I'm delighted to share with you the process of making this bespoke hat, which was for my client Kate.




At her initial consultation, Kate brought in her dress, together with electric blue shoes.


Kate tried on several shapes before we selected a style with low crown & wide brim. This perfectly balanced the wide skirt of Kate's dress & emphasised the Dior-look.

I suggested a trim that echoed the flower detail on Kate's skirt, Kate confirmed her order and I kept her dress for colour-matching.


Silks were ordered for the trim and sinamay for the base. I dyed the sinamay to match the electric blue of Kate's shoes & dress detail.


With the materials prepared, I set to work on blocking the crown and brim.


I next joined the crown & brim together. For this design, I trimmed the brim slightly narrower than my hatblock to best suit Kate's proportions.



At this stage I often ask a client in for a fitting - Kate had already tried a sample at exactly the right fit, so I was able to replicate it without seeing her again.


I added a silk edging and band to the crown to give the hat extra definition, soften the blue and to bring in a block of the skirt colour.

The trim included several different feather types which I dyed & trimmed.


I used traditional antique flower irons to form petals & make flowers based on the floral print on Kate's skirt



Kate was happy for me to design the trim without her input, but I e-mailed a "mock-up" of the design with the trimmings placed on the hat before sewing, to give her opportunity to make any adjustments.


With Kate's approval of the design, I completed the work by hand-stitching the trim to the hat. Using thread rather than glue gives Kate the option of having her hat re-trimmed for another occasion.


A close-up of the finished design, ready for Kate to collect.