If you want to get ahead, get a hat, goes the maxim. And if you want to get a hat in 2019, better make sure it’s by Victoria Grant. Dubbed the ‘celebrity hatter’, Victoria is the milliner who is making heads turn across the globe with her mix of heritage techniques and quirky design that could only be British.
Victoria Grant launched her millinery business in 2007.
Six years later she is one of Britain’s leading hat designers, with an exclusive client list that includes Madonna, Anna Dello Russo, Rihanna, Lady Gaga, Beyoncé and Cara Delevingne.
Her creations are regularly photographed by Mario Testino, Ellen Von Unwerth, Annie Leibovitz, Karl Lagerfeld, Nick Knight and Juergen Teller and grace the covers of fashion magazines. Her Kiss beret, adorned with goose pointers and a crystal veil, was voted ‘best hat’ at the wedding of HRH Prince Harry and Meghan Markle.
Victoria’s interest in matters millinery began at a young age with visits to the Honourable Artillery Company (HAC) with her father. Her father – who as a Pikeman with the Pikemen & Musketeers – is no stranger to eccentric headgear himself and had amassed a fine collection of military hats and ceremonial dress from his travels which Victoria found inspiring. It’s no coincidence that much of Victoria’s work today has a military aesthetic.
Fast forward to an early career as a fashion stylist, Victoria often had trouble sourcing the type of headwear that could facilitate her vision and stylistic approach. So with no formal training, she started making her own pieces for shoots. These promptly sold and she quickly became inundated with requests for bespoke designs.
‘I’ve done a lot of hats for really amazing, wild and fabulous people, from royal circles to rock royalty,’ says Victoria. ‘We are known for our whimsical style but a lot of the hats are art-based, avant garde or high fashion. We also do classic sophisticated elegance. It’s important to me that my clients are appropriately dressed for the occasion. A royal wedding is history in the making and you have to honour tradition.’ Today her exquisite hats are still hand-blocked and hand-stitched at her London atelier.
Victoria’s passion for British heritage has led her to a number of interesting collaborations, including one with British portrait artist and friend Lorna May Wadsworth. Showcased at the Philip Mould & Co gallery in 2017, the exhibition featured a large-scale portrait of Victoria by Lorna and a hat collection by Victoria, adorned with a selection of Philip Mould & Co’s portrait miniatures.
She has also collaborated with British jeweller Stephen Webster, artist Antony Micallef, Swarovski, designer Isabel Marant, Temperley Bridal and legendary French beret-maker Laulhere. ‘Laulhere has been creating berets since 1840 and I loved the idea of joining British eccentricity with French heritage,’ says Victoria.
Victoria firmly believes that hats ought to be worn, even without occasion. ‘Every woman should embrace them as they would an everyday statement accessory,’ she says.
VICTORIA GRANT NOTTING HILL ATELIER
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