Thank you

For almost a week now I have been trying to find the right words to express my heartfelt thanks for the crowd funding link and the surprise event in Broome. The New York themed fundraisers have honoured not only my opportunity to the runway but also, they have most humbly honoured me.

I’m not convinced I will ever be able to convey what this act of superb kindness has done for me and I may not know everyone involved but to those precious people who have donated through the pozible site, the girls at Broome Florist, Green Tree Room, Leon Mead, Chris Maher, Garrett Prendiville and the Mangrove team; Kira and the Kimberley Girls, Marissa & Ross, Target, Carpet Paint & Tile; those super-generous beings who donated exquisite items to auction; my brother Matt, my friends who travelled across the country from the desert and the city and to the magnificent Community of beyond and Broome – Thank You.

As for those women of magnificence, my friends that planned this event and established the site and have constantly supported me so well – sometimes I struggle with the right words and when naming my creations I often suffer the same.

To each of you who have done this for me, I honour you through my collection bound for New York.

When the Hats by Felicity creations present to the runway and the world, … I will introduce to you; the Natasha, Hilary, Holly, Penelope, Jodi, Vinka and Sam; the Trish, Kylie, Ellyn, Josie, Kelli, Melanie, Anne-Marie, Leah and Jane.

This is my honour to you … and now the entire collection is almost named.

Thank you. x flic

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Hats by Felicity Crowd Funding Link

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A Sun Kissed Valentine

Twelve months ago today I experienced a very different kind of Valentine’s Day, enduring the first of two surgeries to remove the nasty melanoma from my arm.  Melly-the-noma as the legion was known was the beginning of an adventure that I could have never predicted.  But here we are, 12 months on, healthy, sporting a scar and preparing for the runway of New York.

February 2013

February 2013

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February 2014

“How are the preparations going?” many have asked.  Well, I’m slowly getting over the creator’s block that unexpectedly snuck in and so far, the timetable seems to be working.  I have completed six pieces in total since the New Year, not all bound for New York but I definitely deem a few worthy of the trip.

And I can’t help myself – I have to share a few sneak peeks with you …

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February in Broome is not the ideal time to be working in a tin shed.  I usually don’t start the year’s creating until it’s less humid and hot but given this year’s New York deadline, the studio shed lights are on.

I have arranged for the tin doors to be replaced, which will not only help the struggling air conditioner to cope but will provide me with some glorious natural light. The glass doors haven’t arrived yet but hopefully soon.

Not working in my normal environment isn’t conducive to productivity.  I’ve been working in my house, trekking to and from the shed, sometimes just for a thimble.  Fingers crossed the new doors arrive soon and this milliner can be on the move back into the shed atelier.

My New York story is generating media interest with journalists from all over dropping me a line; there’s even a film crew sniffing about.  Of course I am completely out of my depth with this. I am used to interviewing and being on the viewfinder side of the camera, so I have yelled (loudly and with a quiver) for help from a very experienced and treasured friend, to whom I can tell I am about to be indebted forever.

Feathers and other goodies have been coming in from around Australia, for which I say the biggest thank you.  I love hand collected feathers, not only for their natural beauty but for the chapter they add to the unique story of each headpiece.

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You will always here me praise my amazing friends and this post is no exception.  A cheeky group of buddies from both within and external to the Broome Community have been quietly organising an event in my honour, to celebrate the impending New York Fashion Week honour.  Of course they aren’t being forward with too many details but I’m told patience is the virtue so I’m waiting very patiently!

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The Kimberley has been enjoying such a big Wet season.  Plants in my garden are flowering that I didn’t know even flowered.  The inspiration is endless.

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As well as creating the collection, my current focus is my health, especially given the diagnosis twelve months ago.  I have completed a seven day detox to cleanse the internals and get back on track.   I find February a good time to successfully achieve this often quite difficult task.  By this time the New Year celebrations have subsided and my favourite Australia Day and its associated silliness has come and gone.

And of course there’s no better exercise than a morning walk along Cable Beach.

So, as I head for my six monthly skin check, I encourage any of you with sun kissed skin like mine to book your appointment too.

