Ascot hats and Cecil Beaton

Are you ready for Ascot? Are your fingers firmly crossed for sunshine and warm weather with no hat snatching breezes.  Have you got your beautiful, very special hat?

If not, do have a look in the window of Beaudesert in Tisbury!  An interior design and bespoke four-poster bed salon might not be the obvious placeBeaton Fabrics Window to find a hat….but you will.



Andrew Ginger, owner, director and creative genius of Beaudesert and I have been following each other on Twitter for some years; sharing an enthusiasm for stunning fabrics, quirky design and…..French IMG_3859Patisserie!  Perhaps there is a link:  hats and interior design require precision, structure, colour, texture, elegance, style.  Imagine standing in front of the shop windows of a hat shop and a patisserie.  What you would see in both would be tempting objects of desire! Enter…and be drawn into the enticing world of stunning ‘confections’!

The signature fabric of Beaudesert is ‘Beaton Bouquet’ and Andrew asked me to make a display dummy head in that fabric with a hat to accompany 109it for his Ascot window.






‘Anenome’ is that hat!  The challenge was to create an Ascot hat that referenced the colours and pattern of the fabric…and the Cecil Beaton 105ethos… without making a pastiche of his ‘My Fair Lady’ costume designs.

At first, I found myself choosing feathers and silk and chiffon ribbons and nearly created just what I was trying to avoid! I don’t think many women are planning to go to Ascot dressed as an extra from ‘Downton Abbey’ however gorgeous the costumes.

So, I looked again at the floral pattern.  The hat was made in matching 074pink and black with a large brim for impact and balance.  The trim needed to be eye catching, quite flamboyant, feminine and modern…. clean lines and minimum fuss and frou frou.



The fabric, ‘Beaton Bouquet’, shows stylised roses, quite spiky and angular.  I used arrowhead quills and curved, hand rolled leaves to create the idea of the twisting sprays and, to davoid the obvious floppy silk flower,  a rosette of black lace ribbon



Look cool and elegant in black or vibrant in passionate pink, with this hat to complete your outfit, you will stand  tall and smile for the camera!  Ready for your close-up, Madam?

Beaudesert Showroom, The Square,Tisbury, Wiltshire,SP3 6IP