Artist Felicity Shillingford, who previously focused on shoes for her ‘Sole Searching’ project with Clarks, now turns her attention to hats.
‘It has been a real treat to explore the archives and see all the wonderful hats both on show and behind the scenes. There is such a rich variety of styles from this country and from other cultures around the world. I found stories and themes that appealed to me during my research and have collated them into hat creations. In addition to the collections I also visited events such as London Hat Week, Royal Ascot and the Bridgewater Hat Festival. I experienced such a wealth of fantastic makers from the industry and the general public. It was a joy to take part in these hat wearing events. I am not a milliner but have experience making hats as part of costumes for Panto Dames.’
She has woven lots of ideas into the finished hats, thinking about straw plait, magic tricks, as well as more comedic shapes that lend themselves to becoming headwear.
‘The artworks are intended to amuse and entertain, but I also want to talk about the hat industry past, present and imagined future.’
Come and see some of the hats that inspired Felicity in the exhibition Hats Made Me, until 10 December at Stockwood Discovery Centre.
Please be advised that Hat Works is closed on Saturdays and Sundays.
Hat Works will be closed from Saturday 23rd December 2023 until Monday 1st January 2024.