Ten top tips for your Derby Festival hat – from the Royal Milliner

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Horseracing is the ultimate spectacle to showcase some serious millinery and what better opportunity to make a statement with your Derby Festival hat than at the two-day Investec Derby Festival held at Epsom Downs Racecourse?

Rachel Trevor Morgan has been designing hats for Her Majesty The Queen since 2006 and is widely respected for her attention to detail, creating glamorous and feminine hats and headpieces.

Rachel learnt her trade with two of the top milliners in London, Graham Smith and Phillip Somerville, and her thriving business has been operating from her 17th century atelier in London St James since 1990. Rachel’s beautiful Derby Festival hats are stocked at Harrods and her bespoke clients are seen at her studio. Rachel’s hats are worn by a faithful following of British royals, celebrities and clients seeking a hat to flatter and finish an outfit.

As the first iconic event of the Summer attended by a crowd in excess of 135,000, the Investec Derby Festival is the ultimate platform to showcase millinery.

Rachel Trevor Morgan commented: “I have been making hats and headpieces for this unique event for a number of years and most recently more statement pieces for Ladies’ Day which has grown significantly. Hats make a very strong statement and are the final touch to anyone’s attire.

“For top social occasions, hats are an investment that needs to be made and the hat you wear says a lot about you. There are different styles of hats for different outfits, such as a formal suit or a dress. Personality, social status and the type of occasion should all have an impact on the style of hat chosen,” she says.

Headwear is a fail-safe way to stand out in a crowd, make a statement and enhance any outfit and Rachel Trevor Morgan has supplied her Top 10 Millinery Tips to help you make the right choice for your Derby Festival Hat:

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  1. Visit a professional milliner and seek advice for the best style that suits your look, personality and social status.
  2. Hats are all about balance, use a full length mirror to try on different styles, you need to take account of the whole look, if possible actually put the outfit on.
  3. Try on many different styles including ones that you don’t think are for you – you may be surprised at the results.
  4. Take a friend shopping with you, in the absence of a shop assistant to help, you will need advice.
  5. Take account of your face shape:
    – A rounder face requires a deeper/ squarer crown to give height.
    – If you have a small face, too big a hat will swamp you.
    – A long thin face requires a bigger brim.
  6. There is no fixed rule regarding hair but up is best to show off the line of the hat.
  7. Ensure it complements your outfit and other fashion accessories. However, hats don’t need to match the colour of the outfit. A contrasting colour for the hat can look spectacular and can often make the hat become a statement on its own rather than an extension of the outfit.
  8. Make sure you are wearing the hat correctly – for example do not put a hat on the back of your head unless it has been designed to be worn like that.
  9. Treat your hat as an investment piece – something that will go with a range of outfits.
  10. Wear your hat with confidence – hats should be a great confidence booster, wear the right one and you will be receiving compliments all day and feel fabulous!

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Pictured top: Three hats designed by Rachel Trevor Morgan, available from http://www.jacques-vert.co.uk/rachel-trevor-morgan/

If you’re wondering what to wear with your hat, read our Derby Festival Fashion Guide.


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