6 ISSUES FOR £6 Subscribe to Surrey Life today click here

Top hat tips for Ladies’ Day from Farnham’s Beverley Edmondson Millinery

PUBLISHED: 13:32 02 June 2017 | UPDATED: 13:33 02 June 2017

Beverley Edmondson with one of her creations (Photo: Alistair Wilson)

Beverley Edmondson with one of her creations (Photo: Alistair Wilson)


With wedding and race season upon us, Farnham milliner Beverley Edmondson shows Rebecca Younger how to complete an outfit with the perfect hat

Surrey Life editor Rebecca Younger in her finished hat (Photo: Alistair Wilson)Surrey Life editor Rebecca Younger in her finished hat (Photo: Alistair Wilson)

Originally published in Surrey Life magazine May 2017


Make sure to share pics of your Ladies’ Day headwear with us on social media! #SurreyLife


As summer approaches, the somewhat bare social calendar of late winter/early spring will begin to fill up again; racing season is just around the corner and wedding invitations will have no doubt already landed on the door mat. While hats have been a prominent feature in both these events for years, the humble fascinator took over for a while, providing the less committed lady a more reserved – and somewhat simpler – choice. But nowadays, the style stakes have upped their game. Hats are back.

I love hats but I very rarely wear them. I did on one occasion, buy a rather wide-brimmed off-the-peg number to fit in with a racecourse dress code but have never felt truly confident when wearing it and it has been banished to a life adorning the bed post.

Award-winning milliner, Beverley Edmondson, tells me this is a story she hears time and time again. “In a bygone era, hats were a key part of any woman’s daily outfit choice but these days it’s not common place so it’s understandable that women can feel anxious,” she says. “Most people just need to get used to themselves in a hat.” I had never considered having a hat made for me before I met Beverley. Her love affair with hats started at school when, following a work experience stint at a costumiers where she stumbled upon the milliner department, she asked her textiles teacher if she could make a hat for her A level project. Her teacher didn’t know how to make hats so Beverley took herself off to the London College of Fashion during the Christmas holidays and learned.

Fast forward a decade or so and she not only has her own boutique in Farnham but she also teaches others how to make hats from her studio and, earlier this year, she won Accessory Designer of the Year at the National Wedding Industry Awards.

I visited her store, on The Borough, with a view of working with Beverley on a hat that I could feel comfortable wearing to a wedding later this year but also want to wear again, perhaps to the races. “The key is to try on as many different styles, in as many different colours, as possible so you find a style you are comfortable with,” Beverley explains. “There might be parts of one hat you like and parts you don’t but we can work with that.”

After assessing face shape and colourings, as well as the outfit I had in mind, Beverley picked out a few for me to try. The first, a pale, wide-brimmed hat with feathers, I loved but when tried on with the outfit, was a little Bo Peep-esque. A couple more variations of this style later and it was clear I needed something less traditional and more structured. I found the pillar box and beret-style hats worked best but I was after something that gave my mere 5’1” frame more height. Beverley picked out a structured ‘percher’ hat in a navy blue, the colour of which didn’t match my outfit or complement my dark hair but the shape worked. We decided she would use that design as the basis for my hat but incorporate some additional asymmetric pieces of sinamay, (the material used which is made from the plant fibres of a banana tree leaf) to add some flair.

Clients can choose their ideal colour from swatches or Beverley can build up similar colours to create warmth. I chose a pale mint green, picking out one of the colours in my dress, with a Champagne oyster colour underneath. I think it works a treat.

• Hats start from £140 for a headpiece design similar to Rebecca’s and £200 for a fuller hat. Beverley Edmondson Millinery, 27B The Borough, Farnham, Surrey GU9 7NJ: Tel: 01252 715039. Web beverleyedmondson.co.uk.


Ahead of the curve with Farnham’s Beverley Edmondson Millinery - Surrey Creations


Beverley’s tips for finding the perfect hat

• Everyone remembers a hat much more than they will ever remember shoes or a dress, don’t forget to include the hat as one of the key parts of an outfit, not as an afterthought.

