Beauty and the Business

Please excuse the title of this update, but it seems rather apt as over the last few months my millinery adventures have enabled me to work with some amazing local beauty and styling businesses.

It all began when I was invited to take part in a garden based wedding photoshoot to create two different bridal looks: ‘Boho’ and ‘Glamour’.

The weather was spectacular and it was great to work with so many local suppliers. Here are a few of the beautiful images taken by Charleigh Victoria Photography and our ‘dream team’ Hair: Sam Orwell Bridal Hair, Make Up: Kiri MUA, Cakes: Jen at Crafted Cakes and Bakes, Paper Flowers: Clare at Petal and Bird, Prop Hire- Hollie at Love from Hollie, Dresses- Bijou Bridal Boutique and hats and headpiece by me! If you would like to read more about the bridal photoshoot check out the blog post on Girl Gets Wed.

Yesterday I found myself co-hosting a Summer styling event with the very glamorous Vicky Booker, a personal stylist and coach, it was great fun to share my ‘top tips’ for hat wearing, answer lots of ‘hatty’ questions and help everyone try on their favourite hats and headpieces.

I’m also in the process of updating the ‘Frequently asked Questions’ section of my website. If you get the chance, please check out what’s already there and let me know what other questions you would like answered.

A little further afield, the talented Make Up Artist, Lauren Anderson, has also featured my handcrafted hats in her first ever hard copy magazine / look book. There is still something very special about seeing your business ‘in print’, it really made my week.

Online, Eclipse, a magazine which highlights the social side of racing – has recently featured our red, white and blue percher hat in their ‘Best of British’ gift collection.

Eclipse magazine are currently giving away one of my handcrafted headpieces in a free prize draw as part of their summer bonanza. The hat in the prize draw is this beautiful black and purple handcrafted headpiece which would look stunning at any wedding or race event. For details on how to enter the draw click here.

It has been a busy few months and there have been lots of fabulous people to meet with hats being created for clients in the UK and in France and America for weddings, Ascot and ceremonies at Buckingham Palace. When things get a little busy, I do end up neglecting my website – over the next few weeks I’ll try my best to to make sure you see lots more photos of my creations in action!

Until next time, happy hat wearing!


London Hat Week

I hope you are all having a fabulous and very sunny Easter weekend. It’s such a beautiful time in the garden seeing the flowers spring into life.

A couple of weeks ago I was lucky enough to see some amazing handcrafted flowers at The London Hat Week’s X Terrance ‘ World Garden’ theme hat exhibition. Here are a few of my favourite hats and headpieces – I just love how millinery combines such a wide range of crafts. As you can see from these images, felt work, silk flower making, feather work, embroidery and hand sewing skills have all been used to create these masterpieces.

As part of London Hat week, Sarah at the John Boyd Atelier in Knightsbridge held an exhibition of some of John Boyd’s work within her working millinery studio. John Boyd was one of London’s best loved milliners, making hats for Princess Anne and Diana Princess of Wales.

As well as visiting the exhibitions, London Hat week is all about milliners from around the world getting together to learn from each other and having the perfect excuse to wear a hat. At the weekend there is a suppliers fair where you can stock up on hat making materials and dream about the next hat block you want to buy! I’m currently developing a bridal collection based on some of the amazing techniques and fabrics that inspired me during London Hat Week – pop over to my insta or Facebook page to capture snapshots of their development!

Hand Dyeing Silk Abaca for a Bespoke Millinery Headpiece

This week I’ve been experimenting with colour to bring some sunshine into my West Sussex millinery studio. It’s the first time I’ve hand dyed silk abaca and I must say I’m delighted with the results. Would you like to see?

This photo shows the ivory silk abaca as it is placed into its bath of Jacquard acid dye – to make this colour I mainly used ‘yellow sun’ with a little pinch of ‘cherry red’. I just love how the colour slowly creeps up the fabric as it is submerged.

Silk abaca dyeing with Jacquard acid dyes

Whilst the fabric was in it’s bath, I couldn’t help myself – I had to pop in a variety of feathers too!

Once the fabric had dried it turned into this beautiful daffodil yellow.

Perfect for making some gorgeous silk abaca flowers for one of my bespoke hats.

With a little bit of shaping and millinery magic it wasn’t long before the petals could be seen in all their glory – can you see that gorgeous yellow as the underside of these flowers?

Silk Abaca Flower for Bespoke Headpiece – Isabella Josie Millinery

And as for the finished handcrafted  headpiece, would you like a sneaky peak?  It will form part of my Spring  / Summer 2019 collection, such an elegant design for the racing season. It’s a hat that looks stunning from every angle, it’s  sure to be one of this years favourites.

Fascinator Making Workshops in West Sussex

As you may know, some of my hats and headpiece are available to buy through
Bosham Walk Art and Craft Centre in Bosham, a picturesque costal village in West Sussex. If you are in the local area, both Bosham and Bosham Walk, with its amazing treasure trove of beautiful art and craftwork, are lovely places to visit. Bosham even has an ancient church that was mentioned in infamous Bayeaux tapestry.

I’m delighted to announce that I’m going to be offering Fascinator Making workshops at Bosham Walk. The Fascinator Making workshops are great fun and are ideal for hen parties, birthday celebrations and ‘get-togethers’ with friends. If you would like to book one, just let me know – sessions are available at the weekend and in the evenings. Fascinator Making Workshop West Sussex


Millinery Flower Headpiece with Worbla Black Art

Worbla Black Art Thermoplastic Millinery FlowerWould you like to see my latest thermoplastic experiment with Worbla’s Black Art?

Worbla Black Art, like Worbla mesh art and finest art becomes flexible at around 90 degrees Celsius, but has a much smoother finish. I’d previously seen a great article by a cosplayer on the Worbla website on how to make leaves using a silicon cake flower mould. I totally loved this idea (especially as I’m not great artist) and started to play. Continue reading