Hats and headwear have risen in popularity since the Royal Wedding. A year (and a bit) later, and The Duchess of Cambridge's far-reaching fashion influence continues to inspire the world, especially in the realm of hats.
Jane Taylor, a surprisingly young (and talented) milliner, designed the hats worn by the Duchess and the Countess of Wessex to the Jubilee Thanksgiving ceremony earlier this year, as well as a number of other headpieces for other members of the royal family. Meeting with the milliner at her Fulham studio, we spoke to her about the changing perception of hats and their importance at weddings:
How do you think the Duchess of Cambridge and Ascot's new strict dress code have changed the way hats are perceived?
I think she's definitely influenced how people see them; young people are wearing more hats, definitely. She shows you how to wear hats and how to wear them well. She's so stylish and effortless, despite dressing formally, she's shown the public that you don't have to wear your mother's hat, as people did before - you can wear more modern hats that are stylish and still formal.
What is your top tip for brides-to-be searching for that final completing accessory?
When I meet with brides-to-be I ask them to bring in a little fabric swatch of the dress and a picture of it to get an idea of what it looks like and what would work with it. It really depends on the shape of the dress; if is a little 50's-inspired dress then I would say more of a cocktail hat or pillbox or something like that. If it is more traditional and classic, I'd go for something sparkly. And if it's a bespoke design they're after I would sit down and design it with them, taking inspiration from their dress and style.
What are the top trends for bridal headpieces at the moment?
I suppose there are three main directions brides are going now: the beaded route, more modern pieces and birdcage veils. Delicate, pretty beading is very popular at the moment; it complements vintage-inspired dresses very well and is so beautiful. There are more modern feathery pieces too that are still quite classic, and then birdcage veils which seems to be a new favourite.
Jane Taylor; Bespoke bridal service from £350; www.janetaylor.com