BreedersCup Hat Tips!

2016 Kentucky Derby Hats and Fashion Trends

Fashion Trends and 2016 Kentucky Derby Hats, continued!

Why do women like to be Southern Belles?  I think it is the time to be feminine, have fun and turn those male heads!  Enter the Kentucky Derby!  As a girl born in Kentucky, I can totally understand the Southern Belle mentality.  While living in New York City for over 13 years, I was endlessly pursued by men wanting to hear my Southern accent.  I have lived in Kentucky for 18 years and am only now getting my Southern accent back. 

For the 2016 Kentucky Derby, we pulled together the latest fashion trends, suggestions and combinations, and combined them with beautiful Derby hats

Picking out a classic dress is the first step on your Kentucky Derby fashion journey, and choosing your Derby hat is a close second.

 

 

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Simply Demure
Simply Demure

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I think Simply Demure would be perfect with this dress.  The flow of this dress lends itself to a relaxed, feminine hat.  Wearing a longer dress to the Derby is definitely different.  I would personally do something like this.  Derby is a very long day. At the end of the day, I could hardly walk.  I am drooling over these sandals as I remember women taking off their high heels to walk out of Churchill.

 

 

 

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Molly
Molly

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I love the idea of a black and white dress.  It is classic and gives a hat designer so much to work with!  The black and white hat with a vivid pop of hot pink is classic Polly Singer!  So much so, that I designed my hat boxes in the same colors.  Better hide the credit card because I would purchase this dress in a heartbeat.

 

 

 

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Kathrina
Kathrina

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For an elegant vision, I would pair Kathrina with this dress.  Perfect for the Kentucky Oaks, it is simple and elegant.  Classic Chanel and smooth.  I love fashion simplicity because it allows the client to really look amazing.  Hats that are over the top take away from the client’s own beauty in my opinion.  You will notice that celebrities always tone their outfits, not over do.

 

 

 

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Mischa
Mischa

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This one of my classic hats.  Mischa would look amazing with this dress.  The structure and angles of the hat complement the geometric design of the dress.   As a young designer, I was often baffled working with patterns like those on this dress.  A simple, classic hat design is the best remedy.

I hope these ideas have helped, and given you some idea of how to match a hat with this year’s fashion trends, especially as we near one of my favorite events, and I will bet you can guess what that is.  Any questions, please contact me and we will help you pick out your special hat, or create a gorgeous custom hat exclusively for you.

But hurry! The Derby is just around the corner! 

Contact us now to design a beautiful Kentucky Derby Hat for you. 

 

 

 

Winter Straws

“Buy straw hats in winter. ”


(idiomatic) of stocks
attributed to financier Russell Sage (1816-1906)

Straw Hats in the winter? Well that depends on where they’re worn and, most important, in what colors. As we’ve become convinced of the ill effects of sun exposure, women look for sun protection year round. Sun block is a necessity, plus, there exists a need for attractive wide brimmed hats in autumn/ winter hues. Last year, Polly dedicated a segment of her collection to what we call “transitional straws”, that is, hats made of parisisal straw designed in colors and materials which complement cool weather fashion. The transitional straws have been popular with horse racing fans. Here are a few of the front runners.

Elmhurst

Elmhurst blazes with the vibrant colors of an Autumn Day.

Epigram adds rich mocha tones to basic black. An excellent accessory for a camel hair coat or with earth toned tweeds.

Indulgence

Indulgence, in crisp black and white with an unexpected twist in peacock blue is divine with a houndstooth check or to relieve black or gray ensembles.

Any of the transitional straw designs will add spark to your fall and winter wardrobe, all the while, affording extra sun protection.

by Jan Masters Yon

Note: We enjoy contact with readers and invite your comments. My email address is jan@hatsandveils.net. Polly may be reached at polly@hatsandveils.net. We both look forward to hearing from you.

Derby Tip of the Week

Turnout matters.

To me, a visit to the paddock is worth fighting the crowds, for, in addition to supporting to my persistent (though erroneous) belief that I’m a good judge of horseflesh, I derive pleasure from admiring the grooms’ art. Beautifully conditioned, impeccably turned out thoroughbreds simply radiate breeding and care.

I’m conviced that, with a regime of customized nutrition, daily exercise and the tender ministrations of professional grooms, I too would dazzle . Well, it’s too late to do much about the nutrition and exercise but here are are few grooming tips that will help you sparkle on Derby Day.

Use moisturizer and/or foundation with sunblock. A bright red nose might be attributed to Mint Juleps. ( Juleps bear responsibility for enough shenanigans as it is.) Remember, any sunblock you carry into Churchill Downs must be in a plastic container.

