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Duchess Catherine, Kate Middleton

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Has the fashion world lost its fascination with fascinators? If we're to believe milliner Philip Treacy, the man behind the hard-to-miss hats seen on the likes of everyone from Kate Middleton to Lady Gaga, the era of the towering topper is over.  

"The fascinator is dead and I'm delighted," the designer declared to the Sunday Times. "The word fascinator sounds like a dodgy sex toy and what's so fascinating about a fascinator?"

But wait a minute—didn't we just see fascinator fan Middleton flaunting one of the headpieces—and her adorable baby bump!—earlier this week? And if the Kate factor is any indication, the duchess' influence means these hats aren't going anywhere!

And frankly, we couldn't be happier. The over-the-top toppers are bold, head-turning and usually one-of-a-kind pieces—a fab fashion trifecta. And since Treacy asked, here are six other reasons we take our hats off to the haute accessory: 

1. Instant Elegance: Is there anyone quite as classy as the fashionable duchess? Her tasteful taupe topper added the perfect final flourish to her ladylike look when recently visiting the National Review of Queens Scouts. And if there's a surefire way to channel the ravishing royal's look, it's to don her go-to accessory. 

Sarah Jessica Parker

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2. Confidence Boosters: Admit it. It takes a gutsy gal to step out in an ornate fascinator, so we applaud women like Sarah Jessica Parker who strutted her stuff in a lime green hat featuring fab foliage with unapologetic aplomb at the London premiere of Sex and the City

Kate Winslet

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3. Stunning Statement Pieces: Necklaces, earrings and other trinkets become totally unnecessary when you rock a feather in your cap, à la Kate Winslett, who elevated a simple chic Alexander McQueen ensemble with this quirky cute Natalie Ellner for Elsewhere feathered fascinator when receiving a CBE honor from the Queen. 

Lady Gaga

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4. Works of Art: Who wants a beanie, beret or fedora, when fascinators are essentially wearable works of art? Lady Gaga made a serious style statement on the streets of London back in 2011 when she stepped out in a Treacy hat that we can just as easily see at a modern art museum as we can on someone's fashion-forward head. 

Dita Von Teese

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5. Va-Va-Volume Builders: Suffer from lifeless, stick-straight hair? There's nothing like a sky-high hat, such as Dita Von Teese's oversize rose-shaped accessory, to distract from a bad hair day—and add a little drama above the neck!

Princess Beatrice

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6. They're Conversation Starters: You may not have been a fan of Princess Beatrice's Philip Treacy hat at the royal wedding, but the outrageous piece probably got you talking. Second only to Kate Middleton's gorgeous Alexander McQueen gown, the bold beige creation was probably the most buzzed about fashion item at the ceremony.

Are  you a fan of fascinators? 

PHOTOS: Check out celebs in hats