This time of the year is the highest season for milliners and hat-lovers in the US. For the next few weeks there will be photo galleries of the best dressed and best hatted ladies for the Kentucky Derby. For once, the hats are in the spotlight.
Oddly, all of these beautiful galleries will tell us who the lucky lady is underneath the splendiferous hat and what sort of dress she’s wearing— like the dress is the focal point. PAH! It’s all about the hat. And it should be all about who spent hours and hours creating it.
The race is next Saturday. I was one of those girls who was entirely enthralled with horses at a young age. I took riding lessons and read all the horse books I could get my hands on. I fantasized about racing on the Black Stallion. Misty of Chincoteague. National Velvet. Couldn’t get enough of them. (except My Friend Flicka. Couldn’t stand that one.) Lately I’ve been missing horses, and thinking of English riding lessons .
In any case, I humbly offer my own gallery of derby beauties. They come from my beloved Etsy and from the center of racing fashion in the US, aptly titled Fashion at the Races. This latter site has a very well curated collection of the finer hats, made in America. I was assisted in curating this list by two of my Milliners of Etsy Team Leaders, the marvelous Amanda Joyner and Belle McCluskey.
In any case, bring on the hats!
Emily Moe is a milliner who, since 2007, has slowly been taking over the world of Millinery and captains the Milliners of Etsy, a collective of artistan hat-makers from around the world. She lives with her husband in Minnesota and gets up to all kinds of creative mischief.