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Marion Lowe the designer behind HATS by Emelle
How and when did you start in Millinery?
I have always had hobbies in sewing, weaving, crochet etc and love texture, threads and colour. Nine years ago, following a bereavement I needed something different, challenging and colourful to shift my focus. At a craft show I saw some beautiful hats and made comment on them to the stall holder. I was introduced to his wife who had made them and offered short courses. I signed up within a week and travelled daily to do the two-day course. I came away thrilled, excited, and totally hooked on making hats and headpieces.
I am predominantly self-taught with the help of some online video tuition and a lot of help and advice from other enthusiastic milliners across the world. Through millinery online groups I have made long lasting friendships locally and across the world both as online contacts and meetings in person.
What inspires you when designing?
I am inspired by nature, colour, shapes, and textures. I find ideas pour into my mind as I start a new headpiece, and these are influenced by the occasion the hat is for as well as. In bespoke cases, the customer’s physical appearance, colourings, size and personality. For inspiration you only need to open your eyes and look around wherever you are.
What type(s) of headwear do you design?
I mainly design headwear for weddings – mothers of the bride/groom, wedding guests. Also, I enjoy working with more freedom on designs for Ladies Day and Racing events as well as for award ceremonies, Royal Garden parties and special occasions.
What is your advice to anyone wanting to buy a new hat?
My advice is always to take the opportunity to try different styles to find the piece which feels comfortable and secure. Take time to do this in an environment where there is no sales pressure. My customers often take pleasure in finding their preferred style before even buying their whole outfit. Then a bespoke hat can be made to compliment the colour/style of the ensemble. So many people do not believe they can wear a hat and only ever buy one for a very special event. There is always a hat to suit anyone if they take advice and encouragement from a good milliner.
Why did you join MillineryHUT?
MillineryHUT offers an easy to use site for buying/selling good quality and a wide variety of headwear. It offers the opportunity for a customer to go straight to various Brands and not to have to wade through endless knitted beanies, baby bobble hats or mass-produced straw hats.
It offers milliners of various experience the chance to display and describe their work on a site sympathetic to reaching out to prospective millinery customers. It allows its Milliners to concentrate on their design and creating without having to spend hours and hours marketing their product and searching for a way to reach customers.