Spring Carnival hattery

RACE DAY: Laura Jones models a Jodie Louise Thompson hat she wore when she reached the top 10 in fashions on the field at the Newcastle Gold Cup 2016.

RACE DAY: Laura Jones models a Jodie Louise Thompson hat she wore when she reached the top 10 in fashions on the field at the Newcastle Gold Cup 2016.

THE Melbourne Cup is all about a good hat, according to Newcastle milliner Jodie Louise Thompson. 

Tucked away in Hunter Street Mall’s Emporium Ms Thompson has been busy cutting, stitching and crafting an array of artful creations with the Spring Carnival in mind. 

The best way to choose the right hat or headpiece for  the Melbourne Cup is to bring in your entire outfit, dress, shoes and clutch, Ms Thompson said.

Bright, colourful and a little bit crazy with a beautiful design and eye-catching and different ... a lot of ladies spend almost a year planning. - Jodie Louise Thompson

“I do the complete styling and help them complete their look,” she said. 

Ms Thompson said the elements of the perfect Melbourne Cup hat or headpiece are: “Bright, colourful and a little bit crazy with a beautiful design and eye-catching and different.”

“They want something unique that wont be seen on anyone else’s head,” she said.

“A lot of my clients have made it to the top 10 in fashions on the field in Newcastle and Derby Day in Melbourne last year.

“A lot of ladies spend almost a year planning.”

She said helping women put together their Cup outfits was a lot of fun.

“It makes me happy to see their excitement when I bring their vision to life and I hand-make it for them and it’s exactly what they wanted. They leave my shop ecstatic,” she said.

Ms Thompson said she currently had more than 60 hats and headpieces especially for the carnival season, as well as gloves. 

“I have vintage, french tapestry fabric I have created into a swirl design, it suits most people, it’s a very elegant design. It has quills that are curved to complement the fabric. It has been very popular – but there is only one.

“Everything I have made is a one-off, unique.”

Ms Thompson said she has created a range of hats and headpieces from the small and subtle to the over-the-top. Some clients will spend more than $600 on the perfect Melbourne Cup hat. 

The Spring Carnival kicked off last week with the Caulfield Cup. Next Saturday they will be off and racing at the Cox Plate. Derby Day, for which only black and white should be worn, is on October 29. The highlight is always the Melbourne Cup, to be held on November 1. 

Follow Jodie Lousie Thompson Millinery on Facebook: facebook.com/jodie.louisethompson

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