It's afternoon time lovelies – time to spend a few moments perusing something beautiful. Now, it's no secret I'm a huge lover of vintage inspired style. Did you also know I'm a huge fan of all things concerning veils and headpieces? I love it when I see a bride wearing an exquisite vintage inspired veil or headpiece, there's something so incredibly elegant about the Juliet cap style or a delicate cathedral length veil or a headpiece worn across the forehead?
One designer who has a real skill for creating such headpieces is Rae Birch and I've been meaning to tell you all about Rae for sometime now. I love to support talented artisan craftspeople through Love My Dress, so let me waste no time introducing Rae as the founder and designer behind Agnes Hart – a beautiful Etsy store that sells vintage style wedding headpieces, hats and veils…
Above is 'Mimi', a dramatic Juliet Cap veil with beaded lace, £200.
Before having children, Rae worked making period costumes for the
film industry – an experience that she says still has a big influence on
her work to this day…
'I took a break when my children were small, and as they grew and
I had a little more time I started to develop my hats, headpieces and
veils. I opened my Etsy shop about three years ago. My youngest child was just starting school and a friend had told me about Etsy
and described how it was a website for hand-made and vintage products.
It seemed a perfect place for me, and so I gave it a try and I found
that gradually my shop and reputation grew, and I was able to do it
Above and below is 'Petra', an exquisite Juliet Cap veil in 100% silk tulle with large side flowers and French net, £240.
Below is 'Shirley', a silk tulle close fitting cap veil with face-framing beaded flowers, £120.
'All the little hats and veils I sell are made only by me. I don't
have any assistants, and I really do feel like the traditional local
milliner or dressmaker, except the difference is that the internet has
allowed me to sell to women all over the world. (This does mean that I
can sometimes get extremely busy, so its best for customers to place an
order as much in advance as possible if they would like something
It's important for me to feel like a individual craftsperson and
to offer really personal and responsive customer service. I love
sharing in peoples' excitement about their wedding and making something
special for them.'
Below is 'Bonnie', an adaptable (wear it 4 different ways) silk tulle veil with lace edge,silk and velvet peony hair flower, £151.
'In the last year I've introduced some metal and crystal based
hair accessories, and these are designed by me, but carefully made by my
husband. There are some new designs, including combs and headbands
within this collection (such as the 'Lani' comb and 'Romola' and 'Enid'
Headpieces) that I'm very pleased with, and I hope my customers will be
Below is 'Pamela', a 1930s style Juliet cap veil with beaded leaves trim and small side flowers, £183.
'Brides are often kind enough to send me a picture from their Big
day, and I've noticed that my customers usually have a strong,
individual style. In this collection I've tried to create pieces with
scope for wearing in different ways (such as my 'Bonnie' veil). After
all, a woman doesn't always know in advance exactly what will work with
her dress,or how she'll style her hair, so its nice to have pieces with
different styling options.
I also really like to make pieces where you
can remove a silk flower etc and wear it in your hair for the reception
once the veil has been removed.'
Above and below is 'Avis' (with veil) – a tie on forehead piece made from original 1920s lace with
antique-silver embroidery detail, £124 (or as a set with Silk Tulle Veil,
Below is 'Veronica', a 1920s style crystal band with movable silk flower and lace side feature, £111.
'The photographs for my collections play a very
important part in inspiring brides and showing off my work to potential
customers. I am lucky enough to collaborate with a fantastic
photographer called Christina Solomons
and we've got a great working relationship. Christina seems to be able
to capture what I want perfectly and she has a beautiful sense of
Again, below is 'Pamela', a 1930s style Juliet cap veil with beaded leaves trim and small side flowers, £183.
'The make-up and hair for this shoot, and some of my previous ones, was by Laura Glover from Laura Loves Makeup.
Laura is an expert in vintage styles. She is available to do Vintage
style make-up for real Brides, and as well as being very talented, she
is a lovely, kind person who seems take everything in her stride.'
Below is 'Liberty', a forehead headpiece with silk tulle and silver embroidery edge, £70.
'The model for this shoot is a young, up and coming British Actress called Victoria Emslie.
She has a grace, poise and vintage-style beauty that seemed to be just
perfect for the style of veils I make. I really hope to work with her
again soon, and I'm sure we'll be seeing more of her on stage and
Below, Bonnie, as seen above.
If you love one of the Agnes Hart designs,
Rae Birch is kindly offering UK based Love My Dress readers free
shipping until 19th November – simply use the code 'LMD
UK2' at checkout. Prices range from between £53 for the Lani Crystal Comb
to £240 for the more elaborate Juliet Cap veil in 100% silk tulle with
large side flowers and French net.
Much love all,