Before Derby Day, apply the cosmetics you plan to use, put on your hat, and step outside with a mirror. Hat color will definitely effect the tone of your complexion. Large areas of color near the face reflect onto and tint the face. Color interaction is also a factor. Do you remember the color wheels we made in middle school art class? When predicting how one hue will affect another, think complements. The complement to purple is yellow, thus a lavender hat will make your face look more sallow. A green hat will bring out warm tones in the skin. Sunlight filtering through the brim of a hat is another factor in how we preceive color. Rose tones is a perfect example. Pink hats do wonderful, age defying things to a woman’s complexion. I still don’t know which color dress I’ll wear to Derby, but I can tell you this, my hat will be pink. Check out your make up with the hat, you may find that some adjustments, a warmer or cooler foundation, more or less blush, may be in order.

As mentioned above, step out in the sunlight with your mirror. Yes, I know this can be painful for a woman of a certain age, I recommended it all the same. We’re all hoping Derby Day will be sunny and clear. However the kind of day that brings us a fast track also has unforgiving lighting. Strong natural light calls for the sheerest foundation possible. If you need more coverage, make sure the finish is well blended, flawless. I’m younger than Dracula yet still at an age where I’d rather avoid mirrors and sunlight altogether, however, I do want to see the make-up, flaws and all, before anyone else does. Be brave, move toward the light.

By the same token, work with your hair and your hat before the morning of the Derby. Experiment with pinning bangs out of the way, straightening or curling the hair that shows beneath your hat. This is a good place to mention that, while the label sewn inside your hat band indicates what the milliner considers to be the back of the hat, don’t be a slave to labels, experiment, often the hat will look better rotated. Anyway, what do milliners know? By the time Derby rolls around,they’re all mad as hatters anyway.

In the realms of thoroughbred racing and ballet, two of my favorite worlds, turnout matters.

by Jan Masters Yon

Breeders’ Cup Heads Up

Breed the best to the best and hope for the best.
the Breeder’s axiom

In a perfect world every day would be Ladies’ Day. In the world of thoroughbred racing Ladies’ Day is October 24, opening day of the 25th running of the Breeders Cup Championships. The Breeders’ Cup Ladies Day Classic (formerly known as Breeders Cup Distaff) will be the premier race on the Friday program featuring five races for the distaff divisions (fillys only) with the feature race being the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Ladies’ Classic worth $2 million.

The Breeders’ cup was created in 1982 by Kentucky horseman John R. Gaines as a year-end championship for North American thoroughbred racing. It also draws outstanding horses world wide. Day 2 of the event is considered to be the the second richest day in sports, the Dubai World Cup night being the first.

This year, to the organizers’ credit, the day will be profitable not only to the breeders owners and competent and/or lucky handicappers; two global charity events will benefit as well. The Breeders’ Cup association has established relationships with St. Judes and Komen for the Cure and has set a goal of raising $250, 000 for each organization during the 2008 season. St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is internationally recognized for its pioneering work in finding cures and saving children with cancer and other catastrophic diseases and freely shares its discoveries with scientific and medical communities around the world. No family ever pays for treatments not covered by insurance and families without insurance are never asked to pay. Komen for the Cure is the world’s largest grassroots network of breast cancer survivors and activists to save lives, empower people, ensure quality care for all and energize science to find the cures.

The program will be held at Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, California. The average temperature in this area is 81, with an average rainfall of 0.57 inches. If you’re planning to attend you may expect to experience hot weather and little likelihood of rain — perfect hat weather. So what style of hat complements the fashions of the season yet provides comfort and sun protection in a warm climate?

Polly Singer Couture Hats and Veils is a step, or in racing parlance, a stride ahead with a newly designed line of what we call “Transitional Straws”. Playfully named in this blog only for Breeder’s Cup winners, these hats are fashioned of parisisal straw in our best loved shapes (The Madhatter, Simply Elegant, Blythe Spirit) in warmer autumn hues and finished with trims, feathers, flowers and fabric which are in keeping with the season. Below is a gallery of the newest designs. Sorry, these particular hats aren’t yet available for purchase online but I invite you to peruse the gallery. If there’s a design that suits one of your fall ensembles, please call, we are happy to discuss designs and are taking orders for them by phone. On an interesting note, Polly designed a hat last year that proved lucky for owner Theresa Mobley of West Point Thoroughbreds, whose horse, Awsome Gem finished third in The Breeders Cup Classic .

