What a year! 2014 certainly threw a brilliant mix of opportunity, challenge, friendships and fun.
I’m still pinching myself that I showcased at New York Fashion Week and pinching the pinch that I have been invited back in 2015, for my own solo NYFW show.
This year really was a milestone for my millinery career and one that was made all the more possible by the support and encouragement of family, friends and the local and extended community. The money that was raised to help me achieve the NYFW dream was overwhelming and not a moment goes by that I don’t feel honoured and humbled and all the more amped to make everyone proud.
So the year planner for 2015 is out and the long weekends and dates and places of significance, including the Big Apple, have been marked. It’s always such a fun time blocking dates for plans to be further made. The colour scheme for this year’s diaries and organisers is beautiful hues of blue.
With the millinery commitments done and dusted for the moment, my time is committed to working on the business, more so than working within. There are proposals to write, a website to launch and collections to design. I’m excited to embark on some more industry training in the early New Year and the shed atelier studio is having a well-deserved spring clean. It feels good and I am inspired and ready to embark on 2015.
And reflecting back, wow, what a magnificent ride. The time management skills were tested, working full time for the Department of Agriculture and Food WA, by day and Hats by Felicity by weekend and night. My accommodation business also enjoyed another busy year of bookings. It was exciting and challenging to create three separate millinery collections that showcased across the globe, as well as a healthy number of commissioned custom-made pieces that appeared from Melbourne to Marble Bar, Kununurra, Darwin and Broome. And proudly, we had winners and finalist entrants in Broome and Melbourne racing events for Fashions on the Field.
It was a cracker of a year, even though at times we all wondered if the fuse was going to fiz or blow!
Like for most, though, the year also had its lows and losing another mate will always be the lowest of low. We never seem to be spared the reminder or the grief. And the only message I personally can ever take home, is to live life to the full; to talk about your dreams, turn them into goals and to have a go. A great man, mentor and father figure told me many a time to simply ‘have a go’. He too has passed now. I often wonder if I would have ever made it to the runway without those words so often drummed into my later life.
Our friend Juddy’s accident happened the week I headed to NYC and although I missed the chance to celebrate his life with our friends, I did get to share a very special moment for him in New York.
I’m a Luke Bryan fan and went to his concert at Maddison Square Gardens. During the concert, Luke sang a favourite song that he wrote for this brother and sister, who had both passed away. Towards the end of this song he stopped and said to the sold out crowd of 18,200 fans, that he was going to sing the song again. We were thrilled. He told each of us to take a moment and think about that special person we’d lost and as we focussed, he sang the song again, this time for them. This was my very special moment and memory for Juddy.
Juddy always wore a hat. Even on the stage as a nominee for best dressed male at an evening cocktail event, he wore his hat. He was married wearing his hat. His wife Mel says “his hat was such a part of him, it went absolutely everywhere and he protected those he loved with it”.
My millinery passion and travels have always honoured the cowboy hat and in signing off this post and this year, I honour the man beneath the hat, our mate Juddy. I also introduce you to a song, and I wish you the very best for Christmas and a happy and safe new year.
Thank you for your incredible encouragement and chat again in 2015.
Sprinkle kindness and be happy. X f