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Hats off

By johanna

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(83)So far this year I’ve had the pleasure of styling two bridal parties for a March and May wedding, where I have helped one bride find the right lingerie for her stunning backless wedding gown, helped another to find the perfect vintage shoes for her 1920s style dress, and helped the mother-of-the-groom find the perfect outfit, from head to toe.

Choosing an outfit for the mother of the bride or groom can often be as challenging as finding the perfect wedding dress for the bride herself. One client once told me: ‘It’s my daughter’s wedding but I don’t want to look like ‘mother of the bride’.

A daughter or son’s wedding is very important for any mother, so she will want to look equally stunning (while not upstaging the bride, obviously) chic and sophisticated.

Her outfit requires some serious thought with every detail needing careful consideration – no woman wants to turn up at a wedding in the same outfit as someone else, especially when in a starring role, and she will often need to coordinate with the rest of bridal party.

Ultimately she will want to shine in the wedding photographs alongside the bride and groom. ‘The bride may be the star, but the mother of the bride/groom is the best supporting actress’.

(85)There is no hard and fast rule for wedding looks, but you can make your outfit stand-out with stunning occasion accessories; jewellery, scarves, handbags, belts, shoes and head garments are all at our disposal.

We’re lucky enough to have a hidden gem in Cheshire in the form of TITFERS BY NEST. So this month I want to focus on the unsung hero of wedding accessories, the hat.

I love hats! I really do, you can change the spirit of an outfit with a hat, and with sumptuous materials and interesting shapes every hat has its own personality.

TITFERS BY NEST is a treasure trove of exquisite Millinery available to hire or buy from Sarah Whitfield (left), who runs the business from her home in Altrincham.

I first met Sarah at a local networking event and I was impressed by her passion, and her commitment to ensuring that each one of her beautiful hats is exactly the right one for her client and the occasion on which it is to be worn. I have since recommended her to many of my clients for events such as receiving honours at Buckingham Palace to Royal Ascot.

Having moved back up North after 15 years in London Sarah was disappointed by the offering of really exciting occasion hats. So she put her wealth of fashion buying experience and a passionate love of hats to work.

(27)Sarah has since put together a fresh and contemporary hat collection and combined it with an exemplary one-to-one service in private and comfortable surroundings. Hiring and styling is by appointment so that Sarah can offer her undivided attention to each and every client.

AS a result it’s not surprising that TITFERS has quickly established a reputation amongst the ladies of Cheshire and beyond, for sourcing, styling and fitting luxury headpieces to perfection.

With Sarah’s many years experience of dressing women, and having worked with everything from clothes, to shoes and lingerie, she understands how to build an outfit from the inside out and from top to toe. “The key to finding THE perfect hat is really about matching the hat to the personality as well as the outfit,” she told me.

Sarah continues: “If you’re unaccustomed to wearing a hat, the thought of it can be quite terrifying”. This is where TITFERS can lend a hand.

Whether your wedding is at a Town Hall, Cathedral or Synagogue, Sarah has the experience to find you something perfectly appropriate. Sarah continues: “An appointment is without obligation, and you are invited to bring friend for that all-important and trusted second opinion.”

How does it work?

(80)Once you have made an appointment (available on weekdays and some late nights), you will be invited to bring your outfit and accessories to a trying on session with Sarah in her ‘Hat Den’.

Your time, approx. 1-hour, will be spent trying on a number of pieces, shapes and sizes, carefully selected by Sarah just for you/your outfit. Sarah’s friendly and approachable nature will instantly put you at ease, and she will listen very carefully to all the details of the occasion, finding out what you would like to achieve from the outfit and any concerns you might have.

It’s a very relaxed and enjoyable process and there’s always plenty of time to try on the hats, as many times as is needed. A design that you LOVE, that makes you feel like you, and is a perfect and comfortable fit is what TITFERS strives for.

“The winning hat is always easy to identify,” says Sarah. “It’s the one that makes your face light up and grin from ear to ear the minute it goes on!”

2016-02-03 13.33.16You can be assured of honesty at all times. Sarah will be the first to tell you if a style isn’t right or if she doesn’t have the perfect hat for you, and she will offer up some alternative suggestions; whilst TITFERS doesn’t offer a bespoke service, they can put you in touch with a local Milliner that does.

When you find the perfect headpiece, and I have no doubt that you will, Sarah will show you how to fit the hat yourself, and send you away with an instructional photo, so you can remember how to put your hat on with speed and confidence on the day.

Sarah’s service really is all about the detail, which she openly admits to obsessing over (and why she’s a woman after my own heart). You can even book one of her beautiful courtesy umbrellas in a variety of styles, if the weather on the day is forecast to be unfavourable, so that even the umbrella compliments your outfit!

Alex Wedding-26With two weddings to attend myself this year I am armed with my outfit and ready for Sarah to find me the perfect headpiece [update: me doing my best ‘portrait of a lady’ impression, with the delightful ‘Pearl’].

For more information visit, email or telephone 07976 671946. Hire prices start at £30 and go up to £100+. Hire is for 5-days but you are welcome to borrow for longer for an additional charge.

And if you like what Sarah does, she also sells a curated selection of seasonal everyday hats, to keep you stylish and warm in winter, and cool in every sense through the summer.

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