Mixed reception: The Countess of Wessex in her 'dish' hat and showing the feathers on the other side

In contrast, the Queen and Duchess of Cornwall were far more conservative with their choice of headgear at Westminster Abbey.

Camilla sported a bright purple hat with a floral design sitting atop to match her dress.

The Queen, who is head of the Commonwealth, wore a bright pink Peter Enrione dress with a pink cashmere coat and matching hat by Angela Kelly.

The packed event in celebration of the British Commonwealth was attended by more than 1,000 school children and leaders of UK faiths.

Resplendent in pink: The Queen Elizabeth arrives at Westminster Abbey to attend the annual Commonwealth Day Observance Service

Resplendent in pink: The Queen Elizabeth arrives at Westminster Abbey to attend the annual Commonwealth Day Observance Service

The guests were treated to a number
of performances from artists throughout the Commonwealth – including a
version of Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah by Canadian singer Rufus
Wainwright.

In a pre-recorded message of unity
played to the congregation, the Queen celebrated the 'creative genius'
of artists from different cultures.

She said: 'Our circumstances and
surroundings may vary enormously, for example in the food we eat and the
clothes we wear, but we share one humanity, and this draws us all
together.

The Duchess of Cornwall, in purple, accompanied The Queen at the outing

The Duchess of Cornwall, in purple, accompanied The Queen at the outing

Resplendent in pink: The Queen arrives at Westminster Abbey today

The Queen at today's service

Resplendent in pink: The Queen arrives for the annual Commonwealth Observance at Westminster Abbey accompanied by the Duke of Edinburgh, and is also pictured leaving the service

Dazzling: The Queen smiled broadly as she was greeted by church dignitaries

Dazzling: The Queen smiled broadly as she was greeted by church dignitaries

The Queen leaves Westminster Abbey with the Very Reverend Dr John Hall (fifth right), the Dean of Westminster after the ceremony

The Queen leaves Westminster Abbey with the Very Reverend Dr John Hall (fifth right), the Dean of Westminster after the ceremony

The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall also attended the service, which had a theme of Connecting Cultures

The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall also attended the service, which had a theme of Connecting Cultures

The Duchess of Cornwall wore a vibrant purple dress and jacket suit with a Philip Treacy feathered hat, and accessorised with floral brooches

The Countess of Wessex wore a taupe silk coat over a black dress, set off with a stunning feathered hat

The Duchess of Cornwall wore a vibrant purple dress and jacket with a Philip Treacy hat, while the Countess of Wessex wore a taupe silk coat over a black dress, set off with a stunning feathered hat

The singing waitress

'The joys of celebration and sympathy of sadness may be
expressed differently but they are felt in the same way the world over.'

The Commonwealth theme this year,
Connecting Cultures, marks the Diamond Jubilee with a digital history
project run by the Royal Commonwealth Society, the Jubilee Time Capsule
which collects memories from across the globe.

So far 28,000 entries have been
received from people in 49 countries, with the capsule due to be sealed
later in the year and presented to the Queen.

PRETTY IN PINK: THE QUEEN'S COLOURFUL PAST

Head-to-toe hot pink is not an unusual choice for the Queen. It is a colour that she has worn to great effect on countless previous occasions. Here are some of her best pink outfits…

Wowing the crowds on the first day of her Diamond Jubilee tour last week (and outshining the Duchess of Cambridge at the same time)

Pairing a bright pink wool coat with a warm fur hat on a trip to a museum in Riga, Latvia in 2009

Wowing the crowds on the first day of her Diamond Jubilee tour last week (and outshining the Duchess of Cambridge at the same time) and, right, on an earlier occasion with fur accessories but the same shoes

Visiting the Queen Mary II liner at Southampton port in 2004

Visiting the Queen Mary II liner at Southampton port in 2004

At a Golden Jubilee garden party in 2002

On a visit to Blois in France wearing an outfit designed by Ian Thomas

Left, at a Golden Jubilee garden party in 2002, and right, on a visit to Blois in France wearing an outfit designed by Ian Thomas