Sunday, June 21, 2009

Florence Claridge


Before I close the book on hats at Ascot, I must mention the hats of Florence Claridge. She has been attending Ascot for 25 years, and each year her hats are stunning in every sense of the word. If you notice the DS on this year's wonderful yellow hat, it stands for David Shilling, who many including me consider to be the finest milliner in the world. He said in an interview, "I'm the best hatmaker there is. I don't know whether it is a good thing or not." His sculptural and architectural hats are one of a kind works of arts, appearing in museums around the world. He started designing hats for his mother Gertrude Shilling at the age of 12. Her appearances at Ascot were an institution until her death in 1999. Here is a sampling of the breathtaking hats of Florence Claridge. I read in an interview she gave that drinking champagne is quite difficult in one of these hats. I'll drink a glass in her honor. Well done!





11 comments:

maureen said...

she must have very good equilibrium! those hats are fantastic!

Style Redux 2 said...

Maureen-So glad you like them too. I would love to know if they stay on with combs or an elastic band or prayer perhaps! LOL It seems the least wind and it would topple!

Pigtown-Design said...

I had a couple of pix of her, too! Last year, my friend who attends Ladies Day at Ascot, took some pix of her in the pink hat that looks like orbiting rings. Amazing, isn't she?

Style Redux 2 said...

Meg-I hope her collection will end up at the V & A-they are incredible!

Sarah Klassen said...

They are indeed fantastic!

Style Redux 2 said...

Sarah-They are fantastic.

ticklishfromadistance said...

So interesting and fun. What a cool thing to be known for!

Style Redux 2 said...

G.-She must need a separate van to transport her hats.

Sanity Fair said...

pink #2 is SO Cecil Beaton/My Fair Lady!!!

Style Redux 2 said...

SF-That one fascinates me-I love it. I of course had to watch the Ascot Scene from My Fair Lady the other day on You Tube.

cattus said...

Hi!
I know I'm late to this post, but can you tell me anything about Florence Claridge beyond that she's a society lady who wears great hats? I've Googled on the US site and the UK site but find very little about her. I'd love to get a little background on her, she seems like quite a character!