Reader E. submitted the following question:
I love a lot of the hats that you show on your blog. How much do they cost?
Tough question. The short answer is: it depends. It depends on the designer, the complexity of the hat design, the cost of the materials the hat is made of and the circumstances around the purchase. Bespoke (custom designed hats) are more expensive than off-the-peg hats and I suspect that discounts are given when multiple hats are purchased. I think it’s important to remember that couture hats are very different in quality, material and design to what you might find in your local department store- just as a hand-beaded dress designed by Armani or Valentino is completely different to a machine made dress off-the-rack at Macy’s. The workmanship, materials and overall quality are very, very different and the price reflects that. I like to think about designer hats as similar to designer purses or shoes.
Here are some hats worn in the past year by the British Royal Family with current pricing:
The Duchess of Kent in “Tango” by Lock & Co Hatters, £395 on June 4, 2013
Zara Phillips in “Zaphara” Couture by Jane Taylor, £855 on March 15, 2013
Countess of Wessex in “Lauren” Couture by Jane Taylor £980 on June 15, 2013
Autumn Philips in “Primula” by Gina Foster £395 on June 20, 2013
The Countess of Wessex in “Madeleine” by Jane Taylor, £850 on March 31, 2013
The Duchess of Cambridge in “Catherine” Couture by Jane Taylor £910 on June 4, 2013
Autumn Phillips in “Fitzrovia” by Olivia Roat, £355 on March 15, 2013
Lady Frederick Windsor in “Wave Beret” by Philip Treacy, £825 on June 5, 2012
Zara Phillips in Aura by Jane Taylor, £590 on March 12, 2013
The Countess of Wessex in “Lady A” by Jane Taylor, £1,545 on October 20, 2012
Before I am bombarded with comments about how expensive these hats are, let’s remind ourselves that these are designer made items (many are handmade). It is also is important to remember that even designer hats go on sale. Jane Taylor Millinery has a sale on right now that includes two gorgeous picture hats for £90 each (see here and here). A designer hat for £90?! I’m having to seriously restrain myself from buying one.