Fascinator, Blazer (similar here): c/o Biba (via House of Fraser), Bag: Chanel, Jeans & Sequin Top: ASOS, Fluffy Sandals: Boohoo
Images by Ahmed Fayed
Fascinators are pretty things. I can’t imagine an activity more fun than trying on a bunch of headpieces. But are these beautiful masterpieces doomed to come out of our wardrobes only once a year, or worse, once in a lifetime? Are the skeletons in your closet wearing your fascinators more than you? Is there actually a thing called wearing a fascinator casually without looking like a Carrie Bradshaw wannabe? All legitimate questions that needed to be answered.
Biba has informed me about their latest collaboration with Vivien Sheriff, a British millinery legend. I got extremely excited because here was my chance to delve deeper into the enigma that was the casual fascinator. Without further ado, I wore it, I experienced it and here is what I found:
1. You don’t have to be at the races to wear one. This Biba fascinator is pretty classic. It wouldn’t look out of place at a wedding, evening party, christening – any formal gathering. But to me, this wasn’t enough. I wanted to go out to dinner wearing it without looking weird. There was no force on Earth that was going to stop me. So I did. I matched it with a pair of boyfriend jeans, a leather golden blazer and a sequin top. This is the secret recipe: Mixing low key with a touch of evening wear. If you balance it right, the fascinator will add individuality to your look.
2. You don’t have to limit yourself to dresses only when planning on wearing a fascinator. You can if you want to – but don’t feel that this is where the fun ends. No, no. We’ve just started. Think outside the box. After all, you’ll need that box once you’re done with the headgear for the day. Jumpsuits can be accompanied by headpieces, as can beautifully-tailored suits, or in my case – denim. To be blunt, if after the party or soirée you are remembered as the “one with the hat”, you didn’t quite nail it. If you are remembered as the “one with impeccable style”, you’ve reached legendary fascinator-wearer status.
3. You do have to feel comfortable and confident when wearing a headpiece. Hats can be delicate as they can be overpowering. You can hide that feeling you get when your high heeled shoes start to hurt or unbutton those jeans after a heavy meal (yes, ladylike), but if you feel even a tad disheartened by your headpiece, there’s no way of hiding that. Thankfully, there’s a remedy to prevent this from happening in the first place. This is fashion: chill, smell the flowers and have fun with your fascinator. There are already too many moments in our lives when we need to be dead serious, this is not one of them. Drink that extra glass of vino, laugh that extra decibel louder – you are in a fabulous headpiece, you CAN. If this doesn’t make you someone else’s #goals, nothing does.
Final thoughts: Inspired to try on a headpiece but are afraid to look ridiculous in it? Then let’s go back to my point about that extra glass of wine. I’m kidding. My genuine advice would be popping down to the nearest millinery or vintage shop and trying on as many headpieces as you can, the kookier, the better. We’re building up your immunity here. If you found one that complements your facial features, we’re in business. If not, simply continue by trying on smaller, more modest pieces. The fascinator that you’ll gravitate towards will almost always be an interpretation of your own personality. Are you an exotic bird of paradise or a classic geometric minimalist? You’ll be surprised how much you find out about yourself from the headpieces you’re naturally drawn to.
Do you wear headpieces casually? Let me know in the comments below.