As an avid ‘Top Model’ fan and a lover of all things millinery, I was pleased to be invited to a showcase of Louis Mariette’s work. The talented milliner is also the latest judge to join the Britain’s Next Top Model panel. A celebration of Louis Mariette’s dramatic, inspirational head-pieces, the party was held in the plush surroundings of his Sloane Gardens showroom and home.
There was a room dedicated entirely to crystal-encrusted pieces: a true haven for a fashion magpies like myself. In the larger part of the studio, hats ‘wowed’ with large-scale, grand pieces that hung next to the most feminine and delicate of fascinators. The effect was excessive and impressive: just the antidote to the minimalism promoted in this difficult recession. Each piece held its own and, as guests munched on delicious mini Hummingbird cupcakes and sushi snippets, muffled expressions of admiration were undeniable.
Louis himself seems like a fabulous character; it’s always so refreshing when you can clearly see the designer’s personal aesthetic directly reflected in their work. Vogue and ID are both Mariette fans and celebrities such as Sophie Dahl and Alek Wek also champion his unapologetically flamboyant style. These are hats that make you want to run to Ascot, if only to behave raucously in a Swarovski-encrusted bonnet.