I really believe that accessories can go a long way to making an outfit complete. Hats have the power to elevate an outfit, providing that all important final flourish. Original vintage hats in good condition can sometimes be difficult to obtain, which is why reproduction hats are so appealing.
The Heritage Milliner is a UK based label, specialising in authentically styled women’s hats. Owner of the label Karen, produces hats based on vintage styles, with particular focus on the 1930s and 1940s.
As the owner of a few original vintage hats, I know how difficult it can be to find particular styles. Original pieces can sometimes be distorted out of shape, trims may be missing or damaged, and (usually the case with earlier styles of the 1920s); the fit may be extremely small. However, choosing a style of hat from the Heritage Milliner was a completely different experience for me. Firstly, Karen worked with me in order to decide on the style, main colour, trims, and any additional design details.
If you have an outfit or colour in mind that you would like to match – the Heritage Milliner can make that possible! I actually met Karen in ‘real life’, at the Festival of Vintage up in York. Whilst at the festival, I purchased a 1940s suit jacket in a lovely duck egg blue. I showed Karen the jacket, and decided that it would be so lovely to have a hat to match – so we designed a hat together! The end result is absolutely beautiful – but that is perhaps for another blog post a bit later on.
For this hat, I thought it would be a good idea to keep the trims minimal, and to stick to harmonising tones. The russet shade works beautifully with many colours – navy, as pictured, browns, yellows, greens, etc etc. I was tempted to go for a yellow hat (OF COURSE I WAS. I am obsessed with yellow after all), but I then thought it would be a better idea to go for a tone that I knew would work across the board.
This particular hat is called the Winnie style, fashioned from russet felt with brandy petersham trimming. As this style of hat is intended to perch on the head, there is elastic on the inside in order to secure it in place. I must admit, I was dubious about the elastic, as I have never really found it to be useful in my other hats. BUT – somehow Karen has figured out the perfect placement and length of the elastic to make it an excellent fit! I placed a hair grip either side of the elastic just to ensure it didn’t slip, and finished with a hat pin (which I purchased from Karen).
I highly recommend having a look at the Heritage Milliner’s website & store (details below). The quality of this hat and indeed the other hat I ordered are incredible. Currently, there are some styles ready-made available from the Heritage Milliner’s eBay store. For custom orders, allow 2-3 weeks. As I was unsure on what design or type of trimming I wanted for this hat & my other one, I let Karen decide to go ahead with whatever she thought would look best. Both hats look incredible, and – Karen encourages each customer to be unique and individual. This warms my heart, as part of the allure of true vintage is the level of uniqueness it affords. The Heritage Milliner allows customers to express their individual style & tastes – using high quality materials and techniques. I for one, shall definitely be placing more orders in the future!
The Heritage Milliner Details
- Find the Heritage Milliner’s website here
- eBay store here
- Interview with Karen at 12mins.24secs in here (For mobile devices, view here instead)
- Hat – c/o The Heritage Milliner – Winnie style
- Suit – TopRunway on eBay
- Blouse – The Seamstress of Bloomsbury
- Brooch – Original 1940s
- Gloves – Charity Shop
- Shoes – Gift
And lastly, I couldn’t resist including this picture of Kieren and I (the advantages of having a self-timer on the camera!) Kieren is wearing a beautifully tailored suit from Chester Cordite. Earlier in the year, we visited Chester Cordite’s HQ to sort out Kieren’s wedding suit. We were so impressed with the quality, cut and workmanship of the suits & shirts, that Kieren ordered this additional suit (the wedding suit has been squirreled away until the wedding!)
Disclaimer – the hat pictured and featured in this blog post I received in exchange for review purposes. The additional hat mentioned I purchased myself, and as mentioned, I’m sure I will be purchasing more in the future!
Until next time dears!