The new fashion craze for hatbands could spell the end of the millinery trade.
While some of the younger royals have taken to wearing large embellished padded headbands, we would avoid them entirely. Headbands are just like the Alice bands we wore at school – and had stopped wearing by the time we were 10!
Firstly, we don’t think they are as elegant as the traditional hat, fascinator or hatinator. They look like a quick fix. If you’re the mother of the bride or groom, or even a guest at a special occasion, we believe that you should make an effort to look the part. You will probably be on photographs to be immortalised for many years to come, so it’s important to look as if you are part of the celebrations.
Secondly, they really don’t suit everyone. By the very nature of a headband, you pull your hair behind your ears, which is not a flattering look for everyone. It can highlight the very features which you want to minimise – particularly on a more mature face – creating a much harsher look and drawing attention to the jawline.
Thirdly – don’t think you are saving money by buying such a small piece! Looking at the cost of one worn by the Duchess of Cambridge, the reported price of the headband was an eye-watering £340, while we found another online at nearly $2000! We do accept, however, that the duchess is a very beautiful young woman and has perfect features, and the cream one she wore for Louis’s christening was very pretty, but recent photos of her wearing a hatband made her outfits look distinctly ordinary.
And speaking about hatbands from a purely personal perspective, it will have a devastating effect on the millinery industry. There are thousands of professional milliners in this country and abroad who are creating beautiful headwear to enhance the outfit of the wearer. They have trained and toiled to hone their craft and use their skills to create something amazing.
While there are many pretty hatbands currently around, the workmanship involved is minimal compared to the work in creating of a beautiful hat or a statement fascinator. Putting a few sequins and pearls on a band takes less effort than steaming and shaping your hat or fascinator and then embellishing with silks, feathers, beads and veiling.
We have already lost the tradition of wearing hats as an everyday accessory – back in the day a beautiful bonnet was the height of fashion, but also had a practical use for women to keep their hair clean and in place, not to mention to co-ordinate with their outfit. Remember Scarlett O’Hara in Gone with the Wind who had her bonnets shipped from Paris – but then she pulled down those amazing green velvet curtains for her dressmaker to make her outfit and hat?
No – Simply Devine will not be making or selling special occasion hatbands any time soon – our mission is to make every one of our customers look stunning, and unless you’re under ten years old, that means no headbands!