Till next time … Valentine giggles all round.

x Felicity

Concrete jungle where dreams are made of

Let’s hear it for New York, New York, New York …
Happy New Year beautiful people! I hope 2014 is everything that you dream for and is filled with health, friends, family, giggles, bubbles and fun.
This is going to be a big year for me, especially with the New York adventure and many have hinted how super organised I’ll need to be. Truth is, every year is bigger than the last, so I thought I’d share with you how I prepare for the onslaught.
My favourite way to start the New Year is by making plans, so the first purchase for 2014 was a wall planner and diary. For a brief moment I thought this would be the year to rid the hard copy and shift to technology but that was a brief moment that I decided against, as there’s no nicer way to start the year than with a gorgeous new diary to pencil in your holiday plans, work, business and other commitments and daily jobs lists, ready to tick off as you achieve.
I choose a colourful diary with soft textured cover; something that looks good and feels good, which is all very important. This year’s colour is the Roebuck Bay green that I always strive to achieve in my creations.
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Holidays and weekend get-a-ways are the first entries in my calendar, followed by my small business commitments and then work. The latter is the easiest as I work full time so it’s a given that Monday to Friday will be spent at work, along with some overnight’s in the region. It’s the before and after work and weekend entries that I spend time planning.
The first entry on the planner and diary this year was, of course, New York.         In September this Milliner will be on the move to the United States for what will undoubtedly be the adventure of a lifetime. Sunday September 7th has a feather attached to it being the day I unveil Hats by Felicity to the world on the runway at New York Fashion week.
S H U D D E R ….

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To make sure I survive the year’s challenges, I put into practice the self-care plan. Those that know me well, know I take the self-care plan very seriously. Since early 2000 I have implemented my Monday nights – the sacred night that is dedicated to me. Flic nite as it’s affectionately known to friends and family, is the night I politely say no to all invitations; the night I am completely comfortable in doing nothing. Lucky for me Monday can often be a good TV line up. It’s also the night that my close friends and family phone for a yarn. Sometimes I book a massage or facial. It’s about stopping to smell the frangipanis, enjoy my space and reenergise. We live in such a busy world filled with food, bubbles, work and play that without jumping off the coaster at least one night a week, for me at least, the chances of burn out are big. Those closest to me completely respect my Monday nights and never pressure or expect me to make the exception.

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Although quite passive compared to others, the next entry is the exercise plan. My exercise program usually involves alternate mornings of gardening and beach walks before work. These forms of exercise are great for the body and the mind AND for inspiration for millinery creation.
Those that follow my Hats by Felicity Instagram are often privy to my morning shots of inspiration, particularly from Cable Beach. Broome and the Kimberley are endless sources of inspiration.

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The self care plan and exercise program are diarised along with dedicated timeframes for my passion and art that is the Millinery.
Taking on full time work meant a very real need for planning. It’s such a pleasure to spend Saturday’s working for yourself, which is my dedicated day for Hats by Felicity. When the Broome race round commences I may need to start a little earlier on Saturday mornings however, as I can’t miss a day at Broome races.
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Equally as important to all the above is dedicating time to the cancer cause with fundraising and catching up for bubbles and fun with my awesome friends.
With commitments to holidays, getaways, my self-care plan, work, millinery, fundraising, friends and fun, I look forward to filling the remaining spaces with whatever opportunities come my way.
Having a plan is important to me but I also like to remain flexible because you just never know what opportunities might come your way. I am not too hard on myself if my plan diverts (with the exception of Flic nite), after all we can’t forget that life is for living.
To bounce out of bed of a morning I have set my alarm to wake me with Alicia Keys singing Empire State of Mind. With a year like this ahead, it can only be a good day waking to the chorus of New York, New York, New York …
So there you have it, a snippet into my kick start for 2014. If any of these ideas appeal to you, please take a feather from my hat. My other advice is surround yourself with positive and loyal people who celebrate the excitement of your dreams.
Cheers and Happy 2014. x f

New York, concrete jungle where dreams are made of
There’s nothin’ you can’t do
Now you’re in New York
These streets will make you feel brand new
Big lights will inspire you
Let’s hear it for New York, New York,
New York

New York Fashion Week – every little girls dream

It’s official!  The invitation to bring Hats by Felicity to the runway of New York Fashion Week is accepted, the registration contract has been signed and our spot is secured!  Sunday 7th September 2014 at 4pm is the date to stick a feather on your calendar, when we will be back in New York City at the Helen Mills Event Space.  This time, however, as a designer showcasing the Hats by Felicity Spring/Summer 2015 collection at New York Fashion Week!  How do you think we are feeling?

