Is it best to buy the outfit or the hat first?
Hats are key to any outfit. Everyone will notice this item. I would advise you to get your outfit organised and then decide on your hat and other accessories. When wearing a hat, I wouldn’t wear fussy earrings and always tie hair back.
Are there any hard-and-fast rules for buying a hat?
If you don’t feel confident in a hat, it is not the right hat for you!
Are there any constraints when designing a hat?
Hats come in all different shapes and sizes and the range of trimmings used in millinery is huge. You can go for fancy feathers that flow in the wind, crystals and beads to add glitz or structure with straws and crin – horsehair.
What type of hat should you wear to formal occasions like weddings or christenings?
Attending a wedding or christening you are a guest, so I would keep the hat quite conservative and smart. A hat must be comfortable as you are wearing it all day. If you have spent money on an outfit, it’s only right to spend money on a hat as this is what people will notice first.
Ascot is famous for its hats. What tips do you have for wearing a hat to Ascot?
Hats are a must if you want to attend Royal Ascot, and quite right, too! You can be as flamboyant and as colourful as you like, I think, as it is a great summer event where you don’t have to worry about outdoing the bride. Ascot is great for hats that stand out and are full of colour and full of fun.
Should your hat match your outfit?
If you are purchasing a custom-made hat, then yes, as you want people to know that you haven’t just bought one off the shelf. You want it to match but I don’t think hats have to be the exact same colour. It’s quite nice to introduce a contrasting colour hat and pick up the colour of the outfit in the trim.
Is there a certain hairstyle that looks best with a hat?
I advise hair to be worn up with hats and to show your neck as I think it makes the hat stand out and looks more chic.
Do certain face shapes need a specific style of hat?
Everyone is different and has their own style and way of wearing things that they think suits them. I would say that when it comes to what hat to wear to suit your face shape, you have to try hats on. If you are quite petite I wouldn’t put you in a large brimmed hat as this would completely drown you. A smaller hat that perches on the side of your face will elongate you and make you look more elegant.
What advice do you have for someone looking to buy their first hat?
If you are not a regular hat wearer and have decided to invest in a hat, I would advise you to go with one that matches a lot of your outfits, perhaps a hat in a neutral colour. A lot of first-time hat wearers say they are not hat people, but there are so many different shaped hats that there is one to suit everyone. A hat also finishes off an outfit so, whether you are going for a casual day out or to a glamorous wedding, it is a key accessory to wear.
How should you look after your hat?
When storing your hat it should be kept wrapped up in tissue paper in a hat box so that it keeps its shape and doesn’t get squashed.
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