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Guest Blog Marie Hill Millinery

I have started a series of guest blogs with local Wedding Suppliers across Dumfries and Galloway. kicking things off this week is Marie Hill from Marie Hill Millinery.

"I have loved hats for as long as I can remember! I grew up on a farm in Bewcastle in Cumbria and spent many many hours admiring my granny Aurea's hat collection. Aurea Telford wore a hat nearly every day of her life and sparked a passion in me which took me down the route of becoming a milliner! I trained in Birmingham & established my business in Lockerbie in 2004 creating bespoke hats for all occasions.

I love nothing more than sitting down with clients & discussing and designing the perfect hat, headpiece or fascinator. Brides can also consult & design their bespoke piece for their special day. I feel I can judge what type of hat/headpiece/fascinator will suit and client so that their outfit is complemented. I design new collections every year & am happy to create new pieces to help my clients feel amazing whatever the event".

1. Do you make bespoke head pieces for Brides? If a bride approaches me and asked for a bespoke piece for her wedding I'm happy to do so. I don't advertise this in the same way as my hats/headpieces, but I have done many pieces over the years.

2. How long have you been a Milliner for? I have been a milliner for 16 years. Prior to that I was a qualified florist specialising in wedding flowers before going to work with my mum in the boutique in Lockerbie. During this time I realised I missed the creativeness I was afforded whilst doing floristry, so I retrained as a milliner as I always had a passion for all things millinery!

3. Can I try them on first to get an idea of how it will look on me? Anyone who has an event coming up is welcome to call into the boutique and try on all or any of the headpieces/hats I have in order to see what style suits. When this has been completed, if the client wants to commission a piece, we will discuss the colour & dressing and any personalised elements they wish to have.

A full hat commission requires 3 stages - Stage 1: Consultation, whereby style, colour & personalised elements; Stage 2: fitting so that hat fits properly & client is happy with size etc; Stage 3: Collection of finished piece & fitting of same to ensure client is satisfied with end product. If a client wishes to hire a headpiece, all dressing can be changed or added to suit what the client requires.

At the consultation stage, regardless of a commission or hire piece, time is spent with each client to assist & advise them on the perfect piece to compliment their outfit & face shape so that they can look their best at their special event.

4. Are hats still as popular at weddings? In recent times, the traditional hat is less popular! Taking it's place is the statement headpiece, the mini pill box/percher & fascinator. The older generation are still inclined towards the traditional hat.

5. Are there any trends that have changed over the years? Trends change frequently and I find that those in the public eye are inclined to influence the trends, e.g., Kate Middleton has certainly influenced trends in recent years.

6. How long would you say a hat can be comfortable to wear? A hat that has been commissioned for you should be comfortable for the duration of your event as it has been created to your exact measurements. A hat or headpiece chosen off the peg or hired may not be. This being the case, the length of time it is comfortable to wear is dependant on the client.

7. Do you have a studio or place where clients can come to? Clients are welcome to call into Anne Maries where all my creations are displayed and where I can meet with them. Appointments are recommended but not always necessary (however, due to the Covid 19 pandemic, all consultations will need to be prearranged for the foreseeable).


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