Appointment with Ailish

Make an Appointment with Ailish

I always enjoy meeting my clients in my studio in East Clare where a warm and friendly welcome awaits. This first appointment is a crucial part of the design process. It gives me the opportunity to study in detail the outfit my client has chosen and I love hearing about their plans for their special occasion. 

When we get together and start chatting about their wedding outfit I usually find that they are not sure what type of headpiece would suit them. Most of us aren’t used to wearing hats on a regular basis, so don’t instantly know what will work for us. Don’t worry, I am here to help and I will ensure that you look elegant and beautiful! 

Your headpiece provides the link between your dress and you and it needs to enhance and compliment you as well as your dress. Remember, you’re wearing the hat and not the other way around and my aim to is help you choose a design that ultimately you’ll feel comfortable in and can wear all day. 

I have been styling clients for many years and I’ve lost count of the number of weddings and celebrations I have created hats for. I’m lucky to have so many word of mouth recommendations too that often I see members of the same family coming to me for advice and my designs. I have had mothers, daughters, sisters, aunts, grandmothers and cousins all from the same family visit it me for appointments. Sometimes all at once which can turn my studio into an absolute hive of creativity and activity!

Each headpiece I have designed tells a story and I love to see the photos from all of my clients who have worn my headpieces and made them theirs. It is so rewarding to have played a small part in their memories of a special time in their lives. Please check out my client testimonials.

But what is my secret? How do I help a client choose the right wedding headpiece? How do I design something that she’ll love to wear, will make her feel fabulous and look out of this world in her photos?


Bring your Outfit
I have seen a vast array of beautiful outfits coming though the doors of my studio over the years and I love the challenge of creating a beautiful bespoke headpiece to compliment the outfit and my client. I will always carefully study each outfit so that details on the dress can be reflected in the materials used to create the headpiece; so if a client has a diamanté detail on her outfit for example then she may need a headpiece that includes those glittering elements too.

For this reason, it is essential to bring your outfit with you to your first appointment so I can study it in detail. I will be able to create a bespoke design or help you choose a hat hire that is the right colour, size and proportion for you and your outfit. 

An outfit with a lot of pattern may work best with a simple headpiece that echoes the fabric used. For instance, a floral dress with a lot of colour details can look stunning with a simple headpiece which picks out one color from the dress that also ties in with the accessories such as the shoes and handbag. 

Structured tailored suits and jumpsuits with clean lines in plain fabrics can look beautiful with statement headpieces in a more elaborate design or a large brim hat.

Tips for Alterations
If you are having alterations done to your outfit or are having your outfit made, please keep any excess fabric and bring it along to your appointment with me. I have often created some stunning headpieces out of the left over fabric from the outfit for a truly bespoke design that can beautifully complete a clients overall look.

When you are at my studio for your appointment experiment and try on lots of different styles! Most of us aren’t used to wearing hats on a regular basis, so we don’t instantly know what will work for us. I have a wide variety of headpieces in my studio which I encourage my client to try on. This can be great fun and can provide a few giggles too, but most importantly, it is part of a learning process that helps me to advise my clients on which style of headpiece would work well for her. We are all unique and my clients can often discover a style that suits them that they never before considered and are often surprised to learn what suits them best.

Consider the Type of Occasion
I have handcrafted headpieces to suit every style. From rustic barn weddings to beach destination ceremonies; country house elegance to chic hotel events… I have designed for every type of celebration.

The colours of the seasons can play a pivotal role in the choice of colours and materials of a headpiece. For example; Christmas weddings are perfect for glittering headpieces, luxurious felts and velvets. A Summer weddings are perfect for lighter materials, pastels and brighter shades.

My tip would be to wear your hair exactly how you want it to look for the entire day whether the headpiece is on and off! My headpieces are versatile and can work around lots of different styles.

A good hairstylist will always be able to assist in the placement of a headpiece and I always ensure that my headpieces are easy to fix and will stay in place all day long or for as long as you wish.

Height and Face and Body Shape
It’s really important that the headpiece you choose looks in proportion to your features. A large hat can be dramatic and super-flattering, but on petite faces or frames it may be overwhelming. When choosing your hat, consider your entire silhouette and make sure your hat is the appropriate size to compliment and balance your look. The secret is elegance in the right proportions. 

Understanding a client’s face shape is key. I will always demonstrate the correct placement of the headpieces on my client and I will work to advise my clients on how and where to place the headpiece at the correct angle to flatter and frame their face shape. Once you have found your perfect hat experiment with its position. Not all hats belong in the centre of our heads, some look best further forward or angled above the eyebrow. For a stylish look, I recommend placing hats at an angle to match the angle of your jaw line.

Colour Matching
Colour matching is an essential part of the millinery service I offer my clients for a bespoke design commission.

However, sometimes a bold colour can work well as a contrast to neutrals, especially when you pick out the hat colour in shoes or bag for a co-ordinated look. A plain hat usually works best with a patterned outfit unless the hat has been perfectly matched. 

In my experience, if the dress is all one block colour, a hat in a contrasting colour with a touch of the colour of the outfit can work better. All of these possibilities will be discussed and considered at your appointment with me. 

If you would like to make an Appointment with Ailish to discuss a Bespoke Hat Design or to browse my Hats for Hire range. Please contact me by email or fill in the form below. I look forward to meeting you at my studio.

Book an Appointment with Ailish

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