You guessed it – absolutely petrified!

I have pinched myself so much that strangers are staring at the bruises and believe me, the cliche is exactly what every little girl dreams it to be.  Sometimes I wake wondering if I have dreamt the whole thing.  My hat studio however, soon reminds me of the reality and chaos that my life has now entered, with feathers, flowers, fabrics and a white board full of jobs to do between now and the big apple event.

Where to start?  To be truthful, I haven’t really known but to get the creations underway I can guarantee I’ll be going few places other than the hat studio this festive break.

As we speak I am cleaning, preening and trimming feathers in anticipation of the designs, currently drawn on envelopes, toilet paper, fuel receipts and drawing apps on the go, being created into stunning reality and bringing to life the inaugural Hats by Felicity collection for New York.

Petrified is of course just one of the many emotions stitching my self each day and I have to say, I wouldn’t trade the exhilaration, excitement and thrill of the honour.  I have all intentions of doing you so proud.  Especially those who have already packed their bags to join the fun and support me at the event.

Stay tuned funstars …. and keep smiling all the way to the stage.  We are on!

x f

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Oaks Day Stars all round

It’s a proud moment for the milliner when you look across the track and see your creations out and about.
From the Kimberley to Melbourne’s Spring Carnival my recent joy was looking across the Crown Oaks Day rails to see Hats by Felicity creations immersed in the fun.

Bluestar, worn by Jane is a personal favourite of mine.  From the 2012 collection Bluestar couldn’t have been a more fitting compliment for Jane’s new dress.

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I often say you should purchase your headpiece first and your dress will soon find you and Jane’s ensemble is the perfect example.  Jane and Bluestar were an Oaks Day hit from all angles of the track.

I also say your headpiece should be worn more than once and that each time you wear her, she will look completely different to the last.

Jane wearing Bluestar at Broome Ladies Day 2012

Jane wearing Bluestar at Broome Ladies Day 2012

After all your unique headpiece purchase is like a piece of art, created to be constanly enjoyed, shared and out there on show.

Another Oaks Day favourite wearing a star was Roxie.  When Roxie first walked into the Hats by Felicity studio in Broome, Kimberley Star immediately caught her eye.

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When Roxie boarded the tram for Flemmington it was she who caught everyone’s eye.Jane4

The Kimberley girls had a wonderful time in Melbourne and the Melbourne girls and their Hats by Felicity had a fabulous time as well.

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With Spring Carnival now over it’s time to pop the bubble and think seriously about New York.  In the mean time though, it’s thank you to my ever loyal clients and friends who have once again made me the super-proud milliner on the move …

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Keep smiling.

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There’s a spring carnival in our step

It’s time this milliner got on the move again so we are packing up and heading south from Broome to Melbourne for Spring Carnival.
The Hats by Felicity collection has arrived ahead and is proudly displayed for sale at Valentino Decor in Toorak Village, Toorak.

Hats by Felicity at Valentino Decor

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Pop in and see the gorgeous Barb. Here’s a snippet of what Hats by Felicity creations are on display.

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While you are in Toorak Village check out My Powder Room next door to Valentino Decor. Adrian has produced for me and is showcasing a Hats by Felicity book of the 2013 collection. By all reports this book is super-stunning and I am so rediculously excited to see it. Valentino Decor and My Powder Room have been amazing supporters of Hats by Felicity and I can’t thank them enough.

I will be traveling with a few new creations to add to the collection so be sure to let me know if you are interested in these little treasures.

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It will be 40 degrees when I depart Broome and 16 degrees when I arrive in Melbourne. I have absolutely no idea what I will be wearing to the races.  It’s hard enough to get my head around a minimum temperature that my air conditioner doesn’t set as low as. I will be trackside at Flemington though,  at Oaks Day in particular, so be sure to holler over the crowds if you are there too.