• You don’t need to match hat, bags and shoes, it is more important to coordinate overall than to worry about colour matches.

• Adding tones of similar colours adds depth to a look, everything all one flat tone can create a very bland outfit even if it is a perfect colour match.

• If you have a statement dress go for a simpler hat.

• Always take your outfit hat shopping with you, different cuts, styles and prints will all have an impact on what hat to choose. Colours are incredibly difficult to hold in your head! It will save you an extra trip back to the shop!

• Don’t leave your headwear to the last minute, if you need a particular colour, it may need to be made to order. Allow six to eight weeks for completely bespoke headwear.


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Surrey visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Surrey staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Surrey account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

More from People

With Woking Food & Drink Festival taking place at the start of September and summer in full flow, we catch-up with some of the Surrey foodies taking part in their new ‘bite-size’ talks to find out their top BBQ tips

Read more
Wed, 14:25

A restaurateur with a passion for gardening, French chef Raymond Blanc is set to jump out of the frying pan and into the perennials to open the 25th RHS Garden Wisley Flower Show.

Read more
Wed, 12:34

In her latest instalment of Are We Nearly There Yet?, best-selling author Adele Parks finds escape from life’s stresses and strains by climbing, jumping and swinging through trees at Farnham’s Go Ape!

Read more
Wed, 12:21

Even those who spend their days celebrating our Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty can be surprised by what they find down the country lanes, as chairman of the Surrey Hills Society, Christine Howard, discovers when she visits the GASP Motor Project in Albury

Read more
Wed, 12:06

Contrary to common belief, an increasing number of men are taking up the centuries-old art form of embroidery. Surrey Life’s Pete Gardner visits the Royal School of Needlework at Hampton Court Palace, East Molesey to take up the challenge

Read more
Wed, 11:40

As chief executive of The Grange Centre in Bookham and landlady of The Queen Victoria pub in Shalford, Sally Lines’ weekends are a mixture of re-charging her batteries, completing a masters in voluntary sector management and pulling pints...

Read more
Tuesday, August 8, 2017

In life, you may sometimes look at others and think “I wish I could see what they see; have the same experiences in life; feel what they feel; enjoy what they enjoy”.

Read more
Wednesday, August 2, 2017

No stranger to controversy, comedian turned actor Rufus Hound lives something of a double life. Born for the stage, he grew up in Surrey as Robert Simpson. Matthew Williams catches up with the famously facial-haired raconteur to chat school days, showbiz and, well, modern politics

Read more
Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Some useful points of interest when choosing a home for a loved one (or yourself)

Read more
Wednesday, August 2, 2017

We strongly believe that high level of quality and personalised care is at the heart of our daily endeavours. In this respect we consider that individual stimulation enriched with a full programme of daily activities will encourage our residents to pursue an independent lifestyle.

Read more
Friday, July 21, 2017

How time flies when you’re having fun! It may be a cliché, but for the Guildford Fringe team it rings true as they celebrate their fifth anniversary festival with a bumper year of vibrant theatre, comedy and a sprinkling of magic. Tinx Newton catches up with festival director, Nick Wychsna, to discover what’s in store

Read more
Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Always happy to tackle the issues of the day, it’s no surprise that Andrew Castle’s smooth tones have led him to become a talk radio staple. Tennis, however, is the former British number one’s first love and Wimbledon is his second home

Read more
Wednesday, July 19, 2017

With voting open for the 2017 Surrey Life Food & Drink Awards, here we catch up with a selection of last year’s award winning foodies to find out what success has meant for them

Read more
Wednesday, July 19, 2017

In the absence of a no-fault clause getting a divorce is not always easy

Read more

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Subscribe or buy a mag today

subscription ad
Surrey Life Application Link

Local Business Directory

Surrey's trusted business finder

Job search in your local area

Search For a Car In Your Area

Property Search