If you can’t make it to The Breeders’ Cup this year, you may follow the races on television. For the third straight year ESPN will televise live coverage of both days of the Breeders’ Cup World Championships. The following link will take you to the schedule.

http://horseracing.about.com/od/tvschedules/a/bltvsched.htm

Opening day, Friday, October 24 will feature five races for females only which, according to Breeder’s Club president, Greg Avioli, is a show case for the talents of the best female thoroughbreds in the world. If you aren’t fortunate to be at Santa Anita that weekend, I urge you throw a Ladies’ Day Party; to assemble your best lady-friends, favorite refreshments, The Daily Racing Form and show support for Filly Power. You might offer prizes for The Alpha Mare, Best Handicapper, Most Spirited Display of Lady-Like Support and, naturally, a special award for Best Fall Hat. It’s our day, ladies, lets revel in it!

by Jan Masters Yon

A Gathering of Well Wishers

Polly with hostesses, Caroline and Jane
Polly with hostesses, Caroline and Jane

…laughter tinkled among the teacups.
Mr. Appolinax, T.S. Eliot

A cool September morning in a lovely rural locale was the setting for a tea in honor of Polly Singer. Longtime friends Caroline and Jane gathered a group of Polly’s intimates for a brunch to congratulate Polly on the recent inclusion of hats from her collection in two national magazines, Tea Time and Victoria

The delights of the table (as always, let’s talk about the food first) began with a champagne toast, proceeded to a brunch which consisted of two kinds of Jane’s quiche and Caroline’s Waldorf Salad and scones with creme fraiche and homemade jam. The occasion finished sweetly with tarts, tea and laughter.

The beautifully appointed Autumn table was further adorned by charming guests. The ladies present represented various vocations and avocations; among them, a woodworker, a vintage inspired dress designer , a couple of graphics artist and a bee keeper or two. Needless to say, the conversation was both varied and lively.

Invitations and place cards made by Jane and Caroline bore images of hats. Interestingly enough, though there was no mention of hats as a dress code requirement, most every guest wore one; and, as would be expected, several of the hats were Singer designs. Polly herself wore Blythe Spirit, a wide brimmed black hat banked with yellow silk flowers. One of the hostesses wore Audrey at Ascot. Though officially fall, it’s still quite warm in Kentucky; transitional hats, natural straw trimmed in darker colors, black, bottle green or plum for instance, were the overwhelming choice.

Hats featured in this month’s Victoria Magazine are from the Singer fall and winter collection. The hat created for Tea Time is a new design, Fall Romance. To see the layouts and learn more about Polly’s contribution, scroll down to Hat Chats entitled Hats Off to Victoria and A Hat for Tea Time. Both magazines are currently available on the stands.

We wish to thank Caroline and Jane for the kind tribute and delightful morning.

by Jan Masters Yon

Talking Through Your Hat

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“Flowers have a language of their own, and it is this bright particular language that we would teach our readers. How charmingly a young gentleman can speak to a young lady, and with what eloquent silence in this delightful language. How delicately she can respond, the beautiful little flowers telling her tale in perfumed words; what a delicate story the myrtle or the rose tells! How unhappy that which basil, or yellow rose reveals, while ivy is the most faithful of all.”

Collier’s Cyclopedia of Commercial and Social Information and Treasury of Useful and Entertaining Knowledge, compiled by Nugent Robinson. P.F. Collier, 1882

Chronologically speaking, Lexington is about half way between April showers and May flowers. While I have the poet’s “host of golden daffodils” as well as forsythia, the japonica is fabulous as usual; where I see the widest array flowers is on the hats that are flying out of Polly’s studio. It’s clear the winner of the Kentucky Derby will not be the only one at Churchill draped in roses. You might say there’s been a sort of Run on The Roses this year.

As you know, the red rose is the flower associated with Derby, but did you know, according to the Victorians, a red rose, in fact all flowers, have something to say? For instance, the magnolia proclaims nobility, the camellia, speaks of unpretending excellence. The hydrangea, a flower Polly often uses to ornament hats can mean either heartlessness or “thank you for understanding”.

While the cabbage rose is the Ambassador of Love, a yellow rose signals jealousy, a pale pink rose expresses joy of life, the red rose we associate with the Derby simply means “love”. For a complete list of the language of flowers, visit this site:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Floriography. Learn a few phrases of conversational flora then, as you watch the Derby you can admire the fabulous garden of hats, and read them as well.

As for me, I haven’t yet decided which hat I’ll be wearing Derby Day but I can tell you this, tucked in the veiling or secreted away in the band will be a spring of Bells of Ireland, for Bells of Ireland whisper “luck”.

by Jan Masters Yon