I’ll be using the social media bush telegraph to update you on the bubbles and fun in the car park by the rails.

Please Facebook, tweet, email and text me pics if you are out and about in your Hats by Felicity during the Spring Carnival, whether you are celebrating in Melbourne, Mudgee, Broome or beyond. This year’s out and about album is shaping up to be a beauty.

It’s been an absolute pleasure to create your pieces again and I am already so proud just knowing you are out there wearing a little creation from the Kimberley.

Giddy up, good luck in the sweeps and keep smiling those rays of sunshine for perfect trackside weather.

x f

Looking back and forward – raise your hats

A week back in reality and the boots have been shelved. It was 41 degrees today in Broome so the Nashville purchases will be stored for a little while yet … the straw Stetson from Texas on the other hand is an essential, even worn to the clothes line.
There’s nothing worse than the post holiday blues. This state of being sets in when the bags are unpacked, washing is done, show and tell is over and you’re wearing a dint in your mac pad scrolling the holiday pics.
Of course, the only way out of these blues is to book the next adventure.
Lucky for me I have a full-time job that I enjoy and that keeps me busy and I started back the day after my touch-down in Broome. I’ve also been back in the hat studio, walking the beach, catching up with friends and done a fabulous long girly lunch.
Friends keep asking me what was my favourite part of the trip but I struggle each time to respond. Everything was a favourite; the accommodations, the food, the catch ups with old friends and the meeting of new. Bubbles on the boat in Sausalito, the US Open tennis, the Lion King on Broadway, Speakeasy Bathtub Gin; Beauty and Essex, Eataly, the Sex and the City Tour, the top of the Rock, Empire State Building and of course, the Fashion Week events and this is only in New York.

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I’m still dreaming of the Blake Shelton concert in Nashville and the music, boot shops and bars. And the cowboys, rodeos and comedy show in Fort Worth Texas; even my local bars and coffee shops in each US state that I called home.
In summary though, I guess I would say that in San Francisco it was catching up with friends, boating and sourcing beautiful materials for hats.

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In New York it was the fashion, food, shopping, architecture, walking, meeting lovely milliners and their hats.

The Hat Shop NYC

The Hat Shop NYC

In Nashville it was the country music, along with the cowboy boots, bars and hats.

Blake Shelton

Blake Shelton

And in Texas it was the wild frontier history, juicy steaks, cowboys, cowhide, rodeos, shoe shines and Peters Brothers hats.

Peters Brothers Hats

Peters Brothers Hats

The service was great, the people are friendly and they really do say ya’ll but you know me, it will always be about the hats.

Travelling gives you such the new lease of life. Inspiration, confidence, reflection and direction and I’ve come back bursting with it all.
The highlight from the trip however, has blossomed since I got home.
What could possibly be more exciting than fashion, food, Broadway, boots and hats?
Showcasing your own hat collection to the world!

Hats by Felicity

Hats by Felicity

Fashion Gallery New York Fashion Week has invited me to bring Hats by Felicity to the New York Fashion Week runway for Spring Collections, 2014! Yes, read this again if you must … I am heading back to New York Fashion Week – this time as a designer.
I know, I know! It’s crazy! I’ve been pinching myself for days and it’s true.
All I can think about is if I hadn’t travelled to New York, this state of exhilaration would not be me.
If I hadn’t stayed at the Crowne Plaza in Times Square I wouldn’t have met Colette and Melba when I booked to see the Lion King and without meeting these two angels I sincerely doubt I would have ended up at Fashion week. If I hadn’t been there, I wouldn’t have blogged about the designers and events and if I hadn’t blogged, the connections would never have been made. If Gregory from Fashion Gallery hadn’t offered, I wouldn’t have this absolute honour to accept.
If I hadn’t had that nasty melanoma removed from my arm in February, I wouldn’t have booked to New York.

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Follow our dreams beautiful people and live every fabulous moment in life.
We did say the only way out of the blues is with the next adventure, so I say bring on New York 2014 and raise your glass and hats to living life. x f

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