If you love fashion and adore a pretty hat, then may I suggest that you get yourself down to The Great Hat Exhibition, taking place in Central London from 22nd March – 28th March 2018.
The designs are all so different, that I wonder how they come up with the inspiration, I wouldn’t know where to begin, but after speaking to some milliners last time, they explain that the process is like any other creative work, inspiration can be a colour, a feeling, fabric or a straight-forward commission from a customer who requests a specific style.
Organised and curated by the lovely Monique Lee, founder of X Terrace, which is a fashion platform tailored to connect creatives in Europe with fast growing fashion companies worldwide this exhibition showcases 130 milliners from 30 countries, including Spain, USA, Korea, Ireland, Germany and Australia.
200 hats will be exhibited with a further 100 hats on display in the pop up shop – That’s 300 hats!
I was very lucky to be invited to the press preview last month to get a taster of some of the hats that have been selected to be showcased this year.
32 hats were on display and 4 models brought them to life on the mini catwalk and photo areas in Pinko Store in Knightsbridge.
Here are my Top 10 favourite hats from the preview collection in NO PARTICULAR ORDER;
1. Pink Cockatoo by Wendy Scully Millinery (Australia) www.wendyscully.com
This piece was inspired by Australia. A headpiece created to reflect the stunning colours and sense of flight of the Australian Pink Cockatoo. An icon of traditional Australian fauna, colour, noise, flight, freedom.
2. Controlled Chaos by Amy Fowler (USA) www.humboldthaberdashery.com
Inspired by the political and social culture of the United States, and is expressed with wired horsehair and ostrich quills.
3. Ice Swan by Tatiana Ashakova (Germany) www.beretkah.co.uk
Inspired by Russia. The love of Russian to winter, cold and ice. The moment of a sudden winter when fresh leaves and flowers are trapped in ice.
4. Untitled by Ana Bella Millinery (UK, Czech & Australia) www.anabellamillinery.co.uk
Inspired by Australia. A modern hat movement in Australia where ladies parade hats at racing events.
5. Xiao Long bao by Yuan Li London (UK) www.yuanli.london
Inspired by China. A favourite food in China – Mini steamed buns.
6. The Queen by Yooney Choi (Jungyoon Choi) (South Korea) www.yooneychoi.com
Inspired by South Korea. De-su is a hairstyle worn by the Queen at royal court ceremonies during Joseon times.
7. Close To The Sun by Shandana de la Riviere (UK) www.shandana.net
Inspired by United Kingdom. The British poet, Alfred, Lord Tennyson’s poem, “The Eagle”, which was first published in 1851 – the year of The Great Exhibition.
8. Golden Myrtle by Angie Jackman Millinery (Australia) www.angiejackman.com
Inspired by Australia. Australian native bush lands and the iconic Australian Eucalyptus tree.
9. Cultural Crown by Susan McArthur Millinery (Australia) www.susanmcarthur.com.au
Inspired by Afganistan. With my son engaged in military action in Afganistan I was inspired to create millinery which reflected ideas of protection and cultural diversity.
10. Kodogubako by Monique Lee Millinery (UK) www.moniquelee.uk
Inspired by Japan. An exquisite Japanese lacquer box in the Royal Collection acquired by Prince Alfred during his visit to Japan in 1869.
As you can see the range is very varied and the inspiration behind each hat is so interesting to explore.
I’m sure you must have seen something that you like, but as I said earlier, this is just a taste of the 300 hats on display at the actual event.
The Great Hat Exhibition 2018 – London Hat Week 2018 Exhibition and Pop Up Shop
Dates: 22nd – 28th March 2018
Place: The Living Centre, 2 Ossulston Street, London NW1 1DF
Nearest Tube: King’s Cross St. Pancras
Tickets: £7.50 concs/ £10 – Click here to purchase tickets
Grab your ticket and indulge in the celebration of amazing millinery designs from across the globe!